Rep. Ronald G. Waters' Biography

Ronald G. Waters began his legislative career by special election in May of 1999. As state representative for the 191st legislative district, he represents over 60,000 residents of Philadelphia and Delaware counties. He is also a member of the Philadelphia and the Southeast Pennsylvania Delegations.

Rep. Waters has dedicated his legislative career to increasing education, correcting health disparities, and prison reform. At a time when it was unpopular to discuss our criminal justice system, Rep. Waters saw a need for change and questioned the disproportionate rising costs, overcrowding and lack of recidivism prevention in our prison system. Rep. Waters works with the Department of Corrections to employ programs offering personal growth and development, rehabilitation, and redemption for offenders to return to society as law abiding citizens, in addition to actively seeking support for his legislation to institute change.

He also works with the United Community Action Network (U-CAN) at SCI Graterford, in a joint effort through their “Education over Incarceration” initiative to educate youth in the pitfalls of the culture of crime. Among their highlights is a scholarship program funded by inmates using their salaries to provide college scholarships for area students, and the “Old School, New School” live radio broadcast targeted for at-risk youth.

Rep. Waters also served as chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus (PLBC), which has a membership of 22 state House and Senate members, from 2009-12. After taking office, he revitalized the PLBC by championing inclusion and diversity within the House Democratic Caucus, the creation of the PLBC Scholarship Fund, and increased advocacy throughout the state for the underrepresented minority. At the national level, he serves as Pennsylvania caucus chairman and chairman of Region 2 (Pennsylvania and New York) of the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.

He is a founding member of several organizations dedicated to keeping youth involved in worthwhile community activities and opportunities, including the Southwest Leadership Academy Charter School, Creating a Village, Command Performance Drill Team, Men United for a Better Philadelphia, Men On A Mission, serving Delaware County, and Fresh Start, which provides mentoring and tutoring services for at-risk youth. Rep. Waters also is a member of the 959 Town Watch. Rep. Waters is a former Advisory Board member of Fox Chase Cancer Center.

A graduate of Overbrook High School in the class of 1967, Rep. Waters earned an associate's degree in management at Community College of Philadelphia in 1984. He joined the Philadelphia Parking Authority in 1986 and became supervisor of parking enforcement management that same year.

Rep. Waters was born on April 3, 1950, in Philadelphia, and is the son of Helen Waters and the late Granville Waters.

He is the father of eight children: four daughters -- Monica, Rasheedah, Laila and Aaliah, and four sons, Rasheed, Ishan, Aquil and Atif, who is deceased.