Earlier this morning, Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), announced her retirement from Congress, after 5 terms in office. Mikulski, 78, was the first woman to chair the Senate Appropriations Committee, and has served in Congress longer than any woman in history. The Maryland native first started her career in public service as an elected official on the Baltimore City Council, where she spent five years prior to being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1977. After serving the House for 10 years, she was then elected to the Senate in 1986. Her retirement opens doors to the future of Maryland politics, as several viable Maryland Democrats and Republicans are already predicted to make a run for the seat in 2016.
Senator Mikulski throughout her career remained a key proponent and supporter of advancing the arts and humanities. Along with Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY) she is the Co-Chair of the Senate Cultural Caucus, and received the William H. Natcher Distinguished Service Award from the Committee for Education funding in 2014 for her “distinguished services in elevating the priority for education funding to ensure better opportunities for our nation’s citizens.” NAfME wishes Senator Mikulski the best and it has been a pleasure working with her throughout these years furthering music and the arts in education. We look forward to working with her in her final session in Congress.
Ronny Lau, Special Assistant, Center for Advocacy and Constituency Engagement, March 2, 2015. © National Association for Music Education (NAfME.org).