Location: Wraps around the waterfront from Hawkins Point to Brooklyn, northward to the Inner Harbor, then eastward to the city line, roughly south of Route 40 East.
Demographics: Adult population of almost 95,000, about 30 percent black and almost 60 percent white.
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $91,059.46
Background: Elected after unseating veteran senator George Della in 2010, Ferguson, a lawyer and former BCPS teacher who now works as director of reform initiatives for the Johns Hopkins University School of Education, serves as Senate chair of the Joint Committee on Transparency and Open Government.
Legislative record: Ferguson's first term was remarkably productive, including successful bills to require public-school boards to inform public charter schools of available school property; establish the joint transparency committee on which he now serves as Senate chair; prohibit Baltimore City from selling property solely due to unpaid water-or-sewer bills; reform state election law and Baltimore City liquor laws; ease student-debt burdens; explore dispute-resolution solutions over disability-discrimination claims involving childcare providers; and establish the State Council on Open Data to implement policies that ease public access to government data.
Campaign finances: Top donors to Ferguson's campaign since 2012 include Katherine B. Bradley ($8,000), co-founder of CityBridge Foundation, which works to boost D.C. public-school performance; George and Betsy Sherman ($8,000), funders of the University of Maryland Baltimore County's Sherman STEM Teacher Scholars Program; and the New York branch of Democrats for Education Reform ($6,000), which works to improve public schooling. Ferguson also chairs Friends of Team 46 Slate, which is supporting his campaign along with those of incumbent delegates Luke Clippinger and Peter Hammen and delegate candidate Brooke Elizabeth Lierman; as of June 13, it had $34,847.39 on hand after receiving big donations recently from the campaign of Baltimore City sheriff John Anderson ($6,000) and the Baltimore City Sitting Judges Committee Slate ($5,000).
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $26,645.85
Background: An Anne Arundel County assistant state's attorney, Clippinger in 2010 won the open seat left by retiring state Del. Carolyn Krysiak. As is normal for first-time delegates, he chairs no legislative committees or subcommittees.
Legislative record: Clippinger successfully sponsored a number of substantive bills during his first term, including measures to extend the statute of limitations for prosecuting misdemeanor possession of child pornography; crack down on accident-causing distracted drivers using cellphones; reduce penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana; increase the minimum value of stolen property needed to support a robbery charge; and deter the jailing of those arrested for failure to repay debts.
Campaign finances: Top donors to Clippinger's campaign since 2012 include two SIEU accounts ($4,000); the campaign of state Del. Peter Hammen ($2,608); Steve Kearney ($2,000), Gov. Martin O'Malley's former press secretary who has since co-founded the communications firm Kearney O'Doherty Public Affairs; Scott Helm ($1,500), the man behind Baltimore-based Chesapeake Shakespeare Company; and prominent Baltimore attorney Andrew White ($1,500).
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $68,138.58
Background: The chair of the Health and Government Operations Committee and the Joint Oversight Committee on the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange, Hammen was first elected delegate in 1994, taking the seat vacated by Anthony "Tony" DiPietro, who that year made an unsuccessful bid for Senate. His father, Donald Hammen, was a state delegate before him, after long serving on the Baltimore City Council. He works for the managed-care organization Riverside Health, which provides health insurance for Medicaid patients.
Legislative record: Given Hammen's legislative duties, his legislative successes during his current term deal almost exclusively with lawmaking on issues involving health insurance, doctors, pharmaceuticals, and other details of medical-care provision, though his other successful bills include measures to amend Baltimore City liquor laws and authorize vehicle-height monitoring systems in Baltimore City.
Campaign finances: The Hammen campaign's top donors since 2012 include the Maryland Association of Nurse Anesthetists ($6,000); the Annapolis-based law-and-lobbying firm Greenfield & Kress ($2,500); Mary Wiechart ($2,103), campaign treasurer for Baltimore County state Sen. Katherine Klausmeier; and $2,000 each from Rite Aid, HFAM Nursing Home PAC, Caremark Rx, and Kaine Investments, a real-estate company headed by R. Brooke Kaine.
Mateen Rasul Zar
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $705.83
Background: Zar, a self-styled naturopathic doctor, in 2012 formed United Natural Healthcare, a Catonsville-based alternative-health clinic, where, according to his campaign website, "I take care of patients and their families who cannot afford the healthcare they need" by providing them "with free consultations, herbs, supplements, and management." His campaign office is in a home in Curtis Bay.
Campaign finances: Zar, who has lent his campaign $27,500, is the source of the vast majority of its funding.
Liam F. Davis
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $6,090.95
Background: A community liaison for Baltimore City Council president Jack "Bernard" Young, Davis was a grocery-store worker and active member of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 27 during college, before being laid off when the Superfresh chain closed down many of its stores in 2011. He also works as a tutor at Westport Academy and Holabird Academy for the non-profit Reading Partners Baltimore.
Campaign finances: Among the top donors to Davis' campaign are European Upscale Redevelopment Organization ($2,000), which has provided in-kind donations of rent for a campaign office; Iggy's Sandwich Kings LLC ($1,370), on Fawn Street in Little Italy; and Baltimore First Committee ($775), a PAC chaired by Baltimore bailbondsman Mark Adams and formed last year to "support candidates who fight for funding," according to campaign-finance records.
Brooke Elizabeth Lierman
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $11,579.14
Background: An attorney with highly regarded Baltimore firm Brown, Goldstein & Levy, Lierman concentrates on the rights of workers and the disabled, especially the blind, while providing free legal services via the Homeless Persons Representation Project and to community associations seeking influence over Baltimore City liquor board decisions. Her father is Terry Lierman, a former federal lobbyist, Maryland Democratic Party chair, and chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer.
Campaign finances: Among Lierman's top backers are her parents, Terry and Connie Lierman ($8,000); various SEIU accounts ($7,000); Maryland state Sen. Stewart Bainum ($2,000) and his classically trained singer and dancer wife Sandra Bainum ($2,000); Florida-based Wolfy's Realty ($4,000), a company associated with attorney and Maryland Stadium Authority board member John Coale, Fox News Channel anchor Greta Van Susteren's husband; and $4,000 each from members of the former Washington Wizards-owning family, Irene, James, and Robert Pollin.
Campaign cash on hand, as of June 13: $25,896.98
Background: An associate professor of physical therapy and rehabilitation science at University of Maryland School of Medicine, Romani runs the Baltimore branch of AARP Experience Corps, which provides tutoring and mentoring services to schoolchildren, and is the founder and president of MammoJam Music Festival, which raises money to fight breast cancer. Romani ran unsuccessfully in 2010 for 46th District delegate.
Campaign finances: Among Romani's top campaign backers are Carolyn Romani ($3,700) of Ithaca, NY; Maria Seville ($2,200) of North Andover, MA; Rebecca Davis ($2,000), legal counsel for the D.C.-based senior citizen's advocacy group Pension Rights Center; and Theodore Oberti ($2,000), described in Romani's campaign-finance report as a Teamsters union official. (Van Smith)