Who was Kevin Kamenetz? Looking back at some of the Maryland politician's career highlights

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Kevin Kamenetz, the Baltimore County executive and Democratic candidate for governor, died Thursday morning of cardiac arrest at age 60. Here's a quick look at his background and career highlights.

Profession: lawyer, public official


Lived in: Owings Mills

Family: Married to wife, Jill; two teenaged sons, Karson and Dylan.


Born and raised: in Lochearn, Baltimore County

Education: Baltimore County public schools, Gilman School. Johns Hopkins University for his undergraduate degree. University of Baltimore School of Law.

Professional career: assistant state's attorney, Baltimore City, 1982-1987. Lawyer in private practice 1987-2010.

Political career: a Democrat, he served four terms on the Baltimore County Council representing the northwest part of the county from 1994 until 2010. Served two terms as county executive beginning in 2010. Announced candidacy for Democratic nomination for governor in September.

Career highlights

» As county executive, Kamenetz never raised the property tax rate or income tax rate, which have remained stable for more than two decades. Kamenetz reorganized and combined county departments in an effort to promote efficiency.

» He led a county effort to examine future uses of the shuttered steel mill at Sparrows Point, marking a political shift from predecessors who tried to revive the steel industry. The property eventually was bought by private investors, who are redeveloping it into Tradepoint Atlantic.

» After nearly five years of negotiation with the federal government, Kamenetz backed a settlement to end discriminatory housing practices that had racially segregated the county's affordable housing stock, and invest $30 million in building homes for low-income African-Americans.

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» Under his tenure, Kamenetz also sold three government-owned properties, including two that generated significant controversy: the North Point Government Center in Dundalk and a former fire station in Towson.


» He embarked on a school construction campaign dubbed "Schools for our Future," that aimed to modernize the second-oldest school building inventory in the state, though parents have not always agreed with the decisions of which schools are to be replaced and which ones are to be renovated.

» He presided over and pushed for the economic redevelopment of Towson.

» Kamenentz renamed Robert E. Lee Park to Lake Roland Park and signed a bill adding being transgendered as a protected class under county law. He also signed an executive order barring county workers from asking individuals about their citizenship or immigration status, as well as set a policy that county police would not investigate students at the county's colleges and universities for immigration issues.

Editorial: Kevin Kamenetz's legacy: Understanding Baltimore County's past, seeing its future »