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Chair Pro TemporeWard Members
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Term: Jan. 2, 2015 - Jan. 2, 2019
Time on Council: 2012 to present
Political Affiliation: Democratic Party
Office: 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Suite 506, Washington, DC 20004
Tel: (202) 724-8028 | Fax: (202) 724-8076
Chair of: Committee on the Judiciary
Represents: Ward 5
Committee on the Judiciary
Committee of the Whole
Committee on Transportation and the Environment
Committee on Finance and Revenue
Chief of Staff
Deputy Chief of Staff
Laisha T. Dougherty
Constituent Services Coordinator
Kenyan R. McDuffie, Councilmember for Ward 5, was first elected to the Council of the District of Columbia in a 2012 special election. In November, Ward 5 voters overwhelmingly re-elected him to a full four-year term.
The Washington Post commended Kenyan for how quickly he “emerged as a leader” on the Council and became a champion for “improving the council’s integrity.” Shortly after taking office, he was elected by his colleagues to serve as Chair Pro Tempore and Chair of the Committee on Government Operations, where he oversees more than thirty agencies and commissions.
Kenyan has a strong legislative record. He ushered through sweeping campaign finance and ethics reform bills, which enhanced government accountability and transparency in the financing of District elections. He was also instrumental in expanding funding to preserve and create affordable housing to ensure that the District of Columbia remains home to individuals and families across the city. Kenyan also tackled challenging environmental concerns in Ward 5’s industrial areas by strengthening air quality standards and spearheading the Industrial Land Transformation Task Force, which has developed a strategic plan for the modernization and adaptive use of industrial land. He has worked to increase the budget of the Ward 5 Lead Senior Service Agency, ensuring that District seniors have improved access to social services and transportation, and he prioritized investments along Ward 5’s major retail corridors. Kenyan also fought to secure funding to rehabilitate the historic Alexander Crummell School in Ivy City.
Kenyan began his career in public service working for Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton shortly after graduating summa cum laude from Howard University. He went on to receive his Juris Doctorate from the University of Maryland School of Law, where he served as an editor of the University of Maryland Law Journal of Race, Religion, Gender and Class.
Prior to joining the Council, Kenyan worked extensively in the legal and public safety fields. He served as a law clerk for an Associate Judge on the 7th Judicial Circuit of Maryland and worked as an Assistant State's Attorney in Prince George’s County, where he prosecuted misdemeanor and felony cases in District Court and on appeal in Circuit Court. Kenyan served as a trial attorney for the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, where he conducted investigations and managed cases throughout the United States regarding enforcement of key federal civil rights statutes—including defending the rights of the mentally ill and working to reform the policies and procedures of police departments. He also worked as a policy advisor to the District’s Deputy Mayor for Public Safety and Justice.
Kenyan is Vice-Chair of the Metropolitan Washington Council on Governments’ Board of Directors as well as a member of the District’s Workforce Investment Council. Recently, he earned the distinction of being named one of the “Top 40 Trailblazers Under 40” by the National Bar Association.
Kenyan and his wife, Princess, live in his childhood home in Ward 5 with their two young daughters, Kesi and Jozi.