New members of Congress bring agency experience
- By Matthew Weigelt
- Nov 07, 2012
Some of the newly-elected members of Congress bring executive-branch experience to Capitol Hill. Clockwise from top left: Tammy Duckworth, Keith Rothfus, Elizabeth Warren and Ron DeSantis.
Of the 70-odd newly elected representatives and senators that will be on Capitol Hill next Congress, several are already familiar to agency officials – and four in particular bring departmental experience of their own:
Sen.-elect Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who won GOP Sen. Scott Brown’s seat, served as chairwoman of the Congressional Oversight Panel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program. She is also largely credited with creating the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Rep.-elect Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), a military veteran disabled during Operation Iraqi Freedom, became President Barack Obama’s assistant secretary of public and intergovernmental affairs at the Veterans Affairs Department in 2009. There, she oversaw the VA’s work to end veteran homelessness. She also pushed the department to attend to initiatives that benefit female veterans and increase accessibility for the department’s new Office of Online Communications.
Rep.-elect Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.) worked at the Homeland Security Department from 2006 to 2007. He created and then headed the department’s Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. The office works with faith-based organizations to provide disaster relief and other natural disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina.
And Rep.-elect Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) earned a commission as a judge advocate general officer in the Navy and he served nearly six years. During his naval service, he supported operations in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and then was sent to Iraq during the 2007 troop surge. There he was an advisor to a Navy SEAL commander in support of the SEAL mission in Iraq.
Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.