Old Politicos Never Die

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Leonardtown Mayor Harry “Chip” Norris and Maryland Gov. Marvin Mandel, still practicing law.Mayor Chip Norris & Gov. Marvin Mandel / The Chesapeake photo

America’s best small town mayor, Chip Norris served for two decades improving the old town of Leonardtown, expanding the tax base, upgrading the town’s sewer & water systems and rejuvenating the old downtown of closed storefronts into an exciting new era of activities frequently drawing thousands to see car shows, beach parties and concerts.

Marvin Mandel, Speaker of the Maryland of the Maryland House of Delegates, took over as Governor to fill the vacancy caused by the election of Republican Governor Spiro Theodore “Ted” Agnew as Vice-President of the United States on the ticket with President Richard M. Nixon in 1968. Mandel was elected as a Democrat in 1970 and 1974, was removed from office upon his conviction on racketeering charges, and in 1979, for the remaining three days of his term, was restored to his office after his conviction was tossed by a Court of Appeals decision.

Governor Marvin Mandel

Governor (Democrat), 1969-79
Governor of Maryland, January 7, 1969 to January 17, 1979.

Chair, Governor’s Executive Council, 1969-79. Chair, Board of Public Works, 1969-79. Chair, Comprehensive Health Planning Agency, 1969. Member, Hall of Records Commission, 1969-70; State House Trust, 1969; Maryland Highway Safety Coordinating Committee, 1969-79; Appalachian Regional Commission, 1969-79; Maryland Education Council, 1969-79; Southern Regional Education Board, 1969-79; Northeast Regional Transportation Committee, 1969-. Chair, Maryland Council on the Environment, 1970-79.

Chair, Democratic Governors’ Conference, 1971-72. Chair, Middle Atlantic States Governors’ Conference, 1971-72. Chair, National Governors’ Conference, 1972-73 (member, executive committee, 1970; vice-chair, transportation committee, 1970). Chair, Energy Committee, and Committee on Transportation, Science, and Technology, Southern Governors’ Conference.
Justice of the Peace, Baltimore City, 1950.

Member, House of Delegates, representing Baltimore City, (District 5), 1952-69. House Speaker, 1964-69 (acting speaker, 1963). Chair, Ways and Means Committee, 1963. Member, Legislative Council, 1963-69 (vice-chair, 1964-69); Legislative Liaison Committee for the Constitutional Convention, 1967. Chair, Baltimore City Delegation, 1954-69. Member, Executive Committee, National Conference of State Legislative Leaders.

Member, Governor’s Commission on Municipal Court for Baltimore City, 1951; Governor’s Commission on Provident Hospital, 1960; Commission to Study the Establishment of a State System of Insuring Savings and Loan Association Deposits, 1961; Baltimore Metropolitan Area Study Commission, 1961-63; State War Ballot Commission, 1964-69. Board of Trustees, Maryland Historical Trust, 1964-79. Member, Maryland Commission on the Capital City, 1965-69; Interstate Advisory Committee on the Potomac River Basin, 1965-69; Maryland Education Council, 1966-69. Board of Trustees, Maryland Environmental Trust, 1967-69.

Chair, Governor’s Commission on the Structure and Efficiency of State Government, 2003. Board of Regents, University System of Maryland, 2003-09.

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, April 19, 1920. Attended Baltimore public schools; The Johns Hopkins University; University of Maryland; University of Maryland School of Law, LL.B., 1942. Admitted to Maryland Bar. Attorney. Member, Federal, Maryland State and Anne Arundel County Bar Associations. Served in U.S. Army, 1942-44. Member, Democratic State Central Committee, Baltimore City, 1951. Chair, Democratic State Central Committee, 1968. Co-Chair, Board of Directors, Maryland Business for Responsive Government, 2009-. Member, Omicron Delta Kappa; American Legion. Past State Chair, Jewish War Veterans. Man of the Year, Tau Epsilon Phi, 1964. Honorary Doctor of Laws, University of Maryland, 1969. Honorary Doctor of Laws, Towson State College, 1969. Man of the Year, 21 Jewel Square Club of Philadelphia, 1969. Herbert H. Lehman Ethics Award, 1969, 1970. Honorary Doctor of Laws, Washington College, 1971. Honorary doctorate, Yeshiva University, 1971. Honorary doctorate, Xavier University, 1971. Honorary degree, The Johns Hopkins University, 1973. Honorary degree, Mount St. Mary’s College, 1973. Delegate, Democratic Party National Convention, 1976. Member, National Governors’ Association; National Institute of Former Governors; The Speaker’s Society. Member, University of Maryland Athletic Capital Campaign Cabinet; University of Maryland Terrapin Club (former president); University of Maryland M Club. Thomas Kennedy Award, House of Delegates, 2002. Married to the former Barbara Oberfeld, 1941-74; two children. In 1974, married the former Jeanne Blackistone Dorsey, who died October 6, 2001.

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