Term: 1987 to 1999 After graduating from Harvard law School, Kurt L. Schmoke joined the Baltimore law firm of Piper and Marbury. In 1977, he served in the Carter administration's White House on the domestic policy staff until 1978 when he was named assistant U.S. attorney for Maryland. Schmoke served as state's attorney for Baltimore City from 1982 until 1987, when he successfully ran for mayor, and was the city's first popularly elected African-American mayor. Schmoke placed a major emphasis on adult literacy and established an agency to support this initiative. He increased state funding for city schools and established the Community Development Financing Corp., whose mission was to raise public and private funds which were to be used in the renovation of abandoned homes. Through the Clinton administration's Empowerment Zone project, he worked to bring housing, jobs and business to the city. After three terms, he decided not to run for a fourth and returned to practicing law. He later became dean of the Howard University Law School, where he is currently a university administrator. He lives in the city's Ashburton neighborhood.
Kenneth K. Lam, Baltimore Sun