Elected to Congress in 2006, Mazie K. Hirono is now serving her third term representing Hawaii's 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Congresswoman's district includes rural Oahu, the seven Neighbor Islands, and the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.
Congresswoman Hirono serves on two key U.S. House committees: the Committee on Education and the Workforce and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. In November of 2010, Democratic colleagues unanimously elected Hirono to serve on the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. Hirono is an executive board member of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus and the Congressional Progressive Caucus. She is also a member of many other caucuses focused on issues relevant to Hawaii.
Hirono's legislative priorities include job creation, education, transportation, renewable energy, and the environment. The Congresswoman has been recognized for her leadership in advancing quality early education for America's children. Pre-K Now, national preschool advocacy organization, named Hirono its 2008 "Pre-K Champion" for her work and determination in passing the PRE-K Act (H.R. 3289) out of the Committee on Education and Labor on June 25, 2008.
Born in Fukushima, Japan on November 3,1947, Hirono became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1959, the year Hawai'i became a state. She is the first immigrant woman of Asian ancestry to be sworn into Congressional office.
Educated in Hawaii's public school system, Hirono graduated with honors from Kaimuki High School and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Hawai'i at Manoa. She earned her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C., where she focused on public interest law.
After graduation, she returned to Hawai'i where she served as a Deputy Attorney General before entering private practice. In 1980, she was elected to the Hawai'i State House of Representatives.
In 1994, Hirono was elected and served two four-year terms as Hawaii's 9th Lieutenant Governor.
Congresswoman Hirono is married to Leighton Kim Oshima.
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