Jane Lawton

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Jane E Lawton
Jane Lawton (2007).jpg
Mayor, Town of Chevy Chase
In office
Maryland House of Delegates
In office
Preceded byJohn Hurson
Succeeded byAlfred C. Carr, Jr.
ConstituencyDistrict 18, Montgomery County
Personal details
Born(1944-05-24)May 24, 1944
Muskogee, Oklahoma
DiedNovember 29, 2007(2007-11-29) (aged 63)
Ronald Reagan Building, Washington, D.C.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Stephan E. Lawton
Relationsbrother John Neil England
ChildrenKathleen and Stephanie
ResidenceChevy Chase, Maryland
OccupationMontgomery County Cable Administrator

Jane Lawton (May 24, 1944 – November 29, 2007) was an American politician from Maryland and a member of the Democratic Party. The Jane E. Lawton community center, located in Leland Park in Chevy Chase, MD, was renamed in her memory on June 14, 2009.


Delegate Lawton was born in Muskogee, Oklahoma on May 24, 1944. At the time of her death she was serving in her first full term in the Maryland House of Delegates, representing Maryland's District 18 in Montgomery County. She was also serving on the Environmental Matters Committee.


Lawton attended the University of Oklahoma where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa. The Jane Lawton scholarship has been created to honor her memory through the President's Leadership Class.


After college she worked briefly for IBM. She also worked as Special Assistant to the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Carl Albert until the birth of her first child in 1974. She became a member of the Town of Chevy Chase Town Council in 1981, later becoming treasurer, then Chairperson (this position is now referred to as the Mayor of the Town). Later, she was Special Assistant to Neil Potter when he was County Executive of Montgomery County. After Doug Duncan succeeded Potter, she became the County Cable Administrator. In the State Legislature, She was originally appointed to fill the seat of former delegate John Hurson, but was elected in her own right in the fall of 2006. She passed two bills during her brief time in office, and two more were passed in her name the following term; one a Farms-to-Schools program she had been working on the previous session and planned to introduce in the 2008 legislative session.

Lawton died of unknown causes on the morning of November 29, 2007 [2]. She collapsed after giving a speech in downtown Washington. She was declared dead at George Washington Hospital Center.[1] Early reports that she had had a heart attack were based on speculation only. After she died, the political blogger Wonkette posted a satirical announcement that jokingly suggested that her death had been caused by "'representatives' of the cable industry," a reference to the speech she gave immediately prior to collapsing.[2]

Her campaign website no longer remains available at http://www.janelawton.org, but the guest book that was put up after her death on that website remains available through dreambook.com [3].

Legislative notes[edit]

  • voted for the Healthy Air Act in 2006 (SB154) [4]
  • voted in favor of increasing the sales tax by one percentage point to 6% - Tax Reform Act of 2007(HB2) [5]
  • voted in favor of in-state tuition for illegal immigrants in 2007 (HB6) [6]

Notes from "Maryland Manual Online". Maryland State Archives. 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-29.