Oberlin's Women: A Legacy of Leadership & Activism

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (1970-present, OC 1992) is a politician, former mayor, and attorney. She grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, where she attended Western High School. After graduating in 1988, she enrolled at Oberlin College, where she received a B.A. in political science in 1992. Returning to Maryland, Rawlings-Blake enrolled at the University of Maryland and completed her Juris Doctor in 1995. She was admitted to the Maryland Bar in 1996 and the Federal Bar in 1997.

Rawlings-Blake worked as an administrative law attorney for the Legal Aid Bureau between 1997 and 1998. She was also a member of the Baltimore City Democratic Central Committee between 1990 and 1998. Rawlings-Blake became a staff attorney for the Office of the Public Defender in 1998 and worked there until 2006. She was elected to the Baltimore City Council in 1995. She was youngest member to be elected and stayed in the position until 2010. In 1999, she was elected vice president of the Baltimore City Council. She held the position until 2007, when she became the president of the organization.

In 2010, Rawlings-Blake was elected the 49th mayor of Baltimore, which made her the second woman to hold the position. She left the position in 2016 and started her own law firm, SRB & Associates. In addition to work as mayor, Rawlings-Blake was the secretary of the National Conference of Democratic Mayors in 2011. She was the president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors between 2015 and 2016.

Rawlings-Blake has been a member of many professional organizations, including the Maryland State Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, and the Maryland Municipal League. She has served on the Board of Trustees for the Walter Arts Museum, the Economic Alliance of Great Baltimore, the College Bound Foundation, and many other organizations. She was awarded the Shirley Chisholm Memorial Award Trailblazer from the Washington, D.C. chapter of the National Congress of Black Women in 2009 and the National Leadership Award in Public Service from the National Forum for Black Public Administrators in 2012.

“Baltimore City, Maryland: Executive Branch: Mayors.” Maryland Manual On-Line. November 03, 2017.   https://msa.maryland.gov/msa/mdmanual/36loc/bcity/former/html/msa14500.html

“Her Experience.” SRB & Associates. Accessed July 2, 2020. https://www.srbandassociates.com/#her-experience

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