John Sarbanes (D-MD-3)i

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John Sarbanes Congressman Maryland District 3

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John Peter Spyros Sarbanes

John Sarbanes Congressional Candidate Maryland District 3


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Biography of John Sarbanes from Friends of John Sarbanes


Congressman John Sarbanes has served in the U.S. Congress since 2007. Born and raised in Baltimore, Congressman Sarbanes has experience working in the private, public and non-profit sectors. In 2006, he was elected to the House of Representatives to represent Maryland’s Third Congressional District. In the House of Representatives, he has been appointed to the Committee on Energy and Commerce where he served on the Subcommittee on Health and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection. He is currently a member of the Committee on Natural Resources where he serves on the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands and the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources. At the start of the 112th Congress, he was also appointed to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, where he serves on the Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation and the Subcommittee on Research and Science Education.

Congressman Sarbanes and his family live in Towson, giving him the opportunity to drive home every night and hear from people he serves in Congress. Listening to their concerns allows him to better represent Maryland and has shaped his work in the House of Representatives.

Marylanders have always had a strong tradition of environmentalism rooted in a passion for the Chesapeake Bay. Congressman Sarbanes has led efforts in the Congress to clean up the Chesapeake Bay with a particular focus on empowering residents of the Bay watershed to become citizen stewards of the Bay and give them an active role in restoring it. He has also worked to expand environmental education opportunities for children, authoring the No Child Left Inside Act to promote healthier children and communities.

He has fought to expand higher education opportunities through financial assistance programs like the Pell Grant and authored laws to help students repay their college loans after they graduate. Congressman Sarbanes wrote a law to create the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Option, which provides graduates with forgiveness of remaining student loan debt after 10 years of work in public service or the non-profit sector. The new law helps teachers, nurses, first responders and other public servants pay for college. It allows more people to follow their dreams in careers that are important and rewarding but not always particularly lucrative.

As a member of the committee with jurisdiction over health care policy, Congressman Sarbanes has focused on making sure there are enough doctors and nurses to provide quality care for all Americans. He helped create new laws that address health care workforce shortages, especially in primary care, and strengthened programs for physician scholarships, loan forgiveness, and residency training.

Congressman Sarbanes graduated from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and studied law and politics in Greece on a Fulbright Scholarship. After graduating from Harvard Law School, he returned to Baltimore, where he clerked for Judge J. Frederick Motz on the federal district court and the following year began his law practice at Venable. He spent 18 years at Venable, six as Chairman of the firm’s Health Care practice.

Before coming to Congress, Congressman Sarbanes worked to make Maryland’s public school system one of the best in the nation, serving for seven years with the Maryland State Superintendent as liaison to the Baltimore City Public Schools. At Venable, he represented non-profit hospitals and senior living providers in their mission to deliver high quality health care to the people of Maryland. Working with public interest organizations in Maryland like the Public Justice Center, he championed efforts to protect consumers, provide decent public housing and ensure fair treatment in the workplace.

Since childhood, Congressman Sarbanes has attended the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation in Baltimore and he has also been active with his wife and children in the Bolton Street Synagogue. For more than twenty years, he has served as a board member of the Institute for Christian and Jewish Studies, which seeks to promote understanding and dialogue among people of different religious faiths.