In a speech highlighting his military and government service, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown announced Friday night he is running for governor of Maryland in the November 2014 election.
The speech came at a crowded barbecue hosted by Brown's campaign at Prince George's Community College in Largo, MD.
Backed by large Maryland and American flags, Brown outlined a basic campaign platform, which he said would make securing "economic prosperity for Marylanders" his top priority.
Brown highlighted his work as a state delegate representing Prince George's County and later during his time as lieutenant governor to expand health care coverage, proudly claiming that Maryland "leads the nation in implementation of Obama's health care reform."
Brown has served as Maryland's lieutenant governor since 2006 when he was picked to be Gov. Martin O'Malley's running mate.
Brown also underscored his work on gun control.
"During the past several years, we've made tremendous progress through a very difficult period and troubling moments," said Brown. "We've driven crime down to historic lows. We've passed this nation's most stringent gun control laws."
During the event, Brown received two key endorsements -- from Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD) and Maryland Senate President Mike Miller (D-District 27).
Campaign officials said that Brown is expected to choose a running mate by the end of the summer.
Brown also highlighted his military career. During his time in the Army Reserve, he flew helicopters in Germany and served as a JAG attorney in Iraq's Green Zone. His campaign web site says he is "the nation’s highest-ranking elected official to have served a tour of duty in the Iraq War." Brown still serves in the Army Reserve as a colonel.
In 2004, while serving in the Maryland House of Delegates, Brown was deployed to Iraq for a year. Despite his position as a state politician, Brown said that it was his responsibility to serve.
"The night I sat down to tell my children I was going to Iraq wasn't easy. How do you tell an elementary school girl and a boy that his father would be spending a year with the Army in Iraq?" said Brown during his speech. "I simply promised them that I would be home for my son's birthday."
Editor's Note: Anthony Brown's first name has been corrected in the headline.