In 2019, Shaneka Tarae Johnson Henson became the first African American Woman to represent the City of Annapolis in the Maryland General Assembly.
Shaneka Henson is a Maryland House of Delegates member from the 30A district. She was appointed to the position from a field of fourteen candidates in May 2019 to replace the late Michael E. Bush. Before becoming a delegate, Henson served as a member of the Annapolis City Council representing Ward 6 from December 2017 to April 2019.
Shaneka is a native of Anne Arundel County Maryland and was raised in Annapolis, Maryland. She attended Coppin State University, where she graduated in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. Shaneka continued her educational pursuits and attended the University of Baltimore, receiving her Juris Doctorate in Law. She was admitted to the Maryland Bar in 2010.
Before joining the Maryland Legislature, Henson spent almost ten years as a practicing attorney for the Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney Office and the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA). She worked as an attorney in the Maryland Office of the Attorney General from 2013 to 2019. Before that, she was an attorney for the YWCA of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County. She continued her passion for the law, founding her law firm based in Annapolis, the Johnson Legal Group, LLC., in 2020. She serves as the principal legal counsel.
Henson was elected in 2017 to represent Ward 6 in the Annapolis City Council. As a council member and Alderwoman in 2018, Henson continuously advocated for and implemented laws protecting the City of Annapolis and its residents. In May 2019, Henson was appointed as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates, replacing the late Michael E. Busch. Henson serves on two subcommittees of the Appropriations Committee: the Subcommittee for Health and Social Services and the Oversight Committee on Pensions.
The delegate is a member of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, The Women Legislators of Maryland, and the Maryland Legislative Latino Caucus. She also was appointed by the House Speaker to serve on the Maryland Sexual Assault Evidence Kit Policy and Funding Committee.
Henson is also an alumnus and supporter of Emerge Maryland, a statewide organization to recruit, train and empower women who are Democrats to run for office. She is a board member of the Maryland Food Bank.
In 2021, among her many recognitions, she received the Sojourner Truth Award, Anne Arundel County. She is married and has one child.