- About Me
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Anthony Hardy Williams, a lifelong resident of West Philadelphia, is serving his fourth term in the Pennsylvania Senate. The former corporate executive and entrepreneur began his legislative service in 1989, first winning office as a state representative for the 191st Legislative District. After a decade of service in the state House of Representatives, he was elected to the Pennsylvania State Senate in 1998. His district is the state’s most populous and most diverse, including Southwest Philadelphia and parts of South and West Philadelphia along with all or part of thirteen suburban communities in Delaware County (Collingdale, Colwyn, Darby Borough, Part of Darby Township, East Lansdowne, Folcroft, Glenolden, Lansdowne, Millbourne, Norwood, Sharon Hill, Part of Upper Darby and Yeadon).
As the Democratic whip, Williams plays a leadership role in the Pennsylvania Senate. He also serves on the Banking and Insurance, Education, Law and Justice, Rules and Executive Nominations, and State Government committees, as well as the Democratic Policy and Legislative Data Processing committees. He is a member of the Committee on Ethics and Official Conduct, the Arts and Culture, Life Sciences, Women’s Health, Early Childhood Education, and the PA LGBT Equality caucuses. He also serves on the Joint State Government Commission.
Williams is a member of the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts, a founding member of the Philadelphia Black Alliance for Educational Options, a board member of the national Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO) and a founder of the Hardy Williams Academy Charter School. He is a founding member of Neighbors United Against Drugs, an emeritus member of the board of the African American Museum in Philadelphia and an honorary advisory member of the board of the Philadelphia Holocaust Remembrance Foundation. Williams has served in the past on the boards of directors of SEPTA, Temple University and the West Philadelphia YMCA.
Anthony Hardy Williams is the son of the late State Senator Hardy Williams, outstanding athlete and scholar and “father” of Philadelphia’s independent political movement, and Carole Williams-Green, a former schoolteacher and prominent advocate for science education. His grandmother served as matriarch of this political family, the legendary “Mom” Frances Williams, a longtime community activist, senior citizen champion and mentor to many.
A graduate of Franklin & Marshall College, Williams resides in West Philadelphia with his wife Shari. They have two adult daughters, Autumn and Asia.
State Senator ANTHONY HARDY WILLIAMS
Always Hard Working…
- Changed state law so that property sold at sheriff sale could no longer be held for speculation.
- Changed state law to allow for fair tax treatment of those that live in the suburbs and work in the city.
- Worked with Governor Ridge to create the first dedicated funding for mass transit.
- Secured funds in support of a $2.7 million renovation of an historic but abandoned property, creating the first-of-its-kind urban environmental education center in West Philadelphia.
- Forged a historic partnership with the Building Trades Council to open the doors to good paying jobs in the building trades.
- Worked with leaders in bio-tech, pharmaceutical and research industries to retain and grow jobs.
- Led the fight, during the Rendell administration, to restore funding to the Arts.
- Helped craft the incentive package that led to the Comcast headquarters locating in Philadelphia.
- Worked with the Governor’s task force to remove obstacles and to keep Sunoco in Philadelphia.
- Has assisted Mayor Nutter with moving his agenda through Harrisburg – most recently with the passage of enabling legislation for the Actual Value Initiative, including Williams’ bill creating a Homestead Exemption for Philadelphia homeowners.
- Fought for – and won – new law to close irresponsible Stop-n-Go’s.
- Created an illegal gun task force and secured funding for a witness protection program – two initiatives now proven effective in stemming the flow of illegal guns and providing protection to citizens that bravely step forward to testify in criminal cases.
As of April 2012, the task force has led to the arrest of some 860 individuals, mostly straw gun purchasers, and has removed 2,591 guns off the streets, according to Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams.
- Secured funding for police cars and bullet-proof vests for local law enforcement.
- Played a key role in advancing legislation which allowed for the operation of charter schools in Pennsylvania.
- Supported creation of the Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program and led the fight to expand the popular EITC program and to create the Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit (OSTC) program. These provide tax credits to businesses that contribute to organizations that provide educational scholarships to children. Now more Pennsylvania parents have the opportunity to choose the best school for their children.
- Facilitated conversation and compromise that led to a decision by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to keep open four high schools slated for closing.
Thanks to the above mentioned education initiatives, literally thousands of children have access to safe, high performing schools.
- An advocate, throughout his legislative career, for funding public education, Williams said in response to the Governor’s most recent budget address, “Fixing and funding public education is a top priority.
- Has authored an ambitious legislative agenda in the current session, including bills intended…
o To prevent school employees with a history of sexual misconduct from moving from one school to another.
o To provide for instruction, from grades six through twelve, on the history of the Nazi atrocities committed from 1933 through 1945 and an understanding that genocide is a consequence of prejudice and discrimination.
o To amend the state constitution and provide for merit selection of state appellate court jurists.
o To help Pennsylvania retain and attract businesses by reducing the tax burden on Pennsylvania-based businesses and collecting additional tax revenue from out-of-state businesses which access Pennsylvania markets.
- Now a member of Pennsylvania’s newest odd couple – Williams attended the 2013 State of the Union address as the invited guest of U.S. Senator Pat Toomey.