Obie Patterson, former member of the Maryland House of Delegates, graduated from Johnson C. Smith University (JCSU) in Charlotte, North Carolina with a B.S. in Biology. He completed his graduate studies at the University of Florida, Gainesville with an M.A. in Public Administration. He remains active on the JCSU Board of Trustees and serves as Chair of the Student Affairs Committee.
Mr. Patterson currently serves as a Maryland Parole Commissioner. He is also president of the Maryland Black Caucus Foundation and president of the African American Democratic Club of Prince George’s County.
Before being elected to public office, Obie Patterson worked for 30 years at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in several positions which included Research Biologist, Management Analyst, Program Analyst and Equal Employment Opportunity Specialist. He served as a Program Manager administering grants to the 1890 Land Grant Institutions (approximately $30 million annually). He provided national leadership for the USDA’s High School Research Apprenticeship Program. He provided national leadership in planning and implementing research programs in Historically Black Colleges and Universities and developed procedures and evaluation criteria for administering grants. He also served as an adjunct professor at Bowie State University and at Prince George's Community College.
Obie Patterson was first elected as a Maryland State Delegate for Prince George's County in November of 1994. He was reelected in 1998 and again in 2002. During his terms in the Maryland General Assembly he chaired and served on several committees and subcommittees, some of which included Ways and Means, Commerce and Government Matters, Protocol, Tax and Revenue, Transportation, County Affairs and Education. He served as Chair of the County Affairs Committee and the Subcommittee on Election Law. He was a member of the Ways and Means Committee, the Joint Committee on Protocol, and the Joint Committee on Children, Youth and Families. He also served as the House Floor Deputy Majority Whip and as the House Assistant Majority Leader. His 12 years as a state delegate provided him the opportunity and experience in analyzing the State budget, education reports, tax and revenue reports and transportation reports, among others.
In 2002 Obie Patterson was elected Chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland (LBCM), where he had previously served as its Treasurer. While serving as Chair of the LBCM, he commissioned the Justice Policy Institute to study the disproportionate number of African Americans incarcerated in the Maryland corrections system for nonviolent drug offenses. The rate was alarming. This led him to introduce legislation to provide treatment and training for nonviolent drug offenders. That legislation was signed into law with a $3-million pilot program, with $1.6 million allocated to Prince George’s County. Overall, he was able to bring back over $4.5 million to his district for special community projects such as the library expansion (Sojourner Truth Room), the ice skating rink, and the Sports and Technology Center. He continues to be a strong community advocate working with youth and seniors.
AWARDS AND AFFILIATIONS
Obie Patterson has received numerous honors and awards, both locally and nationally, which include the Johnson C. Smith University Trustee's Award, the Kappa Alpha Psi, Inc. Brother of the Year Award, the Prince George's County Educators Award, the Prince George's County Realtors Award and a Father of the Year Award. Obie Patterson is involved in numerous state, national, civic and community organizations. He is a member of the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., the Pi Sigma National Honor Society, the NAACP, the Roscoe C. Cartwright Prince Hall Masons, and the Prince George's Volunteer Action Center, to name a few. He is a faithful member and Chair of the Trustee Board of Fort Foote Baptist Church in Fort Washington, Maryland. Obie is the proud father of two sons and a daughter, and grandfather of two granddaughters and one grandson.
Father, I stretch my hands to Thee,
No other help I know;
If Thou withdraw Thyself from me,
Ah! Whither shall I go?