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Pelosi First Woman to Lead Party in Congress

Following the elections of last week, U.S. Representative Nancy Pelosi emerged as the likely House Democratic leader, making her the first woman to lead either party in either House of Congress.

Rep. Pelosi has represented California###s 8th Congressional District, which includes most of the City of San Francisco, since 1987. As House Democratic Whip, a position she has held since October 2001, she was the highest-ranking woman in the history of the U.S. Congress. She is also the ranking Democrat on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee. She serves on the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services and Education. She has made fighting AIDS and breast cancer two of her top priorities.

Rep. Pelosi also chairs the Congressional Working Group on China, is Co-Chair of the AIDS Task Force of the House Democratic Caucus, and is Co-Chair of the Bio-Medical Research Caucus. She also served six years on the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (Ethics).

Congresswoman Pelosi comes from a family tradition of public service. Her father, Thomas D###Alesandro, Jr., served as Mayor of Baltimore for 12 years, after representing the city for five terms in Congress, where he served on the Appropriations Committee. Her brother, Thomas D###Alesandro III, also served as Mayor of Baltimore. Rep. Pelosi graduated from Trinity College in Washington, D.C. in 1962. Pelosi, who is 62, and her husband, Paul Pelosi, a native of San Francisco, have five children: Nancy Corinne, Christine, Jacqueline, Paul and Alexandra, and five grandchildren.