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Social Worker Sen. Mikulski Now Longest Serving Woman in Senate

Sen. Barbara Mikulski. Photo courtesy of the Washington Post.

Cheers to the Washington Post for this profile of Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), a social worker who will become the longest serving female senator this year.

Mikulski, who was a social worker for Catholic Charities and the Baltimore City Department of Social Services, was first elected to the Senate in 1987. She was sworn in for a fifth term on Jan. 5.

There were few female senators when Mikulski first came to the Senate and many male colleagues were skeptical of her. So Mikulski said she had to work very hard.

Mikulski has developed a reputation for mentoring other female lawmakers, whether they are Democrat or Republican. She is also willing to work with Republicans to meet legislative goals.

“Maybe it’s because she’s a social worker, maybe because she’s a woman – she understands relationships are everything,” said Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA). “She helps you see areas of common interest so you can find solutions.”

Mikulski earned a master’s degree in social work from the  University of Maryland. She became an activist social worker and community organizer when she successfully fought plans to build a 16-lane highway through Baltimore’s Fells Point and Canton neighborhoods.

Mikulsi is a lead sponsor of the Dorothy I. Height and Whitney M. Young, Jr. Social Work Reinvestment Act. To learn more about Mikulski and that legislation, click here.

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