Dr. Judy Chu was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for California's 27th District in July 2009. She immediately got to work representing the interests of her constituents, voting on several environmental bills and working through the night on her first day in office, during a marathon debate on important healthcare reform legislation as part of her first assignment on the House Education and Labor Committee, where she served on the Subcommittees on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education and Healthy Families and Communities.
In the 112th Congress, Rep. Chu serves on the House Judiciary Committee, where she is a member of the Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security and the Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet subcommittees. She is also a member of the House Small Business Committee, where she is leading the Contracting and Workforce Subcommittee as the Ranking Democrat and serves on the Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access and Agriculture, Energy and Trade Subcommittees. In 2011, she was elected as the Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC).
In addition to her vote in favor of passage of the historic health care reform bill, Rep. Chu has championed a number of causes in Congress. She has used her extensive experience as a legislator and educator to help improve our nation’s education system, helping pass a landmark college affordability bill to boost federal college grants and keep student loan interest rates low. Last year, she also introduced a bill that would maintain adequate federal funding for much needed school lunch programs. She has also unveiled a new framework for awarding School Improvement Grants called Strengthening Our Schools (SOS), which provides a more holistic and research-based alternative to the more punitive and overly restrictive guidelines currently used.
She has continued to work hard to help Americans emerge from the recession, co-sponsoring a bill that would extend and expand the enormously successful Jobs NOW program, which uses federal stimulus funds to subsidize jobs at the local level and has already resulted in more than 11,000 jobs in Los Angeles County alone.
Congresswoman Chu is also a strong advocate for effective, humane and progressive immigration reform, having been an original co-sponsor of the Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR-ASAP) bill introduced by Rep. Luis Gutierrez last year.
Congresswoman Chu began her career as an educator and taught psychology at Los Angeles City College and East Los Angeles College for 20 years. She was first elected to the Garvey School District Board of Education in 1985.
She was then elected to the Monterey Park City Council, where she served as Mayor 3 times. From there, she was elected to the California State Assembly, where she was Chair of the powerful Appropriations Committee, which has control over all legislation with a fiscal impact to the state. While in the Assembly, she introduced and helped pass the most successful tax amnesty bill in the nation, which was estimated to bring in $300 million but actually brought in $4.8 billion in revenue for the state budget without raising taxes. She was then elected to the State Board of Equalization, California’s tax board.
Rep. Chu earned her B.A. in mathematics from UCLA and her Ph.D. in psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology.