Mary Cheh

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Mary Cheh in 2010

Mary M. Cheh (born 1950[1]) is a Democratic politician from Washington, D.C. In November 2006, she won a seat on the Washington, D.C. City Council representing Ward 3.

Background and family[edit]

Mary Cheh was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey. The first in her family to graduate from high school, Cheh is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Douglass College and has law degrees from Rutgers University and Harvard University.

Cheh has been a resident of Ward 3 since 1980. She has two daughters, Jane and Nora, who were born and raised in the District, attending Murch Elementary School and Georgetown Day School. Both are lawyers.

Professional experience[edit]

Upon graduation from law school, Cheh served as a law clerk to the Hon. Richard Hughes, chief justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court. Cheh then joined the Washington office of Fried, Frank, Shriver, Harris & Kempleman as an associate. In 1979, Cheh joined the George Washington University Law School, becoming the Elyce Zenoff Research Professor of Law.[2] There, she has received teaching and service awards and serves as a member and former chair of the George Washington Law Public Interest Committee.

In 1983, Cheh took a sabbatical to do pro bono work in South Africa for the Centre for Applied Legal Studies. Then in 1986, she served as a Special Assistant United States Attorney in D.C. She has been a visiting professor at the famed Concord School of Law, University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill and the University of California – Hastings.

Cheh has also served as a consultant to the National Institute of Justice and the President’s Commission on Organized Crime, and she chaired the subcommittee on criminal justice for the D.C. Circuit Court’s Task Force on Gender.[3]

She currently serves as a member of the Rules Committee of the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, on the Board of Directors of the National Institute of Military Justice, and as a member of the ACLU Litigation Screening Committee. She has been and continues to be a frequent speaker and media commentator on legal affairs. And, aside from her regular coursework at GW Law, she also teaches bar review lectures during the summer months.

City Council[edit]

Cheh was first elected to the Council of the District of Columbia in 2006, defeating her Republican opponent Theresa Conroy.[4] Cheh replaced Kathy Patterson, who unsuccessfully ran for the seat of Chair of the Council. Cheh was reelected in 2010 by a substantial margin over Republican candidate David Hedgepeth.[5]

As Councilmember, Cheh has chaired several committees, currently serving as Chair of the Committee on Transportation and the Environment.[6] Previously, she chaired the Committee on Public Services and Consumer Affairs and the Committee on Government Operations.

Outside of her role as City Council Member which pays $130,000 annually, Cheh earns an additional $207,263 from George Washington University plus $24,500 for lectures and royalties. [7]

Cheh served as Chair Pro Tempore from 2010 until 2012, when she became the temporary chair due to the resignation of Chairman Kwame Brown on June 6, 2012.[8] She stepped down from that role when Phil Mendelson was elected chair on June 13, 2012.

During her time on the Council, Cheh has introduced over 850 separate bills and resolutions.[9] And she has led five major Council investigations: CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield’s failure to comply with its nonprofit mission,[10] 2008 election electronic voting failures[11] Mayoral personnel practices,[12] the improper donation of District fire trucks to the Dominican Republic,[13] and procurement practices at the Office of the Chief Technology Officer.[14]

Cheh has authored several comprehensive reform measures. The Healthy Schools Act of 2010 makes breakfast free to all DCPS and public charter school students; enhances the nutrition of school meals by including more whole grains, a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, less fat, and less sodium; requires schools to serve locally-grown, unprocessed foods in school meals whenever possible; and increases the amount of physical activity and health education required of students.[15] The Omnibus Election Reform Act of 2009 allows for pre-registration for voters who will be 18 at the time of the next election, provides for early voting, and permits individuals to vote on Election Day. And the Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008 created the District of Columbia Sustainable Energy Utility, which administers sustainable energy programs in the District.

In this legislative period, Cheh introduced the Taxicab Service Improvement Amendment Act of 2012, which requires taxis in the District to use GPS, credit card readers and modern meters, and uniform dome lights and color schemes. She similarly introduced emergency measures to keep application-based services like Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar street legal.[16]

Committees[edit]

Cheh currently sits on five committees:

  • Committee on Government Operations and the Environment (Chair)
  • Committee on Aging and Community Affairs
  • Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary
  • Committee on Public Services and Consumer Affairs
  • Committee on Health

Legislation[edit]

  • B17-0043 Green Building Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0099 Clean Cars Act of 2008
  • B17-0261 Heat Wave Safety Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0433 Taxicab Hybrid Technology Vehicle Expansion Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0435 Green Schools Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0492 Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008
  • B17-0493 Loretta Carter Hanes Pesticide Consumer Notification Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0503 Compliance Unit Establishment Act of 2008
  • B17-0578 Water Pollution Reduction Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0670 Green Business Recognition Act of 2008
  • B17-0701 Energy-Efficient Tax Holiday Act of 2008
  • B17-0798 Heat Wave Safety Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0910 Carbon Trading Pilot Program Act of 2008
  • B17-0919 Clean and Affordable Energy Emergency Act of 2008
  • B18-0064 Lead Hazard Prevention and Elimination Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0150 Anacostia River Clean Up and Protection Act of 2009
  • B18-0175 Smart Lighting Act of 2009
  • B18-0239 Unused Pharmaceutical Safe Disposal Act of 2009
  • B18-0396 Sustainable Energy Utility Emergency Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0492 Clean and Affordable Energy Act Energy Efficiency Program Fund Balance Transfer Authorization Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0498 Wildlife Protection Act of 2010
  • B18-0521 Human and Environmental Health Protection Act of 2010
  • B18-0596 Winter Sidewalk Safety Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0665 Energy Efficiency Financing Emergency Act of 2010
  • B18-0729 Renewable Energy Incentive Program Fund Balance Rollover Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0737 Residential Aid Discount Subsidy Stabilization Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0786 Solar Thermal Incentive Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0954 Heat Wave Safety Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0971 Heat Wave Safety Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-1068 Solar Collector Certification Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-1092 Brownfield Revitalization Amendment Act of 2010
  • B19-0010 Distributed Generation Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0321 Heat Wave Safety Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0384 Distributed Generation Emergency Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0463 Green Building Technical Corrections Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0569 Green Building Compliance, Technical Corrections and Clarification Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0643 Pesticide Education and Control Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0715 Community Renewables Energy Act of 2012
  • B19-0749 Energy Innovation and Savings Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0769 Water Quality Assurance Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-1032 Construction and Demolition Waste Recycling Accountability Act of 2012
  • B19-1076 Renewable Energy Incentive Program Emergency Amendment Act of 2012
  • B20-0057 Community Renewable Energy Act of 2013
  • B20-0119 Coal-Fired Power Prohibition Act of 2013
  • B17-0125 Retail Service Station Clarification Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0131 Keeping D.C. Warm Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0132 Payday Loan Consumer Protection Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0142 Retail Service Station Clarification Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0166 Bank Charter Modernization Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0167 Mortgage Disclosure Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0168 Trans Free DC Act of 2007
  • B17-0179 Conversion Fee Clarification and Technical Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0197 Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008
  • B17-0211 Energy Efficiency Standards Act of 2007
  • B17-0257 Bank Charter Modernization Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0259 Retail Class Exemption Clarification Emergency Act of 2007
  • B17-0261 Heat Wave Safety Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0322 Private Employee Whisleblower Protection Act of 2007
  • B17-0434 Financial Literacy Council Establishment Act of 2007
  • B17-0474 MRSA Infection Prevention Act of 2007
  • B17-0476 Reciprocal and Insurance Interchange Act of 2007
  • B17-0490 Electronic Mail Public Record Clarification Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0492 Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008
  • B17-0493 Loretta Carter Hanes Pesticide Consumer Notification Act of 2008
  • B17-0497 The Pawnshop Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0503 Compliance Unit Establishment Act of 2008
  • B17-0578 Water Pollution Reduction Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0620 Conversion Fee Clarification Emergency Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0652 Vending Regulation Emergency Act of 2008
  • B17-0671 Money Transmitters Discloser Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0690 Expanding Opportunities for Street Vending Around the Baseball Stadium Emergency Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0701 Energy Efficient Appliance Tax Holiday Act of 2008
  • B17-0778 Rent Control Protection Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-1036 Retail Service Station Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-1093 Retail Service Station Emergency Amendment Act of 2008
  • B18-0064 Lead Hazard Prevention and Elimination Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0089 Retail Service Station Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0103 Insurance Claims Consumer Protection Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0104 Tenant Access to Justice Reform Act of 2009
  • B18-0131 Restaurant Hygiene Transparency Act of 2009
  • B18-0132 Trans Free DC Act of 2009
  • B18-0233 Whisleblower Protection Amendment Act of 2007
  • B18-0278 Chemotherapy Pill Coverage Act of 2009
  • B18-0323 Gift Card Protection Act of 2009
  • B18-0394 Residential Aid Discount Subsidy Stabilization Emergency Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0451 Artist Protection Act of 2010
  • B18-0493 Residential Aid Discount Subsidy Stabilization Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0516 Financial Protection Amendment Act of 2008
  • B18-0521 Human and Environmental Health Protection Act of 2010
  • B18-0564 Healthy Schools Act of 2010
  • B18-0713 Snap Expansion Act of 2010
  • B18-0893 The Anti SLAPP Act of 2010
  • B18-1091 Tenant Security Deposits Clarification Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-1092 Brownfield Revitalization Amendment Act of 2010
  • B19-0009 The Reliable Electric Service Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0089 Unsolicited Automatic Telephone Call Act of 2011
  • B19-0143 Workplace Wellness Act of 2011
  • B19-0167 Insurance Claims Consumer Protection Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0299 Retail Service Station Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0475 Assault of Bicyclist Prevention Act of 2011
  • B19-0581 Consumer Protection Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0616 Fire and Emergency Medical Services Employee Presumptive Disability Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0630 Taxi Service Improvement Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0631 District of Columbia Controlled Substances Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0643 Pesticide Education and Control Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0715 Community Renewables Energy Act of 2012
  • B19-0769 Water Quality Assurance Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0798 Brokers License Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0879 Underground Utility Act of 2012
  • B19-0881 Telemedicine Reimbursement Act of 2012
  • B20-0049 Workplace Wellness Act of 2013
  • B20-0074 Residential Lease Omnibus Amendment Act of 2013
  • B20-0075 District Contracting Price Reasonableness Assurance Amendment Act of 2013
  • B20-0077 Rental Housing Consumer Protection Act of 2013
  • B20-0111 Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2013
  • B20-0226 Reporting of Hospital Acquired Infections Amendment Act of 2013
  • B17-0096 Smoking Restriction Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0168 Trans Free DC Act of 2007
  • B17-0172 Drug Free Zone Designation Clarification Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0197 Accrued Sick and Safe Leave Act of 2008
  • B17-0308 Free Clinic Assistance Program Extension Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0323 Emergency Care for Sexual Assault Victims Act of 2008
  • B17-0469 Clinical Trials Insurance Coverage Act of 2008
  • B17-0470 MRSA Infection Prevention Act of 2007
  • B17-0493 Loretta Carter Hanes Pesticide Consumer Notification Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0523 Free Clinic Assistance Program Extension Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2007
  • B17-0635 AED Installation for Safe Recreation and Exercise Amendment Act of 2008
  • B17-0700 Healthy D.C. Act of 2008
  • B17-0934 Medical Insurance Empowerment Amendment Act of 2008
  • B18-0064 Lead Hazard Prevention and Elimination Amendment Act of 2010
  • B18-0127 Blood Donation Expansion Act of 2010
  • B18-0131 Restaurant Hygiene Transparency Act of 2009
  • B18-0132 Trans Free D.C. Act of 2009
  • B18- 0225 Medical Insurance Empowerment Emergency Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0239 Unused Pharmaceutical Safe Disposal Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0278 Chemotherapy Pill Coverage Act of 2009
  • B18-0450 Healthcare Equality Reform Act of 2009
  • B18-0521 Human and Environmental Health Protection Act of 2010
  • B18-0568 Hospital and Medical Services Corporation Regulatory Temporary Amendment Act of 2009
  • B18-0761 Department of Parks and Recreation Fitness Curriculum Act of 2010
  • B18-0792 Reasonable Health Insurance Ratemaking and Healthcare Reform Act of 2010
  • B18-0967 Food, Environmental, and Economic Development in the District of Columbia Act of 2010
  • B18-1111 Brownfield Revitalization Emergency Amendment Act of 2010
  • B19-0035 Restaurant Hygiene Transparency Act of 2011
  • B19-0143 Workplace Wellness Act of 2011
  • B19-0144 Healthy Schools Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0161 Service Animals Access Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0213 Commission on African American Affairs Establishment Act of 2012
  • B19-0224 Medicaid Provider Fraud Prevention Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0402 Healthy Schools Emergency Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0616 Fire and Emergency Medical Services Employee Presumptive Disability Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0631 District of Columbia Controlled Substances Amendment Act of 2011
  • B19-0643 Pesticide Education and Control Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0711 Fresh Healthy Mobile Cart Vending Pilot in Underserved Areas Emergency Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0769 Water Quality Assurance Amendment Act of 2012
  • B19-0804 Contract No. DCHC-2008-D-5052 Modification Approval and Payment Authorization Emergency Act of 2012
  • B19-0881 Telemedicine Reimbursement Act of 2012
  • B19-0930 Healthy Parks Act of 2012
  • B20-0049 Workplace Wellness Act of 2013
  • B20-0050 Telemedicine Reimbursement Act of 2013
  • B20-0111 Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2013
  • B20-0202 Insurance Claims Consumer Protection Second Amendment Act of 2013
  • B20-0226 Reporting of Hospital Acquired Infections Amendment Act of 2013
  • B20-0227 Children’s Oral Healthcare Amendment Act of 2013

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The George Washington University Law School [profile]". Martindale.com. Retrieved 2008-08-02. 
  2. ^ GW Law - Faculty Directory
  3. ^ Nimj.org
  4. ^ Election Profile - D.C. Council, Ward 3 (washingtonpost.com)
  5. ^ http://projects.washingtonpost.com/elections/2010/dc/city-councilor/1651/
  6. ^ Committee on Transportation and the Environment | Council of the District of Columbia
  7. ^ Evans, Cheh make most money outside D.C. Council - Newsroom
  8. ^ Cheh replaces Evans as D.C. Council chair pro tempore | WashingtonExaminer.com
  9. ^ DC Council
  10. ^ Cheh Calls for Public Forums on CareFirst - D.C. Wire - The Washington Post
  11. ^ D.C. City Council investigates voting malfunction in primary - The GW Hatchet
  12. ^ http://www.afro.com/sections/news/washington/story.htm?storyid=72521
  13. ^ D.C. Wire - Nickles wants council's firetruck probe terminated
  14. ^ Office of Chief Technology Officer relied too much on under-qualified firms, report says - Washington Business Journal
  15. ^ D.C. Healthy Schools Act | Tackling childhood obesity and hunger in Washington, DC
  16. ^ Cheh, Evans pass legislation to protect Uber from city regulations - Newsroom

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Council of the District of Columbia
Preceded by
Kathleen Patterson
Ward 3 Member, Council of the District of Columbia
2007 – present
Incumbent