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Madeleine Dean

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Madeleine Dean
Madeleine Dean Official Portrait 116th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 4th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2019 (2019-01-03)
Preceded byScott Perry
Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives
from the 153rd district
In office
April 24, 2012 (2012-04-24) – November 30, 2018 (2018-11-30)
Preceded byJosh Shapiro
Succeeded byBen Sanchez
Personal details
Born (1959-06-06) June 6, 1959 (age 61)
Glenside, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)PJ Cunnane
EducationMontgomery County Community College
La Salle University (BA)
Widener University (JD)
University of Pennsylvania
WebsiteHouse website

Madeleine Cunnane Dean (born June 6, 1959) is an American politician and the U.S. Representative[1] for Pennsylvania's 4th congressional district.[2] The district includes almost all of Montgomery County, an affluent suburban county north of Philadelphia.

Prior to being elected to Congress, Dean was a Democratic member of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, representing the 153rd district[3][4] in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

A Pennsylvania native, Dean was first elected to serve in the General Assembly in 2012 in a special election. Dean served on several committees, including Appropriations, Judiciary, Policy, Urban Affairs, State Government, and Finance, of which she was vice-chair.[4]

Early life and education

The youngest of seven children — five brothers and one sister — Madeleine Dean was born to Bob and Mary Dean in Glenside, Pennsylvania. Dean attended and was graduated from Abington Public School. She graduated magna cum laude from La Salle University, and earned her J.D. degree at Widener University and previously was a student at the Fels Institute of Government of the University of Pennsylvania.[5]

Professional career

After law school, Dean returned to the Philadelphia area and practiced law with the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers, going on to serve as executive director. She then opened a small, three-woman law practice in Glenside, and served as in-house counsel for her husband's growing bicycle business.[6]

While raising three young sons, Dean changed career paths and turned to teaching. She served 11 years as an assistant professor of English at her alma mater, La Salle University, in Philadelphia, where she taught composition, persuasive writing and rhetoric, business writing, legal writing, and ethics. In her private and professional life she has continued to write and is a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, The Patriot-News and other publications.[6]

Earlier political career

Dean got her start in politics soon after graduating from high school, when, at 18 she was elected to serve as a local committee-person.

She volunteered on her first campaign for Joe Hoeffel's re-election to the state legislature, for the same district seat she would later hold herself. It was on that campaign that she met her future husband, PJ Cunnane, himself a 19-year-old elected committee-person.[when?]

Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Having worked and volunteered in the political world for decades, and her children grown, Dean was asked to become a public servant herself, serving as Abington Township commissioner and soon thereafter ran for state representative in 2012.[7]

Since Dean was elected to the State House, she has prioritized social issues such as addiction, equal rights, access to healthcare, ethics, criminal justice reform, and gun violence.

Following the shooting at Sandy Hook, Dean co-founded the gun violence prevention caucus, PA SAFE Caucus, with Rep. Dan Frankel. PA SAFE Caucus is self-described as an active coalition of legislators and advocates dedicated to curbing the problem of illegal guns.[8]

In 2015, Dean was appointed to the Governor's Commission for Women.[9] A commission designed to advise the governor on policies and legislation that promote equality issues ranging from sexual assault to business initiatives.[9]

In 2017, Dean was elected to serve as chair of the Southeast Delegation of the Pennsylvania House Democrats, composed of 22 House Democrats representing nine counties.[10]



Dean stated in 2014: "We know that the number one issue with voters is education and how we fund our public schools". Regarding the Pennsylvania education budget for 2013, the then-state Representative said: "How we educate our kids tells us how our economy will be." In that same instance, she highlighted the issue of public school funding.[11]

U.S. House of Representatives


2020 General Election

In February 2018, after a significant change in Pennsylvania's congressional districts mandated by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, Dean announced she would end her campaign for Lieutenant Governor and instead run for Congress in the 4th District.[12] The district had previously been the 13th, represented by two-term fellow Democrat Brendan Boyle. However, Boyle had his home in Philadelphia, along with all of the 13th's share of the city, drawn into the 2nd District, and opted to run for reelection there.

On May 15, 2018, Dean defeated two challengers - Shira Goodman and former Congressman Joe Hoeffel - in the Democratic Primary.[13] She went on to defeat Republican Dan David with 63.45% of the vote to his 36.55%.[14] She was one of four Democratic women elected to Congress from Pennsylvania in 2018. The others were Mary Gay Scanlon, Chrissy Houlahan and Susan Wild. The state's delegation had previously been all male.


Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Electoral history

Democratic primary results
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Madeleine Dean 42,625 72.6
Democratic Shira Goodman 9,645 16.4
Democratic Joe Hoeffel 6,431 11.0
Total votes 58,701 100.0
Pennsylvania's 4th congressional district, 2018
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Madeleine Dean 211,524 63.5
Republican Dan David 121,467 36.5
Total votes 332,991 100.0
Democratic hold

Other political campaigns

Lieutenant Governor

In November 2017, Dean announced her candidacy for Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania, facing, among others, incumbent Mike Stack in the Democratic primary.[15] She dropped out to run for Congress.

Personal life

She lives in Abington Township (with a Jenkintown address), with her husband P.J. Cunnane; they have three grown sons and three grandchildren. Her son, Pat, was senior writer and deputy director of messaging in the Obama White House.[16]

See also


  1. ^ "Pennsylvania Election Results: Fourth House District". The New York Times. Retrieved 2018-11-07.
  2. ^ "Suburban Philly lawmaker drops lieutenant governor bid to run for Congress". Penn Live. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  3. ^ "Representative Madeleine Dean's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 22 November 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Madeleine Dean". Pennsylvania House of Representatives. Retrieved 22 November 2012.
  5. ^ "Biography". Rep. Madeleine Dean. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  6. ^ a b "mad4pa". mad4pa. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  7. ^ Freeman, Jarreau (November 6, 2012). "ELECTION 2012: Madeleine Dean defeats Nick Mattiacci, Ken Krawchuk for the 153rd seat". Times Chronicle. Retrieved January 18, 2018.
  8. ^ "Lawmakers, gun-safety advocates announce formation of PA SAFE". PA SAFE Caucus. 2016-03-15. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  9. ^ a b "Wolf Names 26 to the Pennsylvania Commission for Women". Governor Tom Wolf. 2015-10-07. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  10. ^ "House Democrats' Southeast Delegation leadership team elected". Southeast Delegation. 2017-01-04. Retrieved 2018-01-18.
  11. ^ Pennington, Maura. "PA lawmakers put education at top of agenda in election year". Watchdog. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  12. ^ Micek, John L. (February 22, 2018). "Suburban Philly lawmaker drops lieutenant governor bid to run for Congress". The Patriot-News. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  13. ^ "Pennsylvania Primary Election Results". The New York Times. May 17, 2018. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  14. ^ "2018 General Election: Representative in Congress". Pennsylvania Department of State. November 6, 2016. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  15. ^ Navratil, Liz (November 29, 2017). "State Rep. Madeleine Dean to run for lieutenant governor". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved November 11, 2018.
  16. ^ Kurtz, Judy (April 18, 2018). "Former Obama staffer dishes on White House life in 'West Winging It'". The Hill. Retrieved January 5, 2019.

External links

Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Preceded by
Josh Shapiro
Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives
from the 153rd district

Succeeded by
Ben Sanchez
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Scott Perry
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 4th congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Sharice Davids
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Antonio Delgado
This page was last edited on 13 August 2020, at 14:58
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