Peter Beilenson to Run for Baltimore County School Board

Dr. Peter Beilenson, the former Baltimore City health commissioner who has held a variety of high-profile roles in public health over the last quarter century, is planning to run for a seat on the Baltimore County Board of Education.

Beilenson has created a campaign website and has begun to inform friends of his decision to run.

Dr. Peter Beilenson

This will be the first-ever election for Baltimore County school board members. Up until now, the board members, with the exception of the student member, who serves for just one year, have been appointed to five-year terms by the governor.

Beilenson is planning to run for a seat in the 5th councilmanic district, according to his website. Julie C. Henn, who was appointed to the seat by Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan (R) in December 2016, has already filed to run for the seat.

Only five candidates total have filed to run for the seven elected school board seats as of Thursday morning. The filing deadline is Feb. 27. Four school board members will continue to be nominated by the governor.

This will not be Beilenson’s first bid for office: He ran unsuccessfully for Congress in the 3rd District in 2006, finishing second to now-Rep. John Sarbanes in the Democratic primary. His father, the late Anthony Beilenson, was a 10-term congressman, representing a Los Angeles-area district from 1977 to 1997.

Peter Beilenson served as Baltimore City health commissioner from 1992 to 2005. After losing the congressional race, he served as Howard County’s health officer from 2007 to 2012. He then spent five years as CEO of Evergreen Health Co-op, an insurance co-op he founded under the federal Affordable Care Act to offer low-cost health care. The co-op went into receivership last year.

Beilenson has also been on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University for 23 years. He has five children, the youngest of whom attends Dumbarton Middle School.

Josh Kurtz
Co-founder and Editor Josh Kurtz is the leading chronicler of Maryland politics and government. He began covering the State House in 1995 for The Gazette newspapers, and has been writing about state and local politics ever since. He later became an editor at Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper, and spent eight years at E&E News, an online subscription-only publisher of news websites covering energy and environmental issues. For seven of those years, he led a staff of 20 reporters at E&E Daily, which covers energy and environmental policy on Capitol Hill and in national politics. For 6 1/2 years he wrote a weekly column on state politics for Center Maryland and has written for several other Maryland publications as well. Kurtz has given speeches and appeared on TV and radio shows about Maryland politics through the years.


  1. Bielenson is a carpetbagger, seeking positions in public office where he has the best chance of selection. Health commissioner of Baltimore City and Howard County, unsuccessful run for Congress in the 3rd District. Now, he wants to be on the BOE of BCPS. The current BOE and, especially, the interim superintendent, seem to have difficulty understanding financial documents. To me, Bielenson is likely to have problem since he was unable to manage Evergreen Health Co-op, or at least surround himself with individuals who could, to keep it out of receivership. The son of a 10-year (career to me) politician? No thank you.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here