Pam Keith: A Story of Service

Pam Keith is the Democratic Nominee for Florida’s 18th Congressional District, winning the 2020 primary with 80% of the vote—a record for this district. 

Pam is the daughter of a U.S. Diplomat and former U.S. Ambassador. She was born in Turkey and lived in Morocco, Syria, Brazil, and several U.S. cities before going to high school in Oakland, CA and attending U.C. Davis for her BA and MA degrees. She then attended Boston College Law School where she was Moot Court champion and made Law Review. Her desire to serve her country led Pam to commission into the U.S. Navy as a JAG Officer in 1995. She served for four years, including a tour as Officer in Charge of the Legal Services Office in Bahrain. Ms. Keith later served as the first JAG assigned to the Navy Task Force on Computer Network Security. She speaks French, Spanish, and Portuguese. When elected, Pam will serve as the first Black female veteran in the history of the United States Congress. 

Pam has more than twenty years of legal experience, having worked at the prestigious law firms Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; Jones Day; and Ogletree Deakins. In 2011, she was recruited to serve as Senior In-House Counsel for NextEra Energy/Florida Power & Light Co. Pam is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., and volunteers as a consultant to Faith, Hope Love, Charity, Inc., a local non-profit that serves homeless and at-risk veterans.

In 2016, Pam became the first African American woman to run a qualified campaign for U.S. Senate in Florida history, garnering the endorsement of the Miami Herald and more than 15% of the vote. In that race—her first foray into politics—Pam gained popularity all over Florida for her innovative ideas and inspirational message. Now, her bold and unapologetic style, and passionate advocacy for values-based policy, have earned her a diverse and enthusiastic national following. She is the fresh face and new voice of Florida Democrats, and soon to be the next Congressional Representative of Florida’s 18th district.

A little about me, and my journey here.

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MY EARLY YEARS

June 23, 1963

 

I am the daughter of Kenton Keith and Brenda Ayo Keith.

September 1, 1970

I was born while the family was posted in Turkey.

After serving in the U.S. Navy, my Father joined the United States Foreign Service.

April 1, 1971

My older brother Vincent and I, playing in the courtyard of our temporary housing in Morocco.

After Turkey, we moved to Morocco, and then to Syria.

January 5, 1974

My first time seeing snow in the mountains of Syria.

December 24, 1972

I Learned that the most important thing about me was that I was an American.

Being raised in a U.S. diplomatic community, I learned that the most important thing about me was that I was an American, and that being an American was very special.

September 24, 1976

My experiences in Kentucky fueled my passion for equality and justice.

In 1975, my parents divorced and I moved to Oakland, California to live with my Mom.  Up until that time, I only knew I was an American.  It wasn’t until I was six years old that I learned what it meant to be an African American.  I really didn’t know anything about discrimination until we moved to Lexington, Kentucky.  In Lexington, we were the only African American family in our neighborhood and the only Black kids who were not bussed to school.  Those experiences fueled my passion to stand up for equality and justice.

January 9, 1977

I moved from Kentucky to Washington, DC.

I moved from Kentucky to Washington, DC to live with my Dad and my Step-Mom, Mireille Luc-Keith.  Then the family moved to Brasilia, Brazil.  In Brazil, I was again reminded of how much of a gift it was to be an American.

October 24, 1984

At Skyline High School in Oakland, California, I was Co-Captain of the Cheerleading Squad.

In 1982, I moved back to California to attend high school.

April 1, 1982

Singing in a talent show at the American School in Brasilia.

Our little group came in third and I had such fun singing with my American and Brazilian friends.

POST COLLEGE AND BEYOND

November 4, 1995

Being sworn into the United States Navy by Admiral James Fargo.

In the fall of 1992, after receiving a Master’s degree, I started at Boston College Law School.  After graduating, I was commissioned into the United States Navy, as a Judge Advocate (Lawyer).

May 12, 1996

At my first duty station in the Navy.

I served as Defense Counsel at the Navy Legal Services Office in Norfolk, VA.

September 1, 1998

Receiving a commendation as Officer in Charge of the Navy Legal Services Office Detachment, ASU Bahrain.

My first duty station was in Norfolk, Virginia, where I served as a Defense Counsel. I then volunteered to go to

Bahrain, in the Persian Gulf, to serve as the Officer in Charge of the Legal Services Office. In Bahrain, I spent most of my time at sea working on military justice cases.

December 1, 1999

I was then stationed in Washington, DC.

I was then stationed in Washington, DC to serve as the Staff Judge Advocate for the Navy Computers and Telecommunications Command.  It was an honor and privilege to serve my country in the Navy, and also an invaluable experience.

January 1, 2013

Attending the Florida State Delegation Inaugural Ball on Behalf of NextEra Energy/Power & Light Co. (FP&L).

In April of 2011 I was recruited by FP&L to be in-house legal counsel. Moving to Florida was an unexpected, but delightful turn in my path.

December 15, 1999

My farewell to the Navy celebration.

I got out of the Navy in December of 1999, and joined the DC office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius as a labor and employment attorney.  I also practiced law at Jones Day in Washington, DC and Ogletree Deakins in Indianapolis and Chicago.

November 12, 2014

Board Members breaking ground on the first-of-its-kind permanent housing complex for at-risk veterans.

I have now put down roots in Palm Beach County, where I am a member of Leadership Palm Beach County, a member of the Board of Directors of Faith, Hope, Love, Charity, Inc., a non-profit that serves homeless and at-risk veterans, and a volunteer mentor at the Boys and Girls Club of Riviera Beach.  In my spare time, I love to travel, cook, play tennis, salsa dance, and read.

June 19, 2016

Endorsed by Miami Herald

Read the endorsement here.

A little about me, and my journey here.

MY EARLY YEARS

June 23, 1963

I am the daughter of Kenton Keith and Brenda Ayo Keith.

September 1, 1970

I was born while the family was posted in Turkey.

After serving in the U.S. Navy, my Father joined the United States Foreign Service.

April 1, 1971

My older brother Vincent and I, playing in the courtyard of our temporary housing in Morocco.

After Turkey, we moved to Morocco, and then to Syria.

January 5, 1974

My first time seeing snow in the mountains of Syria.

December 24, 1972

I Learned that the most important thing about me was that I was an American.

Being raised in a U.S. diplomatic community, I learned that the most important thing about me was that I was an American, and that being an American was very special.

September 24, 1976

My experiences in Kentucky fueled my passion for equality and justice.

In 1975, my parents divorced and I moved to Oakland, California to live with my Mom.  Up until that time, I only knew I was an American.  It wasn’t until I was six years old that I learned what it meant to be an African American.  I really didn’t know anything about discrimination until we moved to Lexington, Kentucky.  In Lexington, we were the only African American family in our neighborhood and the only Black kids who were not bussed to school.  Those experiences fueled my passion to stand up for equality and justice.

January 9, 1977

I moved from Kentucky to Washington, DC.

I moved from Kentucky to Washington, DC to live with my Dad and my Step-Mom, Mireille Luc-Keith.  Then the family moved to Brasilia, Brazil.  In Brazil, I was again reminded of how much of a gift it was to be an American.

October 24, 1984

At Skyline High School in Oakland, California, I was Co-Captain of the Cheerleading Squad.

In 1982, I moved back to California to attend high school.

April 1, 1982

Singing in a talent show at the American School in Brasilia.

Our little group came in third and I had such fun singing with my American and Brazilian friends.

POST COLLEGE AND BEYOND

November 4, 1995

Being sworn into the United States Navy by Admiral James Fargo.

In the fall of 1992, after receiving a Master’s degree, I started at Boston College Law School.  After graduating, I was commissioned into the United States Navy, as a Judge Advocate (Lawyer).

May 12, 1996

At my first duty station in the Navy.

.

I served as Defense Counsel at the Navy Legal Services Office in Norfolk, VA

September 1, 1998

Receiving a commendation as Officer in Charge of the Navy Legal Services Office Detachment, ASU Bahrain.

My first duty station was in Norfolk, Virginia, where I served as a Defense Counsel. I then volunteered to go to Bahrain, in the Persian Gulf, to serve as the Officer in Charge of the Legal Services Office. In Bahrain, I spent most of my time at sea working on military justice cases.

December 1, 1999

I was then stationed in Washington, DC.

I was then stationed in Washington, DC to serve as the Staff Judge Advocate for the Navy Computers and Telecommunications Command.  It was an honor and privilege to serve my country in the Navy, and also an invaluable experience.

January 1, 2013

Attending the Florida State Delegation Inaugural Ball on Behalf of NextEra Energy/Power & Light Co. (FP&L).

In April of 2011 I was recruited by FP&L to be in-house legal counsel. Moving to Florida was an unexpected, but delightful turn in my path.

December 15, 1999

My farewell to the Navy celebration.

I got out of the Navy in December of 1999, and joined the DC office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius as a labor and employment attorney.  I also practiced law at Jones Day in Washington, DC and Ogletree Deakins in Indianapolis and Chicago.

November 12, 2014

Board Members breaking ground on the first-of-its-kind permanent housing complex for at-risk veterans.

I have now put down roots in Palm Beach County, where I am a member of Leadership Palm Beach County, a member of the Board of Directors of Faith, Hope, Love, Charity, Inc., a non-profit that serves homeless and at-risk veterans, and a volunteer mentor at the Boys and Girls Club of Riviera Beach.  In my spare time, I love to travel, cook, play tennis, salsa dance, and read.

June 19, 2016

Endorsed by Miami Herald

Read the endorsement here.

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