+ − Contact Information
Phone: (202) 724-8072
Fax: (202) 724-8054
+ − Biography
For more than 20 years, Tommy Wells has worked to improve our city services and quality of life. In his professional, civic, and political roles, he has demonstrated the leadership to bring people together and the commitment to forge a shared vision of our community – and he has the experience to bring that vision to life. Tommy began his Washington, DC, career in 1985 as a social worker in the District’s child protective services agency, working in neighborhoods throughout our city to ensure the safety of our most vulnerable children. After six years with the agency, Tommy became the director of the DC Consortium for Child Welfare, an organization of 20 nonprofit agencies that serve our city’s children and families, until his election to the Council of the District of Columbia in 2006. Tommy is the Chair of the Committee on Human Services and currently sits on the Committee on Economic Development, the Committee on Public Services and Consumer Affairs, and the Committee on Health. Tommy is also Chair of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments Human Services Planning Committee, Chair of the DC Safe Routes to School State Network, and the incoming Chair of the Chesapeake Bay Local Government Advisory Committee.
Innovative Problem Solver Tommy’s commitment to improving our city is matched by his enthusiasm for developing innovative solutions to stubborn problems. He consistently looks beyond traditional programs to find creative ways to get results – often with limited resources. Tommy has brought ground-breaking approaches to public school policy, with a focus on parental accountability. After discovering that one-third of DCPS students lacked immunizations that are legally required to start school, Tommy created an enforcement policy that ensures that 100% of our students are fully immunized at the start of each school year. When he learned that a murdered youth from Sursum Corda had not attended school in weeks, he devised and won approval for a policy that cut the truancy rate for elementary school-aged children in half.
Building Coalitions Tommy takes on even the most daunting challenges, enlisting and cooperating with key stakeholders to bring their knowledge and support to bear. Collaboration is especially important in making neighborhoods safe and secure. Because every neighborhood has its own unique security issues, Tommy works with residents to identify the sources of illegal or disruptive activity and address them directly.
Advocating for our Neighborhoods Tommy is dedicated to rehabilitating our neighborhood assets for the benefit of the entire community. Public schools are among the most important assets in Ward 6, and on the DC Board of Education Tommy has worked tirelessly to make schools a prime reason to live here. He brought in new programs for 3-year-olds at four of our neighborhood schools. Tommy works to maintain and redevelop other community assets as well. As an ANC commissioner, Tommy helped Results the Gym to acquire the deteriorating Giddings School for redevelopment, creating a major attraction that enhances the safety and vitality of the entire neighborhood. In addition, he rallied public support for the new dwellings at Ellen Wilson, providing mixed-income housing that restored a blighted area.
Tommy served as ANC Commissioner for 6B-04 from 1995 to 2000 and Chair of ANC 6B from 1999-2000. He was elected to serve Wards 5 and 6 on the DC Board of Education from 2001-2006. Tommy was elected to represent Ward 6 on the Council of the District of Columbia in 2006.
Born in Austin, Texas, on February 27, 1957, Tommy moved with his family to several states before settling in Homewood, Alabama. He graduated from Homewood High School in 1975 and received his BA from the University of Alabama in 1979. He then pursued a Master’s degree in social work, earning an MSW from the University of Minnesota in 1981. In 1991, Tommy received his JD from the Catholic University Columbus School of Law. He has been married to Barbara Wells since 1988.