November 25, 2019

Baltimore County Celebration Series Senator Michael Collins

An elected official from 1978-2002, Michael Collins would represent Baltimore County  as a Maryland State Senator from 1986-2002 and as a Maryland State Delegate from 1978-1986.

Born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Collins graduated from the University of Scranton in 1962 before the desire for further education would lead him to Maryland and Johns Hopkins University. He’d graduate from Johns Hopkins in 1966 and begin a career in education. He’d serve as a classroom teacher and retire from Kenwood High School after some thirty years in the field.

Collins would begin his career in public office upon his election to the Maryland House of Delegates in 1978. He’d serve there from 1978-1986 as a member of the Constitutional and Administrative Law Committee before seeking and winning election to the Maryland Senate in 1986.

Collins’ time in the Senate would be highlighted by numerous positions of responsibility including chairmanships of the Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics (1995-2002), the Special Committee on Gaming (2001-2002), and the Baltimore County State Senate Delegation (1995-2002) along with membership on the Economic and Environmental Affairs Committee (1986-2002), the Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive, and Legislative Review (1994-2000), the Joint Work Group on Community College Financing (1994-1995), the Joint Committee on the Port of Baltimore (2000-2002), and the Senate Committee on Redistricting (2001-2002).

For his both his professional and legislative efforts, Collins was awarded with numerous honors. These recognitions included the Outstanding Contributions to Education Award from the Teachers Association of Baltimore County (1975), the Man of the Year Award from Essex Community College (1985), the Elected Official of the Year Award from the Young Democrats of Maryland (1986), the Legislator of the Year Award from the Maryland Psychological Association (1988), the Walter G. Wells Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Environment from the Potomac Chapter of the Sierra Club (1988), and the Legislator Recognition Award from the Maryland Association of Counties (1994).

Collins would leave the Maryland Senate in 2002, but he would not be finished with public service. He would accept appointment to the Baltimore County Board of Education in 2011 where he’d serve for 5 ½ years until his retirement in 2016. Collins life and career continue to leave a legacy of service to all those who have followed him and will follow him in the future.