John “Johnny O” Olszewski Jr.
To call 36-year-old John “Johnny O” Olszewski Jr. a rising star in Maryland politics is quite an understatement.
Olszewski was still in high school when he started his career in public service, serving as a student member of the Baltimore County Board of Education while enrolled at Sparrow’s Point High School in Dundalk.
While still an undergraduate student at Goucher College, Olszewski was elected to a term on the Maryland Democratic Central Committee. By 2006, he was a member of the state House of Delegates, appointed to fill an open seat and later that same year winning an election on his own.
Among a host of roles, Olszewski — who also spent seven years teaching in Baltimore County Public Schools — served on a task force that studied raising the age of compulsory education to 18 and was a member of a commission to develop a model for funding higher education in his nine years as a delegate. He was the youngest person ever to serve as head of the Baltimore County delegation.
After a virtually uninterrupted string of successful political ventures, Olszewski tasted defeat in 2014 when he lost a bid for a seat in the Maryland Senate. Undeterred, he successfully ran for a four-year term as Baltimore County Executive in 2018 and was inaugurated in December.
Olszewski, who lists openness, honesty, transparency and collaboration as the keys to his success, said he’s working on building a better Baltimore County by changing the way the government serves its citizens.
“I will introduce my first budget on April 15,” he said. “It addresses a structural shortfall while supporting Baltimore County’s commitment to quality education, school construction, economic opportunity, healthy and safe communities, and transparent and accountable government.”
After receiving his bachelor’s degree from Goucher, Olszewski went on to earn a master’s degree at George Washington University and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
Among a long list of honors, Olszewski was named to the 20 in Their Twenties list by The Daily Record in 2012 and received the Jennifer Mitchell Reed ‘86 Award from Goucher College in 2014.