BioHaving been recently re-elected to his ninth term representing Massachusetts's Sixth District, U.S. Representative John F. Tierney has developed a national reputation as an effective legislator fighting for families, seniors, and small businesses. The Congressman continues to be the only member from Massachusetts to serve on the Committee on Education and the Workforce, serving on the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training and the Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions in the 113th Congress.
Fighting for a vibrant middle class and working to create broad opportunity, Congressman Tierney has been an active leader on education and labor issues. He has spearheaded efforts to improve education at all levels including authoring key aspects of the Higher Education Act in an effort to make college more affordable for all students. During the last Congress he was also a leader in the effort to pass a one-year extension of the 3.4% interest rate for need-based Stafford loans, a substantial feat in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.
Congressman Tierney is also committed to creating more jobs and ensuring workers receive needed skills and training. This is reflected in his sponsorship and authorship of several key initiatives that strengthen laws protecting American workers. Such initiatives include the Green Jobs Act, which creates a comprehensive program to train and equip our workers to compete for jobs in the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries, and the Emergency Retiree Health Benefits Protection Act, which would prohibit profitable companies that promised employees retirement coverage from curtailing or eliminating benefits under their retiree health plans after an employee retires.
His hard work and commitment to ensuring the legislative branch conducts vigorous oversight have earned Congressman Tierney the Chairmanship of the National Security and Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform from 2007 through 2010 and a Speaker-appointed seat on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Chairman Tierney undertook a variety of investigations to ensure that our national security policy prioritizes a robust military and intelligence capability focused on 21st century threats, meaningful diplomatic initiatives, serious attention to nuclear non-proliferation efforts and a defense budget that efficiently uses taxpayer dollars.
In his Subcommittee's very first hearing, glaring deficiencies at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center and in the treatment of our seriously injured soldiers returning from duty in Iraq and Afghanistan living there were exposed. Congressman Tierney currently serves as Ranking Member of the Subcommittee and continues to work in a bipartisan manner with his Republican counterpart, working to strengthen oversight of the Department of Defense and protect our troops, country, and taxpayer dollars.
He also continues to prioritize efforts to provide all Americans with a fair playing field. Fighting for "Equal Pay for Equal Work", advocating for fair treatment of our fishing community, and protecting programs like Medicare and Social Security, Congressman Tierney is focused on the men and women he represents.
Additionally, Congressman Tierney believes that we can, and we should, have a government that is truly responsible to the American people -- not to special interest groups and lobbyists. To that end, he continues to be the leading advocate for the creation of a public financing system for congressional elections.
Born in Salem, Massachusetts, Congressman Tierney attended Salem Public Schools and graduated from Salem State College. He earned a law degree from Suffolk University and until he took office in January 1997 was partner in the law firm of Tierney, Kalis and Lucas for over 20 years. He and his wife, Patrice, continue to make Salem their home.