Exec Director at Md. Democratic Party Steps Down

    Ben Smith, who served as executive director of the Maryland Democratic Party since December of 2018, has resigned.

    Yvette Lewis, who took over as party chair several weeks ago, told Democratic leaders of Smith’s decision in an email Thursday obtained by Maryland Matters.

    Lewis said she was “grateful” for Smith’s service, but offered no details about his departure.

    “As Democrats, we are in the middle of a season of change,” she wrote. “I am deeply committed to seeing us through the transitions and challenges that lie ahead. I believe that when this journey is over — together we will put a Democrat in the White House and in the Governor’s Mansion.”

    Smith, former chairman of the Baltimore City Democratic Central Committee, became executive director of the state party when Maya Rockeymoore Cummings was elected party chair. But Rockeymoore Cummings resigned late last fall to run in the special election to replace her husband, the late U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D), and Lewis, a former party chair, took over.

    One Democratic source said Lewis has already picked a replacement for Smith, but is not ready to announce her choice.

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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.