|Member of the Maryland House of Delegates
from the 43rd district
January 8, 2003
|Ken Montague, Michael Dobson|
|Member of the Maryland House of Delegates
from the 44th district
January 12, 1983 - January 10, 1995
|Torey Brown, Frank Robey|
|Ann Marie Doory|
|Born||Curtis Stovall Anderson
October 12, 1949
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Relations||Shani Davis (cousin)|
|Children||Ambre Anderson, Curtis Ian, Damien, Christian|
Curtis Stovall Anderson (born October 12, 1949) is an American politician, lawyer and former broadcast journalist. He was first elected to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1983, is the chairman of the Baltimore City Delegation, and past chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland. After serving 12 years, he was elected again in 2002. He was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1992 (Clinton) and 2008 (Obama).
Anderson was born on October 12, 1949 to Leonard and Jean Anderson in Chicago, Illinois. His father, a graduate of Morgan State University, moved the family to Baltimore, in 1952, to take a job as the Dean of men at Morgan State University and assistant rector at the St. James' Episcopal Church. Anderson's parents divorced in 1957 and he and his two sisters were raised by his mother.
Anderson attended primary schools in Baltimore and Glencoe, Illinois. In 1964, he entered the Baltimore City College. He was the captain of the football and track teams and won a scholarship to Rutgers University. Anderson majored in political science and made the freshman and varsity football and freshman track teams. But in the fall of 1969, Anderson left Rutgers at the end of the semester. In 1973, he entered Morgan State College where he earned his bachelor's degree in political science. He also played on the legendary "Ten Bears" lacrosse team, the only black college lacrosse team in America. In 1982, after, his television career, he entered the University of Baltimore Law School where he earned his Juris Doctor.
Prior to running for the House of Delegates, Anderson anchored the news at channel 2, WMAR-TV, and channel 11, WBAL-TV, in Baltimore, Maryland. Anderson was first hired by WBAL in 1976 as a reporter where he regularly covered the state legislature, Baltimore City Hall, produced features and even boxed a round with Muhammad Ali as a feature story in 1978.
In 1980 Anderson was hired by WMAR-TV to be the station's weekend anchor and reporter. He covered events such as the Wayne Williams trial in Atlanta (1981) and the Cuban refugee influx in Pennsylvania. In April 1982, Anderson was let go by WMAR-TV following a 90-day labor strike.
Anderson graduated from the University of Baltimore School of Law in 1987 and passed the Maryland Bar in 1988. He joined the law firm of Murphy and Associates as a criminal defense attorney that same year. He opened his own practice in 1996 and has represented thousands of individuals in the Circuit and District courts in Baltimore City and 16 of Maryland's 23 counties.
In 1982, Anderson won a seat in the House of Delegates, finishing first in a crowded field of candidates which included four incumbents. He was sworn in January 1983 and assigned to the House Ways and Means committee.
After serving five years in the Maryland General Assembly, Anderson was elected chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland. As chairman he sponsored and saw passed Maryland's Minority Business Enterprise Act. One of the benefits of this act for minority business was increased participation in major state projects like the building of Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Nearly 20% of the contracts let for the construction of the new ballpark went to minority owned businesses. After 12 years in the House, Anderson ran for the Senate in 1994 but was defeated in the Democratic primary. He practiced law for the next 8 years. In 2002, he made a run for the House of Delegates. As before he was a non-incumbent running against four incumbents for three seats. Unlike his first race in 1982 where he beat all the incumbents and finished first, this time Anderson finished third with a razor-thin 100-vote margin of victory over 4th-place finisher incumbent Ken Montague. In the 2006 general election campaign, Anderson joined with 43rd district incumbents Senator Joan Carter Conway, and Delegates Maggie McIntosh and Ann Marie Doory to defeat a field of 6 other challengers.
Since 2003, Anderson has been known for his opposition to the introduction of slot machines in Annapolis. Delegate Anderson organized protests against slots, wrote newspaper editorials and took to the airwaves at several local radio and television stations to solidify opposition to bringing organized gambling into Maryland. In spite of strong support for slots by then Maryland Governor Robert Ehrlich, Anderson and his colleagues prevailed and a pro-slots bill never made it out of the House of Delegates though similar bills had passed the State Senate. In 2005, however, both chambers passed different pro-slots bills. In the House of Delegates the measure passed by a 71-66 vote. In 2007 new Governor, Martin O'Malley, hinted at some marginal support for slots as a possible new revenue source. Although Anderson and O'Malley share party affiliations, Anderson remained a staunch opponent of bringing slots into Maryland.
Anderson chairs of the House Judiciary's subcommittee on criminal justice, served on the House of Delegates' Special Committee on Drug and Alcohol and chairs the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland's committee on crime and justice. In 2003, Anderson was appointed to and currently serves on the Maryland State Commission on Criminal Sentencing Policy. In the 2007 session of the Maryland General Assembly, introduced measures to increase drug treatment funding while requiring the state's courts to refer first time misdemeanor drug users to treatment. The initiative mirrors those adopted on the west coast under California Proposition 36. Anderson's other bill in the drug area represents a major change in Maryland drug policy, HB992, would have repealed the state's without parole provisions from the sentences of second time non-violent drug felons. Referencing the fact that nearly 90% of those incarcerated in Maryland for drug felonies are of African-American descent, Anderson has sought to create a racially equitable solution to the drug problem. The Maryland State Commission of Sentencing Guidelines is also considering changing sentencing guidelines for low level felony drug offenders. Additionally, Anderson was the House of Delegates floor leader on legislation that would automatically expunge the records of the thousands individuals who have been arrested in Baltimore City without being charged with a crime. In 2006 more than 21,000 people, mostly African-Americans, were arrested in Baltimore City and then released hours later without being charged with a crime. Existing Maryland law would allow them to have their records expunged of these arrests but not without signing a written waiver of rights or waiting for three years. HB-10 would make the expungement automatic with no waiver, no fee and no waiting period. It passed the Maryland House of Delegates on March 7, 2007, by a vote of 130- and signed into law in April 2007.
Anderson was the primary sponsor of HB 1303-Vehicle Laws-Towing or removal from parking lots-Baltimore City, Baltimore County.(Chapter 462 of Laws enacted during the 1989 legislature) The bill was introduced following an epidemic of cars being towed from private lots in the Baltimore region, without warning to vehicle owners. The new law required each lot be posted with warnings, the possible cost of towing and the place to where the vehicle had been towed.
Following the 1989 Supreme Court decision in City of Richmond v. J.A. Croson Co. (ruling Richmond's MBE set asides unconstitutional), most states that had procurement laws for minority business (MBE) found that their laws were also unconstitutional. Anderson, then chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, sponsored HB 1540-Minority Business Procurement (Chapter 708 of Laws enacted during the 1990 legislature), creating a constitutional framework for MBE procurement in Maryland.
Also in 1990, Anderson was the primary and sole sponsor of HB 328 which allowed retired judges to be called back into service for up to 90 days to help alleviate crowded court dockets. (Chapter 154 of Laws enacted during the 1990 legislature)
Maryland's first comprehensive DNA Profile bill was sponsored by Anderson in 1991. The bill set up state standards to be followed when DNA evidence was sought to be introduced in criminal trials in Maryland. Anderson's HB 1150 was signed into law on May 24, 1991. (Ch 631).
During the 1992 session, Anderson's HB178 was signed into law. The bill required that interpreters, for non-English speaking defendants, be provided in all of Maryland's courts.
In 1994, Anderson introduced a bill to raise the age after which a Maryland public school student could dropout from age 16 to age 18. The bill failed, but the Maryland General Assembly passed the same bill in 2012.
Anderson also sponsored legislation that would require the state's forensic laboratories be strictly monitored. The bill, which was signed by the Governor in 2007, proposed to ensure that the scientific reliability of forensic testimony could not be challenged due to a lack of appropriate standards and basic protocols. (became law Chapter 147) That same year he was also the primary sponsor of HB 1071, creating child fatality review teams for the prevention of child deaths (became law Chapter 264)
During the 2008 legislative session Anderson sponsored the Custodial Interrogation Act which requires law enforcement officers to electronically record interrogations in murder and rape cases that resulted in confessions. The bill was signed into law by the Governor in May 2008.
During the 2009 session of the Maryland General Assembly, Anderson introduced two bills aimed at strengthening Maryland's drunk driving laws: HB330 (Manslaughter and Vehicular Manslaughter -Penalties) and HB 212 (Preliminary Breath Test - Evidence). Anderson was the primary sponsor of HB66, revamping and updating Maryland's theft statute (Chapter 655). he also sponsored several gun bills designed to decrease violent crime in Baltimore.
Anderson was the primary and sole sponsor of House Bill 1473 - Maryland's "BLUE Alert" system. A system similar to that of the AMBER alert but is activated when police officer has been killed or seriously wounded and the offender is still at large. Anderson's BLUE alert bill passed the House of Delegates with a 138-0 and passed the through the Maryland Senate with a 46-0 vote. Governor O'Malley signed the bill into law in May 2010, but then moved up its effective date by signing an executive order implementing the BLUE Alert system on June 22, 2010.
During the 2011 legislative session, Anderson was the sponsor of House Bill 241. Aimed at public safety, this bill added shotguns and rifles to the list of weapons for which a mandatory sentence is required. The bill also increased the sentencing to 15 years in prison. Anderson's House Bill 302, which also became law in 2011, changed Maryland's practice of parole approval. Maryland was one of the few states that left parole decisions, in life sentence cases, up to the Governor. Anderson's bill shifted those decisions to the parole board if the governor did not act on parole board recommendations.
As chairman of the Baltimore City Delegation, Anderson was responsible for the Delegation's most important bill of the year- HB 860 (Baltimore City Public Schools Construction and Revitalization Act of 2013). Signed by the Governor on May 16, 2013, the new law approved 1.1 billion dollars to construct new schools in Baltimore City.
Anderson was the primary sponsor of the Second Chance Act. Signed into law by Governor Hogan in May 2015, The new law will allow people with certain misdemeanor convictions have those convictions shielded from public view. Anderson was also the primary sponsor of a bill that repealed some of Maryland's mandatory minimum sentences for drug related felonies. The governor neither signed nor vetoed the bill, it was allowed to become law.
A Ten Bears movie would focus just on Morgan's team.
Clearly, the current practice of using prisons as a catch-all solution for social problems cannot continue.
Repealing the minimum-sentencing laws would allow judges to require treatment, particularly in the case of a low-level dealer who sells drugs to support an addiction
the Commission should develop a system of diversion from incarceration for low-level drug offenders
Advocates for repealing fixed terms say locking up nonviolent offenders instead of treating them is ineffective
Instead of calling for cameras to be used when suspects in custody are being questioned in 18 crime categories, as initially proposed, he told the committee the bill now requires it in four: murders, rapes, and first- and second-degree sex offenses.