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 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, 1996-2016; minority chair, Public Health and Welfare Committee; member, Agricultural and Rural Affairs, Public Health and Welfare, Transportation and Urban Affairs and Housing Committees; member, Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. Second African-American woman to serve in the Pennsylvania State Senate and at the time of her retirement, was the only African-American woman member of the Senate.

Pennsylvania House of Representatives Biography:


Pennsylvania Manual, Biographies of Members of the Senate, pg. 3-17; Volume 113, December 1997. Pennsylvania Manual, Biographies of Members of the Senate, pg. 3-19; Volume 122, December 2015.