Press Club Luncheon Monday, November 20, 2023

The Honorable Josh Shapiro

Governor of Pennsylvania

Josh grew up in Pennsylvania, watching his parents serve their community — his father was a pediatrician, and his mother was an educator. Their example inspired Josh to enter into public service, and from a young age, Josh recognized that standing up for others was how he wanted to spend his career. After marrying his high-school sweetheart Lori and welcoming their first child, Josh returned to his hometown and successfully ran for State Representative. As Representative, Josh helped write and pass some of the toughest ethics laws in state history. His work earned him a reputation as a rare public servant willing to take on the status quo — “a blast of oxygen in the smoke-choked back rooms of quid-pro-quo Harrisburg.”

Then, as Chairman of the Board of Commissioners in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania’s third-largest, Josh led a fiscal and ethical turnaround. Before he took office, Montgomery County had a $10 million budget deficit and an underfunded pension for county employees. Josh put the county back on solid financial footing, took early steps to combat the heroin epidemic, helped the first LGBTQ+ couples in Pennsylvania marry, and fired Wall Street money managers to save taxpayers and retirees millions.

In 2016, Josh successfully ran to be Pennsylvania’s Attorney General. As Attorney General, he has restored integrity to an office badly in need of reform and taken on big fights for the people. He has proven to Pennsylvanians he can bring people together to solve tough problems and is unafraid to enforce the law without fear or favor.

Josh exposed the Catholic Church’s decades-long cover up of child sexual abuse, identifying 301 predator priests and thousands of victims — and spurring investigations across the United States. He forced an agreement between two of the Commonwealth’s largest insurance companies, protecting health care access for nearly 2 million Pennsylvanians, and he has repeatedly gone to court to defend Pennsylvanians’ reproductive rights and a woman’s right to choose.

He has held more than 100 corrupt officials, Republicans and Democrats alike, accountable for breaking the law. Working with law enforcement partners at the local, state, and federal level, he’s arrested thousands of mid- and high-level drug dealers while getting thousands of illegal guns off our streets.

During the 2020 presidential election, Josh protected the right to vote and defended Pennsylvania’s election result, winning in court dozens of times before and after Election Day. He continues to call out the dangerous lies that undermine our democracy and provide steady, strong, and competent leadership to protect voting rights in Pennsylvania.

In January 2021, Josh was sworn in for his second term as Attorney General. He arrested more than 8,000 drug dealers while investigating and suing pharmaceutical companies and the CEOs who knowingly perpetuated the opioid crisis to line their own pockets. He stood up for everyday consumers, seniors who’ve been scammed, and students preyed upon by private lenders by obtaining over $328 million in relief to Pennsylvanians who have been ripped off. He led on criminal justice reform, bringing activists and law enforcement together to launch a new statewide police misconduct database, taking on employers who steal from Pennsylvania workers.

In November 2022, Josh made history as the highest vote-getter in Pennsylvania gubernatorial history. Alongside his running mate Austin Davis, Josh is working with every Pennsylvanian to move our Commonwealth forward.

Josh and Lori are the proud parents of Sophia, Jonah, Max, and Reuben.

PA Press Club Luncheon Monday, October 30, 2023

The Honorable Matt Bradford

PA House Majority Leader

Matt Bradford proudly represents the citizens of central Montgomery County, while serving in Democratic leadership as the House Majority Leader. Previously, he served in leadership as Chair of the House Appropriations Committee from 2018-2023, ensuring taxpayer dollars were invested and used responsibly in the state budget to provide the best quality of life for all Pennsylvanians.

Prior to being elected by his peers as Appropriations Chair, Matt served for two years as Chair of the House State Government Committee and spent eight years as a member of the Appropriations Committee, where he became known for pushing back against harsh cuts to public education funding, advocating for good, family-sustaining jobs and quality healthcare. As a father of four, Matt has seen firsthand the vitally important role a school plays in shaping children’s lives and has dedicated his work as an elected official to ensuring all kids have access to high-quality public schools.

A lifelong resident of southeastern Pennsylvania, Matt earned both his undergraduate and law degrees from Villanova University. During his time at Villanova, Matt volunteered as a local CYO basketball coach and president of the College Democrats.

As a law student, Matt developed a keen interest in advocating for the rights and needs of workers. He participated in the Union Summer program and, in 2003, earned a competitive Peggy Browning Fund Fellowship that allowed him to work with AFSCME on important labor law and policy issues. Matt went on to work with the United Steelworkers’ Office of General Counsel, where he continued to advocate for the safe, fair treatment of workers.

In 2006, Governor Ed Rendell appointed Matt to serve as municipal administrator and chief executive officer of Norristown Borough. Matt, who at the time was working as a litigator at a Philadelphia law firm, left his job and committed himself to serving the community. In less than three years, Matt led the municipality away from bankruptcy, securing public and private investments and overseeing major improvements to public services.

In 2009, Matt fused his passion for politics with his commitment to working families when he was elected to represent the citizens of the 70th Legislative District. He remains deeply committed to the community’s long-term success.

In addition to serving in the General Assembly, Matt is of counsel at a municipal law firm and continues to assist local public officials in confronting the pressing policy issues that impact hardworking Pennsylvanians.

Matt is an avid Philadelphia sports fan. He lives in Worcester Township with his wife, Renee, and their four children.

Next PA Press Club Luncheon – Monday September 18, 2023

Representative Bryan Cutler

Pennsylvania House Republican Leader

Serving his eighth term in Pennsylvania General Assembly, Bryan Cutler represents the 100th Legislative District in Lancaster County. In June 2020, he was elected by his colleagues to serve as the 139st Speaker of the House, having previously serving as the Majority Leader. He was re-elected Speaker on January 5, 2021.

Bryan’s emergence as one of Pennsylvania’s key leaders reflects his approach to life: Give back to the community that helped you. A lifelong resident of the Peach Bottom area, Bryan faced adversity as a high school student when both his parents were diagnosed with ALS (which eventually took both their lives) and he took on the responsibility of caring for them and his younger sister. The community helped out and embraced Bryan and his family, helping meet their every need.

At a time when most young adults headed off to college, Bryan worked and put himself through a trade school to become an X-ray technologist. Soon after, he married his high school sweetheart, Jennifer, and graduated summa cum laude, from Lebanon Valley College with a health care management degree. Following several years of working at the local hospital overseeing the budgets and daily operations of several sections in the radiology department, he pursued a law degree, focused on health care law, from Widener Law School and become a member of the Lancaster Bar Association and began practicing law with the firm of Nikolaus & Hohenadel.

The desire to give back to the community – which did so much for him and his family – drove Bryan to run for public office. He was elected in 2006.

Bryan’s extensive background in hospitals has also translated into writing laws to make the Commonwealth’s hospitals work more efficiently. His bill to eliminate redundant hospital accreditation procedures for hospitals that already meet all state licensing requirements, was signed into law as Act 60 of 2013. The law has allowed Pennsylvania hospitals to spend more of their time and money serving their patients.

Bryan has also lead efforts to ensure only the people eligible for human service assistance receive the help they need, helped reform the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), promoted greater integrity and transparency in state government strengthening lobbyist disclosure law, and most recently leading efforts to establish a state based health insurance exchange and reforming Pennsylvania’s election laws.

Bryan’s legislative achievements have all received strong bipartisan support and are a sign of his willingness to work together for the best interest of Pennsylvanians.

Bryan and his wife, Jennifer, have three children, Cheyanne, Caleb and Drew. The family lives on an 11-acre “hobby farm” in the same log cabin home where Bryan grew up. The Cutlers are active members of the Wrightsdale Baptist Church.

Next PA Press Club Luncheon – Monday August 28, 2023

Representative Dan L. Miller

Pennsylvania House Majority Whip

As the eldest child of immigrant parents, Dan was the first member of his family born in America. Raised by a single mom from an early age, finances were often challenging. Even so, his family instilled in him a strong appreciation and recognition of the special opportunities America offers. As a result, Dan has made public service an important part of his life.

He enlisted in the Army National Guard after high school. While his military service was cut short due to injury, he found another way to engage in service. As a Team Leader in the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps, he led a team of young people working on community projects across the Mid-Atlantic. Dan earned undergraduate degrees in education and history and became a teacher. He later graduated with a law degree from Catholic University, where he received two community service awards, chaired its public interest auction, and served as executive editor of its communications journal. Upon passing the bar, Dan decided to serve the community again as a public defender focusing on juveniles and later as a county solicitor where he worked to make sure kids were safe in their homes and received a proper education.

Dan and his wife Kim moved to Mt. Lebanon where he joined the Mt. Lebanon Fire Department as a volunteer firefighter. In 2011, he was awarded the Medal of Merit for his attempt to save the life of a 3-year-old child from a devastating house fire. He went on to be elected as a municipal commissioner and has served the community as a board member of such local institutions as Outreach Teen and Family Center, the Center for Theater Arts, Carnegie Library, and the Hollywood Theater in Dormont.

Dan was elected to the House of Representatives in 2013. In previous terms he served as a member of the Education, Labor and Industry, Judiciary and Human Services committees and on the following caucuses: Steel, Government Reform, Early Childhood Education, Equality, Autism and Intellectual Disabilities, and Fire/EMS. In 2018, he was elected by his peers to be chair of the Allegheny County House Democratic Delegation and in 2020 he became Caucus Chair of the Democratic Caucus.  Two years later, he was elected Whip of the Democratic Caucus when the Democrats became the majority party in the state house.

As state representative, Dan has received awards for his advocacy for people with disabilities from Achieva, The Peal Center, the Rehabilitation and Community Providers Association, the Pittsburgh Local Task Force, Autism Connection, the Pennsylvania School Counselors Association, and the Arc of Pennsylvania, and he has been awarded a lifetime membership in the PTA and an advocacy award from the United Steelworkers.