Former Baltimore County Exec, Ted Venetoulis, Dies at 87

On Wednesday, former Baltimore County Executive, Ted Venetoulis, passed away at age 87.

Ted Venetoulis, courtesy of Baltimore County

MACo expresses its condolences to Ted’s family and friends. Ted leaves a lasting legacy in the state of Maryland, and in Baltimore County, as a visionary and reformer.

According to Pamela Wood of The Baltimore Sun:

Theodore G. “Ted” Venetoulis, the son of Greek immigrants who steered Baltimore County’s government out of a time of scandal and later worked in TV and publishing, died Wednesday. He was 87.

Venetoulis, a Democrat, was elected Baltimore County executive in 1974 and served one term, before losing the Democratic primary for governor in 1978.

Read the full Baltimore Sun article.

Maryland Matters ran coverage with a reflection on Venetoulis’s legacy:

Venetoulis was a hard-working county executive, credited with modernizing Baltimore County government, pushing environmental initiatives, preparing for suburban growth, and attempting to dismantle the Democratic political machines. But he was also considered a publicity hound, earning the moniker “TV Teddy.”

“As county executive I held town meetings, the first ones in Baltimore County,” Venetoulis said during a 1978 Washington Post interview. “I rode on garbage trucks, made district tours, opened up government meetings to the public, which I thought showed I was interested in an open government. Others called it a public relations stunt. It’s a matter of perception but I know why I did what I did.”

Reactions came in from Maryland’s political community: