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Maryanne Keller

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Maryanne Keller
Colorado State Senate District 20
Former member
Term in office began
Term in office ended
Political party Democratic
Profession Legislator
Maryanne "Moe" Keller (b. February 19, 1949) was a Democratic member of the Colorado State Senate from 2003 to 2011. She represented the 20th district.

Keller was a member of Wheat Ridge City Council from 1983 to 1989. She then served in the Colorado State House of Representatives from 1992 to 2000.

Keller earned her B.S. from Buffalo State College in 1971. She went on to receive her MA from Canisius College in 1972.

Keller worked as a Special Education Teacher/Interpreter for Jefferson County R-1 Schools from 1978 to 2002.

Committee assignments



See also: Colorado State Senate elections, 2010

Keller was ineligible to run for re-election in 2010 due to Colorado's term limits.


On November 7, 2006, Keller was elected to the 20th District Seat in the Colorado State Senate, defeating opponent Dick Sargent (R).[1]

Keller raised $126,062 for her campaign, while Sargent raised $41,657.[2]

Colorado State Senate, District 20 (2006)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Maryanne Keller (D) 23,925
Dick Sargent (R) 18,079

Campaign donors


In 2006, Keller collected $126,062 in donations.[3]

Her five largest contributors in 2006 were:

Donor Amount
Democratic Senate Campaign Fund $15,000
Jefferson County Education Association $4,000
Colorado State Conference Of Electrical Workers $4,000
Food & Commercial Workers Local 7 $4,000
Service Employees Local 105 $3,500


Keller and her husband, Stephen, have two children.

Retiring regrets

Because Colorado puts a term limit on its lawmakers, Keller is forced to retire at the end of the year. Colorado News Agency asked her some end-of-term questions about her time in the legislature.

She said the realities of 2010 foreclosed on keeping programs in which she believed intact and she was one of a handful of key decision makers who wound up determining their fate on the Joint Budget Committee.

"I found in 2008 and 2009 that I had to cut programs that I believed in," said the veteran lawmaker from Wheat Ridge. "That was stressful. I really tried hard to protect both developmental disabilities and mental health from the majority of the cuts, but they took some hits. I had to look at the entire budget, and it has to balance in the end, and that became the priority for me."

Years ago, Keller served in the House advocating for mental health issues, the developmentally disabled and child welfare. It was also personal for Keller, who has a sibling with schizophrenia.

"I know what it does to the person and I know what it does to the family," said Keller. "In 1997, when Marcy Morrison carried the first parity law (for mental illness) schizophrenia was included and I jumped on it and co-sponsored."

Morrison left the legislature after that term and Keller made a vow to keep the momentum going surrounding mental health issues.

"I just decided, that’s going to be my mission," said Keller "And it has been ever since."

In 2004 Keller, at the urging of her peers, and, says Keller, with considerable hesitancy on her part, was installed by a vote of her Democratic caucus as a member of the Joint Budget Committee. Being on the time-consuming committee required a shift in priorities for Keller, dictating that her focus be realigned from legislation in general to the budget.

"At the end of the day, you have to have the constitutional requirement of having the balancing of the budget fulfilled," said Keller. "There’s a difference between working on a bill with a narrow focus and working on the budget with a much larger focus."

Keller says distributing $7.8 billion is not as easy as most would think, especially when expenditures far outpace revenue as they have in recent years.[4]

External links

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Political offices
Preceded by
Colorado State Senate - District 20
Succeeded by
Cheri Jahn