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Printer-friendly web page: A biography of Congressman Michael E. Capuano (D-Mass.)
Representative Michael E. Capuano
Michael Everett Capuano is currently serving his seventh term as a Representative in Congress for Massachusetts' historic Eighth District. The Eighth Congressional District includes Cambridge, Somerville, Chelsea and approximately 70% of Boston.
Congressman Capuano is a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the House Committee on Financial Services. He also serves on the House Democratic Leadership team as a member of the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee. Mike serves as Chair of the Committee on Organization, Study and Review, charged with analyzing the rules of the House Democratic Caucus and recommending changes. In November of 2006, Mike was appointed to head the Transition by then Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi as Democrats prepared for a majority role in the 110th Congress. In January of 2007, Speaker Pelosi appointed Mike to chair the Special Task Force on Ethics Enforcement. In March of 2008, a resolution establishing an Office of Congressional Ethics was passed, involving non-Members of the House in ethics matters for the first time in history.
Mike works for his constituents on local, national and international levels. On the local level, he fought to protect Massachusetts' share of federal transportation dollars during the debate over funding levels for the "Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users". Through his efforts, Massachusetts received more than $5 billion over six years. As a Member of the Financial Services Committee, Mike succeeded in providing assistance for the development of new intergenerational housing for grandparents raising their grandchildren. Mike has also focused on ensuring that 2, 3, and 4 family homes, such as those commonly found in the 8th district, are treated the same as single family homes when it comes to federal assistance. In addition, he has worked to ensure that Massachusetts' high cost of housing is taken into account when determining qualifications for assistance and mortgage loans. That is why Mike fought to significantly expand the number of Massachusetts citizens eligible for home loans issued by the Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac by increasing loan limits for single-family homes and for 2, 3, and 4 family homes.
On the national level, moved by the story of a young man forced out of school and into hiding after telling authorities of a crime he witnessed, Mike filed the "Young Witness Assistance Act" to create a grant program at the Department of Justice for locally developed juvenile witness assistance programs. Mike also succeeded in passing a law to require Medicare coverage for vision rehabilitation services. These services help restore safety and independence to seniors who suffer from vision loss.
On the international level, Mike co-founded and co-chairs the Congressional Caucus on Sudan. He has emerged as a leading Congressional voice, fighting the ongoing atrocities and genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan. He has traveled to the region, met with then United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan and US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton to urge that additional peacekeepers be moved into Darfur, and secured an additional $50 million in funding for the African Union Mission in Sudan.
Mike also created and co-chairs the bipartisan Congressional Former Mayors' Caucus, the Congressional Caucus on Community Health Centers, and the Empowered Communities Caucus. Mike has secured funding for a variety of 8th district projects. Some of these include money to: restore the Chelsea Street Bridge, continue planning for the Urban Ring, purchase technology for Roxbury Community College, continue funding the empowerment zone, and expand the Fenway Community Health Center's HIV prevention, mental health and substance abuse programs.
Prior to serving in Congress, Mike was the Mayor of Somerville, MA from January of 1990 through December of 1998. Mike also served as Alderman for Ward Five in Somerville, Massachusetts from 1977-1979, the same seat his father once held. From 1985 to 1989, Mike served as an Alderman-at-Large, a position he held for two terms.
Mike was born in Somerville, Massachusetts in 1952 to Andrew Capuano of Somerville and Rita Garvey Capuano of Allston-Brighton. Andrew joined the military service 10 months prior to Pearl Harbor; served in both the US Navy and US Army; received a Bronze Star while serving under General Patton; spent 19 months in military hospitals after being wounded in Germany and was honorably discharged as a Disabled Veteran.
Mike Capuano graduated from Somerville High School in 1969, received a Bachelor of Arts from Dartmouth College in 1973, and a law degree from Boston College Law School in 1977. He passed the Massachusetts Bar in 1977. Mike also took graduate tax law classes at Boston University Law School.
Mike is married to Barbara Teebagy Capuano. Barbara also graduated from Somerville High School, received her B.S. from Boston State College in 1974 and earned her MBA from Babson College in 1976. Barbara became a Certified Public Accountant in 1978. Mike and Barbara have two sons, Michael and Joseph. Both graduated from Somerville High School, graduated from Massachusetts colleges and are currently working in the Commonwealth.
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