HARRISBURG -- Jeff Foreman, 57, grew up Republican, but by his 30s he was chairman of the Dauphin County Democratic Party and helped run numerous local political campaigns.
He is committed to the party because he believes in its policies, said a former caucus staffer, who knows him well. That commitment to party ideals may have led him astray.
Mr. Foreman's history in the Capitol is long and varied.
He began work more than two decades ago as a House Democratic aide, then was recruited to run the research department for Senate Democrats, who promised he would have a role in shaping policy. When that role never materialized, he took a pay cut to return to the House, said the former staffer.
At the same time, he was working on his law degree from Widener University in Harrisburg.
Soon after, former Minority Whip Mike Veon, D-Beaver Falls, plucked him out of a rank-and-file member's office to run the Legislative Research Department and, eventually, to serve as his chief of staff. He now works as chief counsel for Majority Whip Keith McCall, D-Carbon and, with a $126,000 salary, is one of the highest paid staffers in Harrisburg.
He also runs a private law firm in Harrisburg with his twin brother Bruce and is on the Board of Overseers for Widener University School of Law.
He has a reputation for being introverted, intelligent, organized and inspiring. He is known for being an adept speech writer, who often works in longhand and finishes in a single draft.
"Everything just flows until he's done. He's a genius when it comes to that," said a former caucus employee.
Post-Gazette research assistant Steve Karlinchak contributed. Tracie Mauriello can be reached at email@example.com or 717-787-2141.