SUSAN W. TURNBULL has dedicated over 40 years to community activism, civil rights, political organizing and creating opportunities for everyday people to access their government. She has worked in a variety of governmental, non-profit, business and political positions, including Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee, Chairwoman of the Maryland Democratic Party, a senior advisor and grant consultant to several members of Congress, owner of an interior space planning company and service on various charitable boards.
Susan has served as Chair of The Jewish Council for Public Affairs and Jewish Women International, as well as a board member and officer of the Jewish Social Service Agency of Metropolitan Washington, and on the national board of Hillel: the Foundation for Jewish Campus Life. Currently, she is an active member of the boards of the Center for American Politics and Citizenship at the University of Maryland and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington.
Throughout her life, Susan has worked extensively to elevate the diversity of voices for women and young leaders in politics. At the DNC, in addition to her efforts to elect President Barack Obama, Susan was selected as Chair of the DNC Women’s Leadership Forum and Women’s Caucus, helping to ensure the concerns of women were elevated across the Democratic party. She served as a national surrogate speaking out against disastrous Republican policies harmful to women and families. Following her Democratic Party leadership positions, Susan served on the national board of Emerge America and co-founded Emerge Maryland, an innovative program that recruits and trains women to run for office.
As Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party, Susan spearheaded an unprecedented organizing effort to elect Democrats up and down the ballot, culminating in the re-election of Governor Martin O’Malley and Senator Barbara Mikulski during a year where the party saw dramatic losses in other states.
Over the last decade, working with family members and others, Susan co-founded the Bolechow Jewish Heritage Society (BJHS) a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization devoted to the preservation, protection, and education about the long legacy of Jewish life in what was once the Austria- Hungarian Province of Galicia.
She has worked for over 20 years as an interior designer concentrating on projects for non-profit organizations and from 1995 to 1999, Susan served as a member and chair of the Montgomery County Board of Appeals where she helped to navigate solutions to various land use issues.
The youngest of three children, Susan grew up in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. Susan’s father was a Polish immigrant who worked as a taxicab driver. Her mother worked as a retail sales clerk. Susan and her brothers were the first generation of their family to attend college.
She holds a B.A. from Marymount University in Interior Design as well as an M.S. in Urban Studies from the University of Maryland and a B.S. Magna Cum Laude from The College of Community Service at the University of Cincinnati.
Susan and her husband Bruce reside in Bethesda, Maryland where they raised their two sons Josh and David. Over the last four years, their immediate family of four has expanded as they have welcomed two daughters-in-law, Judy Quijano Turnbull and Elizabeth Liedel Turnbull and two precious grandsons.