Josh comes from a family of public servants.
Josh was born to Steve and Judi Shapiro on June 20, 1973. He spent a few years of his childhood on a naval base while his dad worked as a medical officer, and then his family moved to Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Throughout Josh’s childhood, he grew up watching his parents serve their community as a pediatrician and an educator.
As a kid growing up in Montgomery County, Josh starts an advocacy group for the American Soviet Jewry movement and begins his journey of helping others.
As a young boy, Josh learned about Jewish children living in the Soviet Union who weren’t free — to him, that meant they didn’t have freedom like he did to play Little League or hang out with their friends. He was motivated to act. Josh started an international letter-writing program between American and Soviet children to give the Jewish children in the Soviet Union some hope and raise awareness about religious persecution. After persistent advocacy, Josh’s pen pal, Avi, and his family were able to leave the Soviet Union and travel to America — where Avi attended Josh’s Bar Mitzvah before being granted asylum in Israel.
Josh marries his high-school sweetheart, Lori.
Josh and Lori met in the ninth grade, and have been together ever since (except for that one break during college 😉). They married after completing their degrees, and lived in Washington, DC for a few years while Josh started his career in public service and attended Georgetown University Law Center at night. After having their first child, Sophia, Josh and Lori chose to move home to Pennsylvania to raise their family.
Josh is elected State Representative for Montgomery County.
Flipping a Republican district blue for the first time in two decades, Josh was elected to represent Pennsylvania’s 153rd Legislative District. As State Representative, Josh led the way to implementing some of the toughest ethics laws in state history. His work earned him a reputation as a rare consensus builder willing to take on the status quo — “a blast of oxygen in the smoke-choked back rooms of quid-pro-quo Harrisburg.” Josh led negotiations across the aisle to broker a first of its kind agreement to seat a new Speaker of the House, was instrumental in ousting corrupt legislators, and supported legislation to strengthen Pennsylvania’s hate crimes laws, invest in public education, and create clean energy jobs.
Josh is elected Chair of the Montgomery County Commission, and ushers in a new era of fiscal management and government efficacy.
Josh was elected as the first Democrat to lead Montgomery County (Pennsylvania’s third largest county) since the Civil War. He inherited a financial mess and a $10 million budget shortfall — but Josh got to work, and led a fiscal and ethical turnaround. He took early steps to combat the opioid and heroin epidemic, helped the first LGBTQ+ couples in Pennsylvania marry, eliminated veteran homelessness, and invested in the county’s bridges, roads, and trails. He reformed the county’s pension system and fired the Wall Street money managers to save millions and protect seniors’ retirement. By the end of Josh’s tenure, he had replenished the county’s lacking reserve funds, decreased the size of the county’s budget, and put the County on a path back to a AAA bond rating.
Josh is elected the Attorney General of Pennsylvania.
Following the arrest of his elected predecessor, Josh was chosen by the people of Pennsylvania to serve as Attorney General. He restored integrity to an office badly in need of leadership and reform, and has proven to the people of Pennsylvania that he has their backs and is unafraid to take on the biggest fights.
Josh exposed the Catholic Church’s decades-long cover up of child sexual abuse, identifying over 300 predator priests and thousands of victims and spurring investigation across the United States.
Josh prioritized keeping Pennsylvania’s streets safe — arresting more than 6,500 drug dealers, seizing 2.5 million doses of heroin and over 1.5 million doses of fentanyl, and taking thousands of illegal guns out of the hands of criminals in just his first term.
Josh negotiated an agreement between two of our Commonwealth’s largest insurance companies, protecting health care access for nearly 2 million people in western Pennsylvania.
Josh fought against the Trump Administration’s efforts to deny women access to no-cost contraception and essential health care services through Planned Parenthood.
Josh defends Pennsylvania voters and the results of the 2020 election.
The former president tried to undermine our democracy and overturn our election dozens of times in court — but Josh defended Pennsylvania voters, and won. He argued all the way up to the Supreme Court, ensuring all legal votes were counted and the result of our safe, secure election was certified.
After four successful years, Josh is re-elected as Attorney General.
In his second term as our Attorney General, Josh continues to take on the big fights, stand up for the people of Pennsylvania, and enforce the law without fear or favor.
Josh is fighting our country’s opioid epidemic, leading a bipartisan group of Attorneys General to take on major American pharmaceutical manufacturers — and he’s gone after CEOs like the Sackler Family of Purdue Pharma for their role in perpetuating this crisis.
After an investigation revealed that the construction company Hawbaker, Inc. was stealing its workers’ retirement, health, and welfare money, Josh prosecuted the largest prevailing wage criminal case on record — in Pennsylvania and in the United States. He charged Hawbaker Inc. with four counts of wage theft, and those Pennsylvania workers will now get back every penny of the $20 million this company stole from them.
Josh led the coalition to create a statewide Police Misconduct Database in Pennsylvania, requiring local police departments to submit red flags filed against police offices and check the database for misconduct claims against an officer before hiring them. Josh brought members of the Legislative Black Caucus and law enforcement leaders together, and thanks to their hard work and collaboration, Pennsylvania became one of the first states to enact bipartisan police reform in the wake of George Floyd’s murder by a Minneapolis police officer. Josh launched the database standing with Michelle Kenney, whose son Antwon Rose, was killed by an East Pittsburgh police officer in 2018.
Josh has worked to safeguard Pennsylvanians’ constitutional rights to clean air and pure water, cracking down on companies who recklessly endanger our communities and fighting efforts to roll back critical environmental protections. Following a two-year Grand Jury investigation, Josh criminally charged multiple fracking companies for repeated violations of Pennsylvania law, detailing the systemic failure of the state government and the fracking industry to protect Pennsylvanians’ health and safety.
Josh has cracked down on the spread of ghost guns — untraceable, unregulated firearms that can be purchased without a background check and assembled quickly at home.
Josh is speaking truth and fighting for Pennsylvanians – without fear or favor.
Josh continues to fight against extremist Republicans who undermine our democracy by pushing lies and trying to restrict voting rights. He’s standing up to protect a woman’s right to choose, working to keep our communities safe, and defending our civil rights. Josh remains committed to taking on the big fights and delivering results to Pennsylvanians — just like he always has.