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.
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.