After nearly a quarter-century in office, Del. Barbara Frush says she will not seek re-election to the Maryland House of Delegates once her term expires in 2018, but will co-chair Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker’s gubernatorial campaign.
The Beltsville resident will end her term in December 2018. Frush, 72, has represented Prince George’s and Anne Arundel counties since 1993. She is joined by 21st District Delegation colleagues Sen. Jim Rosapepe and Dels. Joseline Peña-Melnyk and Ben Barnes.
“I’ve been in politics since I was an 18-years-old in 1964,” Frush said. “Politics has been my life. While the session is short, we’ve got a 90-day session, you’re always tied to Annapolis. Sometimes, you have to walk away while you’re on top.”
Two of her most prized projects include working with the Chesapeake Bay Commission as well as establishing the Clean Indoor Air Act, which prevents smoking inside any indoor workplace in the state. The Chesapeake Bay was a highlight of her childhood, she said, as she joined her family at their cottage at Beverly Beach on the Mayo Peninsula in Anne Arundel County.
“That’s why I’ve been so protective of the Chesapeake Bay,” Frush said. “We have to make it viable and keep it strong. That’s the one thing I’m going to miss the most.”
Frush is a “terrific, well-respected legislator,” said Rosapepe, 66, currently serving his third term in the state Senate. He said Frush’s leadership role in Baker’s campaign is “a big boost” for Baker.
“She understands what people in our communities in Beltsville, Laurel and College Park care about and has devoted the last 20-plus years to representing them extremely well,” Rosapepe said.
While she said she intends to spend more time with her family, including her two daughters and four grandchildren, Frush said she isn’t exactly leaving the spotlight since she became the co-chair of Baker’s campaign. The two have worked together in the state delegation, where Baked served from 1994 to 2003.
Baker, a Democrat, was elected Prince George’s County Executive in 2010, following two unsuccessful runs for office in 2002 and 2006. He launched his gubernatorial campaign in June for the seat now held by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan.
“We are good and fast friends,” Frush said of Baker. “This will give me the opportunity to work with him and help him to move forward.