Rep. Byron served as a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee, where she was elected sub-committee chairman having oversight of 42% of the Defense Department's budget. She was a member of the Interior and Insular Affairs Committee, and the Select Committee for Aging. From 1983-86, Mrs. Byron chaired the House Special Panel on Arms Control and Disarmament. In 1987, she was elected Chairman of the Military Personnel and Compensation subcommittee, becoming the first woman chosen for a prominent leadership role on the Armed Services Committee. In her oversight, she presided over policy issues that, with the dismantling of the Warsaw Pact and the stunning changes in the Soviet Union, reshaped the American military.
Mrs. Byron served on the following committees: National Parks and Public Lands, and Water Power Offshore resources for the Interior Committee; Housing and consumer Interests for the Select Committee on the Aging. In addition to her committee assignments, Mrs Byron was appointed by the Speaker of the House to serve on the Leadership Task Force on AIDS and the Task Force on Health in 1988 and 1989 respectively.
Mrs. Byron serves on the Board of Directors of CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield of Maryland , Farmers and Mechanics Bank and LMI. Mrs. Byron served on the Board of Directors of McDonnell-Douglas Co.,Constellation Energy. and UNC of Annapolis.
She serves on the Executive Panel to the Chief of Naval Operations, the Air Force Memorial Foundation and the Henry M Jackson Foundation. She was also a member of NASA's Technology and Commercialization Advisory Committee and a member of the Secretary of Defense's Advisory Committee on Women in Service. Upon leaving Congress, President Bush appointed her a Commissioner of the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission.
In 1993, she was awarded the President's Medal, Johns Hopkins University. Mrs. Byron received an honorary degree from Boston University, also Mount Saint Mary's College and Frostburg State University.
President Clinton appointed Mrs. Byron to the Board of Visitors, United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland in 1995, which she chaired from 1998-2003. Maryland Governor Glendening appointed her to the Maryland Technology Developement Coporation (TEDCO) in 2000 and served as its chair.
In 1994 she founded Byron Butcher and Associates that provides advice and assistance in Congressional and governmental matters.
Born in Baltimore, Mrs. Byron was raised in Washington, DC where she graduated from the National Cathedral School. She later attended Hood College in Frederick, Maryland. Her late husband, Goodloe E. Byron, served in Congress from 1971 until his death in 1978. Mrs. Byron has three children, Goodloe E.,Jr.,Kimball, and Mary McComas Kunst. She is the grandmother of seven. In 1986, Mrs. Byron married B. Kirk Walsh, a Washington businessman. She has resided in Frederick since 1958.