Rep. Thomas Murt is a dedicated and tireless public servant who has served for many years as a School Director and Township Commissioner prior to being elected to the House in 2006. He was most recently reelected in 2016.
For the 2017-18 legislative session, Rep. Tom Murt has been appointed to the Human Services, Commerce, Children and Youth, and the Labor and Industry committees. Murt was also named the Republican chair of the Human Services Subcommittee on Mental Health.
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As an active committee member, Murt has dedicated himself to fighting for property tax reform, early childhood education, improved health care, and educational opportunities for Pennsylvania’s veterans.
But Murt is most known as a leading advocate for people with special needs and their caregivers. Murt has testified before the powerful Appropriations Committee every year since he was elected to seek additional funding for families who care for adult children with special needs. Murt visits group homes and facilities throughout the state across Pennsylvania where individuals with special needs live and receive care.
Murt’s groundbreaking work in defense of the children of Pennsylvania who work in the entertainment industry won national applause. Murt’s child labor legislation, which was incorporated into a larger labor reform package that became law, sought to update existing child labor laws to protect children in the entertainment industry, specifically those involved in “reality television” programming in Pennsylvania.
As a veteran, Murt’s role on the Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee is critical. There he advocates for Pennsylvanians who have served in our armed forces and has supported programs to increase veterans’ benefits in areas such as employment, education, and job training. Murt has also worked diligently to ensure that veterans who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) receive the healthcare they deserve.
Murt served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1990 to 2008. He was called to active duty in 2003 and served in Iraq with the U.S. Army’s elite 4th Infantry Division. While in Iraq, Murt was assigned to many Civil Affairs and humanitarian missions in and around Tikrit. He assisted in opening schools and health clinics, and also assisted in training the Iraqi security forces.
For his service in Iraq, Murt received the Army Commendation Medal and was nominated for the prestigious Humanitarian Service Medal. During his 14-month deployment in Iraq, he wrote of his experiences as a Staff Sergeant in a featured column, “Voice from Iraq,” which appeared weekly in Montgomery Newspapers. In 2008, Murt retired as a Staff Sergeant from the U.S. Army Reserve.
Murt always puts public service ahead of politics, and works collaboratively with members of both parties. For all his efforts, Murt has been honored with: the Rose R. Rosa Advocacy Award from the ARC of Montgomery, Bucks and Berks counties for his efforts towards the betterment of life for people with developmental disabilities; the Montgomery County Child Care Consortium Early Childhood Education Champion Award; and the 2010 Upper Moreland Man of the Year. In addition, he received the Martin Luther King Award from the Upper Moreland Middle School for addressing school violence and bullying. He also received the Giraffe Award from the Upper Moreland Intermediate School for his humanitarian work in Iraq.
Murt remains active in his community. He is a coach for the Upper Moreland Little League Program, St. David’s CYO, and the Upper Moreland Soccer Club. He also serves as a religious education instructor for St. David Parish in Willow Grove. In addition, he volunteers on the board of directors of the Upper Moreland Education Foundation and the Upper Moreland Historical Association, which he founded in 1996.
Murt was born and raised in Hatboro. He graduated from Archbishop Wood High School. He earned a B.S. in Economics from Penn State University and an M.A. in Education from La Salle University.
Murt also has taken other graduate coursework in Economics at Temple University and also earned a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Instructional I teaching certificate from Gwynedd-Mercy College. Before his election to the House, Murt was the Assistant Director of the Counseling and Advising Center at Penn State Abington. He still serves as a part-time faculty member at Penn State and currently teaches in the business department. Murt is currently a Temple University doctoral candidate in Educational Administration.
Murt and his wife, Maria, a Nursing Instructor at Temple University's Department of Nursing, live in Upper Moreland with their three children, Katherine, Daniel, and Patrick.
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