Newsmaker

September 10, 2006

Lu Pierson

In the News

Pierson is the president of the League of Women Voters of Maryland, a nonpartisan organization that encourages civic participation. The league sponsored a series of political candidate debates on Maryland Public Television leading up to Tuesday's primary, and has compiled a voters guide on its Web site, www.lwvmd.org.

Career highlights

Pierson began working for the Baltimore City league as an office manager in 1987 and became a member of the state board of directors in 2001. She has been president since 2005. The Aug. 31 league-sponsored Democratic debate for U.S. Senate drew attention when several candidates not invited to attend staged a demonstration, and American University history professor Allan J. Lichtman was arrested for trespass. Pierson defended the league's policy of including only those candidates who had received at least 15 percent support of likely voters in a major state poll. She said her favorite media quote related to the protest described her as "beleaguered but gracious."

Personal

Pierson is a 1971 graduate of University of Maryland, College Park and works as a grants administrator for four foundations in Baltimore. She is a member of the Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland, and a past member of the State Board of Elections. She is married to W. Michel Pierson, a Baltimore Circuit Court judge. They have three adult children.

Philosophy

"Some people don't vote because they think they don't know enough. The league aims to eliminate that excuse. Voting is good for you. It's just as important as eating your vegetables and you only have to do it a couple of times every two years."

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