State Senator Stewart J. Greenleaf (R-Montgomery / Bucks) has represented Pennsylvania’s 12th Senate District for 40 years, since 1978. He was a member of the House of Representatives from 1977 to 1978, serving on the House Labor Relations and Judiciary Committees as well as the Subcommittee on Crime and Corrections. He also served as an Upper Moreland Township Commissioner, as an Assistant District Attorney, Chief of the Appeals Division for the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office, and as an Assistant Public Defender in Bucks County. He is a member of the Bar Associations of Pennsylvania and Montgomery County. In 2018, the Pennsylvania Bar Association presented the Senator with an award for practicing law for over 50 years.
A native of Montgomery County, Senator Greenleaf is a lifelong resident of Upper Moreland Township. He is married to Cecelia “Kelly” Greenleaf. Having graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, where he played varsity basketball, he received his law degree from the University of Toledo School of Law.
Senator Greenleaf has chaired the Pennsylvania Senate Judiciary Committee for 30 years. He is Vice Chair of the Senate Intergovernmental Operations Committee. He is also a member of the Senate committees on Appropriations, Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure, and Urban Affairs and Housing. He is a Senate appointed board member of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority.
He has served on the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, the Task Force on Death Penalty Litigation in Pennsylvania, and the Statewide Steering Committee on Court Automation. He currently serves as chairman of the Joint State Government Commission’s Task Forces on Real Property Law; Decedents’ Estates Laws; Domestic Relations Law. As a member of the Commission on Judicial Reform, he participated in the development of recommendations to improve the process of judicial selection and was prime sponsor of constitutional amendment legislation to revise the state’s system of judicial discipline. He serves on the State/Federal Assembly of the Law and Justice Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures and the Criminal Justice Task Force of the American Legislative Exchange Council. He is a board member of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority. He was chairman of the Senate Impeachment Committee during the 1994 impeachment trial of former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Rolf Larsen. He is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Commission for Justice Initiatives and Task Force on Student Loan Forgiveness and Repayment Assistance.
Senator Greenleaf has passed more legislation than any other member of Pennsylvania’s 253-member General Assembly. He has been the prime sponsor of 160 bills signed into law, and the driving force of many other measures that didn’t carry his name. The senator is the author of the Clean Indoor Air Act of 2008, Pennsylvania’s Megan’s Law, the Grandparent Custody Law, the Rails to Trails Act, the School Pesticide Law, the Health Club Consumer Protection Act, the Puppy Lemon Law, the “No Means No” Rape Law, the Amusement Ride Inspection Act, the Missing Children Act, the Divorce Code Reform Act and the Divorce and Custody Mediation Act. He was also prime sponsor of a law that extends the period of legal recourse for abused children, the constitutional amendment allowing for the option of electronic testimony for child victims and witnesses, the law requiring tougher penalties for cruelty to domestic animals, and the law allowing extended sentences when baseball bats are used in violent criminal acts.
As chairman of the Judiciary Committee, the senator conducted hearings on the corrections system in Pennsylvania and achieved passage of legislation to reduce overcrowding in state prisons and county jails through intermediate punishment programs. He is also sponsor of state sentencing reform legislation and of a law that provides for addiction treatment for eligible offenders. In 2010, the Senator passed his Criminal Justice Reform Act. He also conducted hearings on the state’s system of probation and parole, resulting in the enactment of public safety reforms in the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole and in the Interstate Compact, which deals with interstate parole arrangements.
In addition to his interest in criminal justice and judicial issues, Greenleaf has sponsored numerous consumer protection initiatives relating to telemarketing controls, octane level testing, the travel industry and the expansion of the Lemon Law to leased vehicles.
The recipient of a number of honors, Greenleaf has been presented the 2005 Leadership Award of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape; the 2002 Montgomery County Bar Foundation Milton O. Moss Award; the 2002 Clean Water Fund Leadership Award; the Pennsylvania Legal Services Ambassador for Justice Award, the Pennsylvania Credit Union League Keystone Award, the Montgomery County Bar Association Outstanding Service Award; the Vince Fitzpatrick Humanitarian Award, the Pennsylvania Legal Services Outstanding Leadership Award; the Fraternal Order of Police Award; the Matty Muir Award from the Victim Services Center of Montgomery County; the Montgomery County Association for Retarded Citizens President’s Award; the Conservation Legislator of the Year Award by the Pennsylvania Wildlife Federation; the National Federation of Independent Business Guardian of Small Business Award and the Humane Society of the United States Mid-Atlantic Region Humanitarian Award. He was selected Man of The Year by the Willow Grove Chamber of Commerce and the Ukrainian Educational and Cultural Center. He was chosen for the Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association 1992 Annual Award in recognition of his “efforts and resolve in protecting the rights of Pennsylvanians under civil law.”
He has also received the B’nai B’rith Humanitarian Award, the North Penn Korean Association Community Award, the Boy Scouts of America Community Service Award, the Caroline Earle White Award of the Women’s SPCA, the Korean Senior Citizens Service Award, the Deputy Sheriffs Association Distinguished Public Service Award, and the Pennsylvania Legislative Animal Network’s Humane Legislator of the Year Award.
Senator Greenleaf has most recently been presented with the William E. Zeiter Award from the Statutory Law Committee of the Pennsylvania Bar Institute for his efforts to update and consolidate Pennsylvania’s statutory law. Also, in 2008, the Senator was awarded a proclamation from the Pennsylvania Veterinary Medical Association and the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine for the advancement of animal welfare issues, the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) Guardian of Small Business award, and the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award from the University of Toledo College of Law, in recognition of his lifetime of legislative accomplishments.
- A turning tide in criminal justice policy, Greenleaf leads the legislature in bills signed into law
- Greenleaf Chaired 1994 Impeachment Proceedings
- Career as a Montgomery County Prosecutor leads to a life of public service and work on criminal justice issues.
- I really wanted to be a professional basketball player