Kaiser was born in Washington, DC on February 10, 1968 and grew up in Rockville, Maryland. She graduated from Rockville High School and then attended the University of Chicago, graduating with a B.A. in Political Science in 1990. She received two Masters Degrees from the University of Michigan in 1995, a Masters in Public Policy and a Masters in Educational Studies.
Career and community involvement
Between college and graduate school, Kaiser worked for Congressman Neal Smith (D-Iowa) as well as for Maryland Delegate Hank Heller. During that time, Kaiser became active in Montgomery County Democratic politics, was a member of the Giant Food Consumer Advisory Board, and coached youth basketball.
After completing graduate school, Kaiser worked as an Economist at the IRS from December 1995 until April 2002. During that time she was a member of the Wheaton Urban District Advisory Committee, the Rockville Branch of the American Association of University Women (serving as Membership VP and Secretary), and continued coaching youth basketball. She served in leadership positions as Chair of the Mid-County Citizens’ Advisory Board and Co-Coordinator of the Montgomery County Women’s Fair. In 1998, she was elected to a 4-year term on the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee.
She currently works part-time at Bethesda Transportation Solutions, part of the Bethesda Urban Partnership. Additionally, Kaiser is an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland teaching a course on Women in Politics. She is a lifetime member of Tikvat Israel (formerly Beth Tikva) Congregation in Rockville.
House of Delegates
Kaiser was first elected to the Maryland House of Delegates in 2002, and was reelected in 2006, 2010 and 2014. She is a member of the Ways and Means Committee, serving as the chair of the influential Education Subcommittee. She was appointed by Speaker Michael Busch in 2013 to serve as vice-chair of the 98 member House Democratic Caucus. She was elected by her colleagues to chair the 24 member Montgomery County House Delegation, the largest in the state of Maryland, and served in that role from July 2012 through December 2014. When the 2015 session convenes, Kaiser will begin serving as the Majority Leader in the House of Delegates.
During the 2004 legislative session, Kaiser testified on behalf of H.B. 1284: Medical Decision-Making Act and in her testimony announced that she is a lesbian. In making this announcement, she joined openly gay Maryland legislators Delegate Maggie L. McIntosh and then-Delegate (now Senator) Rich Madaleno. The LGBT caucus in the Maryland General Assembly increased to four in 2006 with the election of Del. Heather Mizeur and to seven in 2010 when Dels. Luke Clippinger, Mary L. Washington and Bonnie Cullison were all elected. In 2011, Del. Peter Murphy came out, taking the LGBT caucus to eight.
While a member of the House of Delegates, Kaiser maintains her activism in community organizations. She has served as the House of Delegates liaison for Committee for Montgomery. Kaiser was also selected by Speaker Michael Busch to be in the inaugural class of the Howard P. Rawlings Leadership Fellowship Program. Previously, she was active with the Girls in Information Technology Taskforce, the Carl M. Freeman Foundation and is a graduate of Leadership Montgomery. In 2004, she was elected as a Kerry delegate to the Democratic National Convention.
On February 23, 2013, Kaiser became engaged to her long-time partner, Nancy C. Lineman. On November 2, 2013, they got married. The couple lives in the Calverton neighborhood of Silver Spring with their 3 cats and 1 dog.