Skip to Content
The 191st General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Representative Robert A. DeLeo Democrat - 19th Suffolk

Photo of  Robert A. DeLeo
Speaker of the House

State House

24 Beacon St.
Room 356
Boston, MA, 02133
(617) 722-2500

About Robert A. DeLeo

House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo (D-Winthrop) represents the Town of the Winthrop and a portion of the City of Revere.  He has served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives since 1991 and became Speaker of the House on January 28, 2009. On Jan. 2, 2019, the House re-elected him as Speaker, his sixth term as Speaker.

An award-winning legislator, Speaker DeLeo seeks to empower individuals, families and communities by focusing on legislation that keeps cities and towns safer and healthier, creates jobs, and increases educational opportunities. Under his leadership, the House passed nation-leading legislation relating to early education and care, fighting the opioid crisis, economic development, gun safety, veteran’s benefits, criminal justice reform, clean energy, and protecting civil rights for all.  

Speaker DeLeo is a graduate of Boston Latin School. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northeastern University and a Juris Doctorate from Suffolk University Law School. He received an honorary Doctorate of Laws degree from Suffolk University in 2009 and an honorary degree from Salem State University in 2012. A grandfather of two, Speaker DeLeo resides in Winthrop.


Legislative Accomplishments

In 2018, Speaker DeLeo and the House completed a productive two-year legislative session by passing several landmark bills including those relating to criminal justice, gun safety, the opioid epidemic, women’s reproductive rights, education, economic development, and veterans benefits. 

During the session, Speaker DeLeo led the House in passing Massachusetts’ most comprehensive criminal justice reform legislation in a generation. The law establishes a more equitable system by supporting the state’s youngest and most vulnerable residents, reducing recidivism, and enhancing public safety.

A champion of Massachusetts’ nation-leading gun safety laws, Speaker DeLeo spearheaded efforts to make gun safety as a top legislative priority in 2014 and 2017 to ban bump stocks, prevent individuals who pose a risk of causing bodily injury to themselves or others from owning or possessing a firearm, authorize licensed gun dealers to access criminal offender record information (CORI), enhance record-keeping efforts, and to curtail gun trafficking. According to the Centers for Disease Control, Massachusetts has the lowest number of gun-related deaths in the nation.  In 2018, national gun safety advocates at The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence praised the Massachusetts Legislature for its leadership on gun safety with its support and investment in the Commonwealth’s “innovative and highly impactful Safe and Successful Youth Initiative”.

Under his tenure, Massachusetts leads the nation in laws designed to combat the opioid epidemic with a trio of legislation passed in 2014, 2016 and 2018. The laws are science-based, medically comprehensive substance addiction bills that increase funding and expand the healthcare system’s capacity to fight the crisis at unprecedented fight the crisis at unprecedented levels.

During this most recent session, the House also passed two balanced state budgets – without new major taxes – that made investments in early education, benefits for low-income families, workforce development, and housing. A budget surplus of $367 million increased the state’s Stabilization Fund, which is expected to surpass $2 billion in Fiscal Year 2019.

Massachusetts leads the nation in clean energy policy with legislation enacted in 2018 featuring pioneering commitments to offshore wind and energy storage. In 2016, the Legislature passed comprehensive energy law – a priority of Speaker DeLeo – that made Massachusetts the first state in the U.S. to require the procurement of offshore wind. The laws will create jobs, diversify Massachusetts’ energy portfolio, protect ratepayers, and ensure grid reliability and sustainability. In 2018, American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), a national industry organization, named Massachusetts No. 1 in the U.S. for energy efficiency for the eighth year in a row.

In 2018, Speaker DeLeo worked with his colleagues in the House to repeal of outdated laws that restricted women’s reproductive rights. In 2014, under his leadership, the Legislature also passed updated domestic violence legislation, which creates new criminal offenses and elevated penalties, boosts prevention efforts, and empowers victims.

Since becoming speaker, he spearheaded multiple economic development packages, which focus on expanding the Massachusetts economy and growing jobs through investments in infrastructure, job training and technology development. Under his leadership, the House has also focused on increasing funding to support early education and care programs across the state. 


Honors and Awards

Rental Housing Association Public Service Leadership Award (2018)

Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership Leadership Award (2018)

Roca 30 Peace Award (2018)

Citizens for Juvenile Justice Youth Justice Champion Award (2018)

Caring Force Legislative Champion Award (2017)

Bunker Hill Community College President’s Distinguished Service Award (2017)

Massachusetts Association of Early Education and Care Legislative Achievement Award (2017)

Boston Business Journal Power 50 Game Changers Honoree (2016)

Two-time honoree of the Equal Justice Coalition (2015 and 2009)

Stop Handgun Violence Gun Violence Prevention Hero (2015)

MassEquality Political Icon Award (2014)

MassINC Gateway Cities Champion Award (2014)

Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance Legislator of the Year Award (2014)

New England Board of Higher Education Leadership Award (2014)

Massachusetts Bar Association Legislator of the Year Award (2012 and 1998)

Vision Impairment and Blindness Distinguished Leadership FOCUS Award (2012)

Massachusetts Municipal Association Legislator of the Year (2011, 2006 and 1996)

Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus Good Guys Award (2010)

Health and Home Care Association of Massachusetts Legislator of the Year Award (1996)


Personal Information

Profession: Attorney/Legislator

Family: Two children and two grandchildren

Interests: Sports and reading

Education: Boston Latin School; Northeastern University, B.A; Suffolk University Law School, J.D.


Public Service: Town Meeting Member (1977-2014); Board of Selectmen (1978-1988, chairman 1981-1982, 1984-1985 and 1987-1988); Winthrop Democratic Town Committee (1980-present, vice chairman 1986-present); Massachusetts House of Representatives (1991-present) – House Ways and Means Committee Chair (2005 to 2009) and Speaker of the House (2009 to present).