Mathew R. Swinburne, J.D., is associate director of the Network’s Eastern Region Office. Mathew has 10 years of experience in public health law and policy.  His work currently focuses on issues of food safety and security, injury prevention, chronic disease, environmental health, and cannabis policy.

Mathew was a Leadership Scholar at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, where he graduated Order of the Coif and magna cum laude in 2008. While at law school, he worked as a judicial intern for the Honorable Richard S. Bernhardt of the Circuit Court for Howard County and as a summer associate for Venable LLP. Mathew also participated in the law school’s Tobacco Control Clinic, advocating for state legislation regarding the tax rate of little cigars. After law school, Mathew worked as a commercial litigation associate for Venable. After leaving Venable, Mathew served as a law and policy analyst at the Center for Health and Homeland Security (CHHS). At CHHS, Mathew worked on cyber-security issues, emergency response resource gap analysis, and public health emergency response programs. Mathew is admitted to practice law in Maryland.

Prior to attending law school, Mathew worked for the American Red Cross in Montgomery County, Maryland. During his tenure, he served as the Director of Volunteer Services, Director of Health and Safety Services, and Interim Executive Director. As a member of the Red Cross, Mathew also participated in the 9/11, D.C. Sniper, and Hurricane Isabel disaster relief operations.

Articles & Resources

Marijuana Delivery: California’s Looming Legal Battle

Law & Policy InsightsMarijuana Legalization

February 12, 2020
by Mathew R. Swinburne

As more states legalize medical and recreational marijuana use, they are being confronted with a broad spectrum of policy issues. One of the emerging issues is whether to allow the legal cannabis industry to deliver marijuana directly to customers. Advocates see it as an issue of access, especially for medical marijuana patients. Opponents argue that delivery will make it easier for kids to get marijuana and that the delivery vehicles will be targeted by criminals.

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How Proposed SNAP Regulations Could Threaten Food Security for Millions of Children

Law & Policy InsightsFood Safety and Security

November 7, 2019
by Mathew R. Swinburne

Approximately 37 million Americans lack dependable access to enough food to live healthy lives. The health effects of food insecurity are particularly pronounced for children, putting them at increased risk for mental health disorders, chronic disease and impaired cognitive development. Current proposed changes to the Federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides qualifying households with funds to purchase food, would put millions of children at risk of experiencing ongoing food insecurity.

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Making Sure Kids are Healthy Enough to Learn: Innovations in Education Law and Policy

WebinarsNational School Lunch ProgramFood Safety and SecurityHealth in SchoolMechanisms for Advancing Public Health

September 26, 2019
by Kerri McGowan Lowrey and Mathew R. Swinburne

Education has emerged as a social determinant of health in its own right. More highly educated individuals are healthier and tend to live longer; they also are at less risk of smoking, drug abuse, accidents and chronic diseases. Despite federal laws that guarantee all children a free appropriate public education, major inequities exist.

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Providing Policy Expertise as Maryland Explores the Challenges of Recreational Marijuana Legalization

Law & Policy InsightsMarijuana LegalizationSubstance Use Prevention and Harm Reduction

August 28, 2019
by Mathew R. Swinburne

Many states allow for license suspension for non-payment of fees and fines for traffic offenses. These suspensions often have significant health impacts, some of which seem obvious—people need transportation to access medical care. But a closer look reveals a plethora of other negative consequences that impact public health.

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A Confusing Path Forward for Federal Regulation of Cannabidiol Products

Law & Policy InsightsMarijuana Legalization

April 18, 2019
by Mathew R. Swinburne

Dietary supplements and foods containing cannabidiol (CBD) are being sold over-the-counter throughout the United States. The over-the-counter sale of dietary supplements and foods containing CBD has created a lot of confusion regarding the legality of this practice because of CBD’s association with marijuana and recent changes in the 2018 Farm Bill.

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Key Public Health Initiatives: A Year in Review

WebinarsHealth ReformFood Safety and SecurityInjury Prevention and SafetySubstance Use Prevention and Harm Reduction

December 13, 2018
by Kathleen Hoke, Kerri McGowan Lowrey and Mathew R. Swinburne

Among the most pressing public health issues of 2018, access to healthcare, electronic nicotine delivery systems, injury prevention, and food insecurity saw significant legislation and policy impacts. In this webinar, subject matter experts will recap how four important public health initiatives—expansion of scope of practice; regulation of electronic nicotine delivery systems; traumatic brain injury prevention; and food insecurity and SNAP—were impacted in 2018.

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Housing Law and the Impact on Domestic Violence Survivors

WebinarsInjury Prevention and SafetyHealthy and Affordable Housing

August 29, 2018
by Mathew R. Swinburne

Many municipalities in the U.S. have enacted nuisance property ordinances, which can have harmful effects on victims of domestic violence. Attend this webinar to learn about the impact of housing law on domestic violence survivors, hear from speakers with experience advocating for the housing rights of domestic violence survivors, and obtain tools and strategies that can be used to provide legal protections for victims.

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