Thomas D’Alesandro III Biography
Thomas Ludwig John D’Alesandro III was an American attorney and former politician who was Mayor of Baltimore from 1967 to 1971. He was the brother of Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, and son of former Baltimore Mayor Thomas D’Alesandro Jr., who served from 1947 to 1959.
|Quick Bio and Fact Thomas D’Alesandro III|
|Preceded by||Theodore McKeldin|
|Succeeded by||William Schaefer|
|Thomas Ludwig John D’Alesandro III wiki|
Thomas Ludwig John D’Alesandro III
July 24, 1929
|Died||October 20, 2019 (aged 90)|
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
|Relatives||Thomas D’Alesandro Jr. (father)|
Nancy Pelosi (sister)
|Education||Loyola University Maryland (BA)|
University of Maryland, Baltimore (LLB)
|Branch/service||United States Army|
|Years of service||1952–1955|
Thomas D’Alesandro III Age
He was born on July 24, 1929, and died on October 20, 2019. He was 90 years old.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Early life and education
D’Alesandro was born in Baltimore to Annunciata (née Lombardi) and Thomas J. D’Alesandro Jr.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Family, Sister Nancy Pelosi
He was the oldest of six children, of whom his youngest sister Nancy would become the first female Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Education
He attended Loyola College in Baltimore and studied law at the University of Maryland School of Law In 1952,
Thomas D’Alesandro III Wedding
He married Margaret “Margie” Piracci at the Baltimore Basilica; more than 5,000 people attended the wedding.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Wife, Children
He is survived by his wife Margaret, children Thomas, Dominic, Nicholas, Patricia and Gregory, and ten grandchildren.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Army Career
He served in the US Army from 1952 to 1955.
Thomas D’Alesandro III Political Career
After military service, D’Alesandro entered into politics, becoming president of the Baltimore City Council in 1963. He ran for mayor in 1967 as a Democrat and easily defeated Republican challenger, Arthur W. Sherwood, winning all 555 of the city’s precincts.
Thomas D’Alesandro Mayor of Baltimore
Alesandro was mayor of the city during the 1968 riots. His and Pelosi’s father, prominent Maryland politician Thomas D’Alesandro Jr., also served as mayor in the city for 12 years.
D’Alesandro served as Baltimore City Council president and then as mayor. The elder D’Alesandro also served as a state delegate and congressman.
As Baltimore’s 42nd mayor, he opened new schools, built a new police headquarters and pushed for open housing. D’Alesandro got Baltimoreans to approve an $80 million bond issue to build schools. He devised summer recreation programs — mobile pools, day camps — for city youth. And he laid the legislative groundwork for the Inner Harbor development.
D’Alesandro’s one term as mayor was dominated by civil unrest and budgetary troubles. In 1968 D’Alesandro ordered the relocation of the East-West Expressway, unstarted since 1941, to be rerouted through the Western Cemetery, then canceled the project, then implemented a HUD program to finance 475 of the vacant homes abandoned after they were previously condemned to create “homes for the poor.” The homes were demolished in 1974, with the Rouse Company creditors abandoning the project.
Just four months after D’Alesandro’s inauguration, the Baltimore riot of 1968 erupted after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., and Maryland Governor Spiro Agnew called National Guard troops in to control the situation.
Thomas D’Alesandro, who took office vowing to “root out every cause or vestige of discrimination,” remained proud throughout his life of his progressive record on civil rights. As City Council president, he worked with Mayor Theodore McKeldin, a liberal Republican, to eliminate racial barriers in employment, education and other areas. As mayor, he appointed multiple African-Americans to his administration, some of them, such as George Russell, Jr., the city solicitor and member of the Board of Estimates, the first African Americans to hold those positions.
In 1998, Jack Eddinger, Mayor D’Alesandro’s press secretary, wrote in the Baltimore Sun that “Tommy D’Alesandro was Baltimore’s first modern mayor. He not only presided over its emergence as a Renaissance City that it is today, but he gave it unmatched leadership. Much of what other mayors get credit for began in those tumultuous four years, from urban design and labor law reform to streamlined governmental administration and the flowering of the vital alliance between the city and the Greater Baltimore Committee.”
Thomas D’Alesandro Later Career, Networth
D’Alesandro would never run for another political office, choosing to go into private law practice. Years later, D’Alesandro insisted that the riots were not the reason that he walked away from politics. He said that the reason was simply that he had five children and his mayoral salary was not sufficient for him to support his family.
Thomas D’Alesandro Death, Thomas D’Alesandro Cause of Death
D’Alesandro died after complications from a stroke at his home in North Baltimore on October 20, 2019. His sister, Speaker Nancy Pelosi said upon his passing “Tommy dedicated his life to our city. A champion of civil rights, he worked tirelessly for all who called Baltimore home. Tommy was a leader of the dignity, compassion and extraordinary courage, whose presence radiated hope upon our city during times of struggle and conflict.”
Fast Facts You Need to Know
- The former Baltimore mayor died at his North Baltimore home on Sunday
- His sister called him ‘the finest public servant I have ever known’, in a statement
- The grandfather of ten was mayor of Baltimore from 1967 to 1971
- He is survived by his wife Margaret, five children and ten grandchildren