Member Biography

Shirley M. Kitchen 

Sessions Office Position District Party
1997       3 Democrat
1998       3 Democrat
1999       3 Democrat
2000       3 Democrat
2001       3 Democrat
2002       3 Democrat
2003       3 Democrat
2004       3 Democrat
2005       3 Democrat
2006       3 Democrat
2007       3 Democrat
2008       3 Democrat
2009       3 Democrat
2010       3 Democrat
2011       3 Democrat
2012       3 Democrat
2013       3 Democrat
2014       3 Democrat
2015       3 Democrat
2016       3 Democrat

COUNTIES: Philadelphia  


09/18/1946 -

Shirley M. Kitchen (D3) Philadelphia (Part) County 1996-2016 

Early Life:

Shirley M. Kitchen, born September 18, 1946, Augusta, Augusta–Richmond County, Georgia; daughter of Ferman and Ruth Sanders Few; education, Philadelphia Public School System; Antioch University human services, (B.A.), 1979; Temple University (Certificates), Child Care, Behavior Modification and Economic Development; social worker, Philadelphia County; director of constituent services, Philadelphia city council President John F. Street 1986-1987; leader, 20th Ward Democratic Executive Committee; member, Democratic State Committee 2001-2006; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania House of Representatives, 1987-1988; unsuccessful campaign, reelection, 1989 term; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate 1997-2016; appointed, board, Public School Employees Retirement System (2009-2010), five children.

Early Career:

Social worker; board member, Saint Joseph’s Hospital; Philadelphia Democratic Executive Committee; North Philadelphia Housing Community Development Corporation; member ex officio, North Central Empowerment Zone; National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); member, advisory committee, Calcutta House; ward leader, 20th ward; East of Broad Coalition; co-sponsor/founder, North Philly Dazzling Diamonds.

Pennsylvania Politics:

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania House of Representatives 1987-1988; unsuccessful campaign, reelection, 1989 term.

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 3rd district, Philadelphia (Part) County, 1996-2016; committee assignments, Agricultural and Rural Affairs, Public Health and Welfare (Minority Chairwoman), Transportation, Urban Affairs and Housing; member, Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. Second African American woman to serve in the Pennsylvania State Senate, at the time of her retirement, was the only African American woman member of the Senate. 

Pennsylvania House of Representatives Biography

Official Website - PA House Archives Official Website (


Cox, Harold. "Senate Members K"Wilkes University Election Statistics Project. Wilkes University.

The Pennsylvania Manual, (1999-2000). Crowell, G.; Secretary, Department of General Services. (Volume 114) Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, pages 3-34, 3-42; Biographies of Members of the Senate, page 3-16.

The Pennsylvania Manual, (2015-2016). Bogden, S., (Editor). (Volume 122). Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; pages 3-32, 3-39. Biographies of Members of the Senate, page 3-19.