Alec Ross, a best-selling author, entrepreneur and former adviser to Hillary Clinton, announced Wednesday he will run for the Democratic nomination to challenge incumbent Republican Gov. Larry Hogan in the 2018 election.
Ross, 45, of Baltimore, is the first Democrat to announce a bid in what is expected to be a crowded field of gubernatorial challengers.
Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz, Prince George's County Executive Rushern Baker, Rep. John Delaney, former Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, state Sen. Richard S. Madaleno Jr., former NAACP executive director Benjamin Jealous and former Venable chairman James Shea also are exploring runs.
The Democratic primary is scheduled for June 26, 2018. The general election takes place Nov. 6, 2018.
"I believe that talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not — and that must change, with new and innovative ideas," Ross said in a statement. "Right now, under Larry Hogan, that's just not happening. Hogan is embracing Donald Trump's agenda, which will hurt our schools, do damage to the Chesapeake Bay and simply doesn't reflect the values of most Marylanders."
Ross wrote "Industries of the Future," a best-selling book on innovation, and served as senior adviser for innovation to Clinton when she was Secretary of State under President Barack Obama. He is a senior fellow at Johns Hopkins University and co-founder of "One Economy," a nonprofit that helped deliver high-speed Internet and technology training to low-income communities.
His wife is a Baltimore teacher, and they have three children who attend Baltimore public schools.