Reflections on a Career in Congress


A resident of Santa Barbara since 1964, Congresswoman Lois Capps represents California’s 24th District, which includes San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties, and a portion of Ventura County. She was sworn in as a member of Congress in 1998.

Rep. Capps has spearheaded and passed legislation on issues addressing national nursing shortage, violence against women, underage drinking, mental health services, research on pediatric rare diseases, provision of AEDs to local communities, diversification of clinical trials for effective treatments, CPR instructions in schools, hearing loss in newborns, Medicare coverage for patients suffering from Lou Gehrig’s disease, the expansion of TRICARE health coverage for military mothers, and rental car safety for consumers.

At the forefront of efforts to protect the environment and promote clean energy and green technology, she has led efforts to prevent new oil and gas drilling off our coast and on the public’s lands, strengthen oil pipeline safety and spill response, protect consumers from shouldering the financial burden of cleaning up water pollution in their water supplies, and conserve wildlife and rare species native to the Central Coast. She has also authored laws to establish a national system for ocean monitoring, expand conservation efforts for public lands, and strengthen labeling standards for organic foods.

Rep. Capps serves on the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and the Natural Resources Committee.

She is a member and has served as co-chair of numerous Congressional caucuses. She is the founder and co-chair of the House Nursing Caucus and was an original member and is honorary Vice-Chair, of the LGBT Equality Caucus.

Rep. Capps graduated from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington with a B.S. in Nursing, earned an M.A. in Religion from Yale University, and an M.A. in Education from U.C. Santa Barbara. She has received honorary doctorates from Pacific Lutheran University and Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary.

Spring 2016