Behind-the-Scenes Player Leaving Prince George’s Government

    A top-ranking Prince George’s County policy staffer is stepping down after more than a decade with county government.

    Brad Frome, who currently carries the title of director of Strategic Operations under County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks (D), will exit county government on May 21.

    “It’s time for a change,” Frome said in an interview.

    Frome, 44, has served in a variety of roles in Prince George’s government and politics. He started by working for then state Del.-Justin Ross (D-Prince George’s) for three years and also worked for the County Council for three years before joining Alsobrooks’ predecessor, former county executive Rushern L. Baker III (D), at the outset of his administration in 2010.

    Frome became a quiet but powerful behind-the-scenes player under Baker, often working on economic development projects like the Whole Foods supermarket in Riverdale and the new Prince George’s County Hospital. Baker would sometimes call him “the insurance man,” because having Frome in the room during critical meetings was like having an insurance policy – a guarantee that things would get done.

    John Erzen, a spokesman from Alsobrooks, said Frome was also a valued political and policy adviser to the new county executive. Frome was part of Alsobrooks’ kitchen cabinet as she launched her campaign for county executive.

    “It goes without saying that to have someone on our team when we came in who had not only the institutional knowledge but the level of expertise he had was invaluable to us,” Erzen said, crediting Frome for helping the new administration gain its footing on budgetary and policy matters and making its case in Annapolis.

    Frome grew up in suburban Philadelphia and came to Maryland to attend the University of Maryland – where Ross and Scott L. Peterson, a former spokesman for Baker who now works for Howard County Executive Calvin Ball (D), lived in his freshman dorm.

    Frome isn’t sure what he’s going to do next, but said he wants to take some time to reflect and explore his options. He’ll almost certainly wind up in the private sector – though he could return to government service some day.

    “If you’re going to do this job the way it should be done, it’s a relentless pace,” Frome said of his responsibilities with the county.

    He also paid tribute to Baker and Alsobrooks: “I think of how fortunate it is to work for two people you want your kids to grow up to be like.”

    Erzen said the Alsobrooks administration would likely try to replace Frome and would search for someone – or more than one person – who can “take an overarching look at everything and see how things fit together.”

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    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.