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Zoe Lofgren (born Sue Lofgren on December 21, 1947, in San Mateo, Californiamarker), American politician, has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1995, representing the 16th District of Californiamarker ( map), based in San Josemarker.


A lifelong Bay Areamarker resident, Lofgren attended Gunn High Schoolmarker in Palo Altomarker, earned her B.A. at Stanford Universitymarker and a J.D. at Santa Clara Universitymarker. She left the San Jose area for a few years after graduation from Stanford, to serve as a staff assistant to Congressman Don Edwards, in whose office she worked on, among other projects, the attempted impeachment of Richard Nixon. She was also instrumental in the creation of a Bay Area wilderness area that now bears the name of Edwards.

Returning to San Jose, Lofgren worked in Edwards' district office, while at the same time earning her law degree. After two years as partner at an immigration law firm in San Jose, she was elected first to a community college board, then to the Santa Clara Countymarker Board of Supervisors, where she served for 13 years. Lofgren also spent three years teaching classes on immigration law at her former law school at Santa Clara University.

In 1994, Edwards decided to retire after 32 years in Congress. Lofgren entered the Democratic primary—the real contest in this heavily Democratic district—as a decided underdog, but managed to defeat the favorite, former San Jose mayor Tom McEnery. Lofgren's victory virtually assured her of becoming only the second person to represent the district since its creation in 1963 (it was numbered as the 9th District from 1963 to 1975, as the 10th from 1975 to 1993 and has been the 16th since 1993). She has been reelected six times with no substantive opposition.

Lofgren is currently the chair of the 34-member California Democratic Congressional Delegation. She serves on the Judiciary Committee and is the chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law.

During the 110th Congress, Lofgren worked for the development of fusion energy. She initiated a bill that would accelerate its uses as an alternative energy solution. Another piece of legislation that she recently authored has the goal of providing lower Internet access rates to schools, libraries, and other public institutions.

Committee Assignments


Other Leadership Positions

  • Chair of the California Democratic Congressional Delegation

Electoral History


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