Maryland Senate President Bill Ferguson, House Speaker Adrienne Jones Honored as Legislators of the Year

Senate President Bill Ferguson (district 46, Baltimore City) and House Speaker Adrienne Jones (district 10, Baltimore County) have been honored by the Maryland League of Conservation Voters (Maryland LCV) as the organization’s 2022 Legislators of the Year. The pair were recognized for their leadership roles in the passage of the monumental Climate Solutions Now Act during the 2022 General Assembly legislative session. 

The awards will be presented as part of Changemakers: Celebrating Environmental Leaders event on Thursday, September 15, at the Institute of Marine & Environmental Technology, Inner Harbor, Baltimore. Event tickets are on sale now.

“The Climate Solutions Now Act is the country’s most significant climate legislation and positions Maryland as a national leader in addressing this urgent problem,” said Maryland LCV Executive Director Kim Coble. “Senate President Ferguson and Speaker Jones were steadfast in their efforts to ensure this landmark legislation made it across the finish line with strong support.” 

Sen. Ferguson, a lifelong Maryland resident, is serving his third term as the State Senator for Maryland’s 46th Legislative District. In January 2020, he was unanimously elected to serve as President of the Maryland Senate, making him the second youngest Senate President in state history. Since 2020, he has shepherded key bills that include an unprecedented investment in Maryland’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities and more than $1 billion in state economic stimulus to support vulnerable Marylanders through the COVID-19 crisis.

“President Ferguson is known for his ability to build relationships with his colleagues and consensus around tough issues,” said Maryland LCV’s Coble. “These skills were on full display during the 2022 legislative session as he effectively built and maintained support for momentous climate legislation.” 

Speaker Adrienne A. Jones, who has been a delegate since 1997, shattered two glass ceilings when she was unanimously elected by the full House of Delegates to serve as the first African-American and the first woman Speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates in history. Prior to being Speaker, Speaker Jones also held the distinction of being the first African American woman to serve as Speaker Pro Tem in the Maryland House of Delegates, serving in that capacity under Speaker Mike Busch for 16 years. Speaker Jones served on the House Appropriations Committee and was Chair of the Capital Budget and Education, and Economic Development Subcommittees.

“Speaker Jones has long been known by her colleagues for her no-nonsense approach to legislating,” said Coble. “Her perseverance and outcome-based approach were critical in getting the Climate Solutions Now Act passed.”

“At a time when the global climate crisis continues to harm communities in our State, the Maryland League of Conservation Voters’ mission is more essential than ever before in history,” said President Bill Ferguson. “I’m honored to be named Legislator of the Year alongside House Speaker Jones. The Climate Solutions Act of 2022 is just a starting point, and the General Assembly has more to do in the future to secure the future health of all Marylanders. I want to thank the leadership of Maryland LCV for their years of tireless advocacy and work toward a future where all residents can benefit from clean air and water.”

“It’s an honor to receive the Legislator of the Year Award and recognition for the work the House has done to protect our natural resources and respond to climate change,” said Speaker Adrienne A. Jones. “Every Marylander should have clean air, clean water, and resilient communities. Thank you, Maryland League of Conservation Voters for this award and for your support as we continue to work towards a cleaner Maryland.”

Maryland LCV’s Legislator of the Year Award, established in 2012, honors environmental champions from the most recent legislative session. Awardees are selected based on leadership and commitment to promote and pass equitable laws and policies for clean water, healthy air, and a resilient climate. The 2021 awardee was Senator Cory McCray.  [full list of Legislator of the Year awardees here]

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Maryland LCV uses political action and education to fight for clean water, healthy air, and a resilient climate for everyone in Maryland. Maryland LCV is known for educating lawmakers and holding them accountable for their leadership and votes on key environmental issues. Their annual scorecard, along with other reports, helps inform voters about their legislators’ records.