Washington -- U.S. Representatives Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA-06), Elaine Luria (D-VA-02), Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ-11), Elissa Slotkin (D-MI-08), and Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) today joined with New Politics to launch the Service First Women’s Victory Fund, a first-of-its-kind campaign to elevate the collective voice of women service leaders, from Congress to the campaign trail. Reps. Luria and Sherrill are both U.S. Navy Veterans and Naval Academy graduates, while Rep. Houlahan is a former U.S. Air Force Officer. Reps. Elissa Slotkin and Abigail Spanberger are former officials in the Central Intelligence Agency. The new joint effort builds on the powerful impact these service leaders had on last year’s midterm elections, changing the face of Congress and helping bring servant leadership back to politics.
“It is not a coincidence that this freshmen class brought to Washington a record number of women veterans and service members to Congress,” said Representative Houlahan. “We represent a cohort that believes in putting the country we've served before any sort of partisan agenda. Those who've served have the power to heal this nation, and I'm excited to elect more women to Congress who share that same goal.”
“American women get things done, whether on the battlefield, at sea, in the intelligence agencies, or at the U.S. Capitol,” Representative Luria said. “Washington is a better place when we elect strong women with a history of serving our nation, and I'm thrilled to work to bring even more to Congress.”
"When I entered the Navy, I joined Americans with strikingly different backgrounds and experiences, from all corners of the country, to come together and serve our country,” said Representative Sherrill. “I’ve now joined one of the most exciting classes to enter the House, and I know Chrissy, Abigail, Elissa, and Elaine share my mission of bringing that same sense of service to the United States Congress. I’m excited to stand alongside them to promote more women with a background in service to run for office.”
“More than ever, we need to elect public servants to Congress who know exactly what it means to put people over partisan politics, and focus on the mission of improving the lives of those they represent.” said Representative Slotkin. “That’s exactly what women with military and service backgrounds know how to do, and I’m so proud to be part of an effort to support that new generation of service-centered leadership in Congress.”
“When I ran for Congress, I promised that I’d always put the needs of the American people over hyper-partisanship, political games, and inaction,” Representative Spanberger said. “Our group represents a strong coalition of women leaders who operate under that overarching commitment to public service. Through this new initiative, I look forward to elevating more women service leaders to positions of effective, visible leadership.”
“These incredible women leaders know what it means to put country over party and service over self, because that’s what they’ve done their entire lives,” said Emily Cherniack, Founder and Executive Director of New Politics. “We have been proud to support and get to know them, and believe they’re exactly the kinds of leaders we need to rebuild trust in our democracy and transform our politics. We are honored to partner with Reps. Luria, Houlahan, Sherrill, Slotkin, and Spanberger in the months ahead to continue building a movement to put service first.”
Through fundraising, speaking events, and policy discussions, the Service First Women’s Victory Fund will help amplify the voice of women service leaders in office, encourage more women service veterans to run for office, and build the next generation of political leadership. The Representatives’ reelection campaigns have partnered with New Politics, a bipartisan organization dedicated to electing outstanding leaders who have dedicated their lives to serving the country. The Service First Women’s Victory Fund will host a launch fundraiser on May 22nd in Washington, DC, followed by joint events across the country throughout the election cycle.
About Representative Luria
Congresswoman Elaine Luria represents Virginia’s Second Congressional District. Congresswoman Luria served 20 years in the Navy, retiring in 2017 at the rank of Commander. She deployed to the Middle East and Western Pacific, and culminated her Navy career by commanding a combat-ready unit of 400 sailors. Now a member of the House Armed Services Committee, Congresswoman Luria serves as Vice Chair of the Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces. She also made history as the first woman veteran from a military service branch to serve on the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs (HVAC), and the first to lead an HVAC Subcommittee. Congresswoman Luria graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and received a master’s in engineering management from Old Dominion University.
About Representative Houlahan
Representative Chrissy Houlahan is an Air Force veteran, engineer, entrepreneur, and educator who is continuing her career of service as the first woman ever to represent Pennsylvania's 6th District in Congress. Chrissy is the daughter and granddaughter of Holocaust survivors who came to America with nothing. She grew up in a military family; her parents met when her father and grandfather flew P3s in the same Navy squadron. She earned her engineering degree from Stanford with an ROTC scholarship that launched her service in the U.S. Air Force and Air Force Reserves, and later earned her M.S. in Technology and Policy from MIT. Chrissy has helped lead several thriving Southeastern Pennsylvania companies including AND1, a basketball apparel company headquartered in Paoli, and B Lab, the organization that launched the B Corporation movement. She went on to serve in Teach for America as a chemistry teacher at Simon Gratz High School in North Philadelphia, and then led and scaled a non-profit helping thousands of underserved students all across America build their literacy skills. These experiences helped shape her political vision of a great nation united by common values that leaves no one behind. She is committed to fighting for access to quality, affordable healthcare, common sense gun safety, government accountability and transparency, and working to build a strong, stable economy with good jobs and good benefits for everyone. She sits on three Committees: 1) House Armed Services Committee and its Subcommittee on Intelligence, Emerging Threats and Capabilities and the Subcommittee on Readiness, 2) House Foreign Affairs Committee and its Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations and the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and Nonproliferation, and 3) House Committee on Small Business. Chrissy is a leader driven by a spirit of service and is committed to standing up for the people in her community of southeastern Pennsylvania.
About Representative Sherrill
As the Representative for New Jersey’s 11th Congressional District, Congresswoman Sherrill is working to solve challenges and create opportunities for the people of New Jersey. After graduating from the United States Naval Academy, Congresswoman Sherrill spent almost 10 years on active duty in the United States Navy. She flew missions throughout Europe and the Middle East as a Sea King helicopter pilot, worked on the Battle Watch Floor in the European Theater during the Iraq invasion, and served as a Flag Aide to the Deputy Commander in Chief of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet. She also served as a Russian policy officer and worked on the implementation of our nuclear treaty obligations and oversaw the relationship between the U.S. Navy and Russian Federation Navy. After leaving the Navy, Congresswoman Sherrill attended law school, earning her degree from Georgetown University. She eventually joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Jersey, working as an Outreach and Re-entry Coordinator and then as an Assistant U.S. Attorney. Congresswoman Sherrill serves on the House Armed Services Committee and the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee, where she also serves as the Investigations and Oversight Subcommittee Chairwoman. She and her husband Jason, a fellow Naval Academy graduate, live in Montclair, New Jersey, with their four children.
About Representative Slotkin
Rep. Slotkin has spent her career in national service. She brings the same mission-focus that guided her through 14 years as a CIA officer and Pentagon official to her service on behalf of residents of Michigan’s 8th Congressional district — transcending partisan politics in order to take action on the issues affecting Michiganders every day.
Rep. Slotkin was in her first week of graduate school in New York City when the 9/11 attacks took place. On that day she knew that national service would define her career. She was recruited to join the Central Intelligence Agency as a Middle East analyst, and within a year was deployed to Iraq to serve alongside the military. Her three tours in a combat zone led to various defense and intelligence roles, including at the White House and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. She worked for President Bush as a member of the National Security Council staff and was asked to stay on when President Obama took office. She took on a series of leadership roles at the Defense Department, including serving as Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense, where she negotiated some of the Pentagon’s most sensitive national security matters from the fight against ISIS to the U.S. response to Russian aggression. Slotkin serves on the House Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees in Congress. She lives on her family farm in Holly, Michigan with her husband Dave, a retired Army officer and Apache pilot.
About Representative Spanberger
First as a CIA officer and now as the Congresswoman from Virginia's Seventh Congressional District, Congresswoman Spanberger took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. Congresswoman Spanberger began her career in public service as a federal law enforcement officer working narcotics and money laundering cases with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. She later joined the CIA as a case officer, where she served abroad collecting intelligence, managing assets, and overseeing high-profile programs. In 2014, Congresswoman Spanberger left the CIA to begin a career in public service before running for Congress in 2017. Currently, she serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Agriculture Committee, where she serves as Chair of the Conservation and Forestry Subcommittee. Congresswoman Spanberger lives with her husband, Adam, and three daughters in Henrico County. She is also a Girl Scout leader.
About New Politics
New Politics is the national, bipartisan organization that recruits, supports, and elects candidates who have dedicated their lives to serving our country, either in the military, our intelligence communities, or through national service programs like the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps. Founded in 2013, New Politics has helped power the movement of servant leaders who have run for office. In the 2018 cycle, the organization endorsed over 20 congressional candidates and nearly 30 state and local candidates, and helped raise over $7M for supported candidates, bringing into office a cohort that has defined this class of House freshmen. Over the coming year, New Politics will be scaling its efforts significantly to lower the barrier to entry for new service candidates across the country and defend the seats of elected service leaders in Congress.
Paid for by Service First Women’s Victory Fund, a joint fundraising committee authorized by Chrissy Houlahan for Congress, Elaine for Congress, Mikie Sherrill for Congress, Elissa Slotkin for Congress, and Spanberger for Congress.