August 31, 2023
U.S. Congressional Delegation Visits Taiwan
Congressman Rob Wittman (R-VA), vice chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, will lead a delegation that will visit Taiwan from August 31-September 2, 2023 as part of a larger visit to the Indo-Pacific region. Other members of the delegation include Congressman Carlos Gimenez (R-FL) and Congresswoman Jen Kiggans (R-VA). The delegation will meet with senior Taiwan leaders to discuss U.S.-Taiwan relations, regional security, trade and investment, and other significant issues of mutual interest.
For the delegation’s bios, please refer to the page below.
Congressman Rob Wittman
Congressman Rob Wittman was first elected to the United States Congress to serve Virginia’s First Congressional District in 2007. While in office, he has focused on strengthening our military and supporting our nation’s veterans, promoting a flourishing economy through fiscal responsibility and pro-growth policies, fixing our crumbling infrastructure, increasing access to high-speed internet, and promoting workforce development through Career and Technical Education (CTE) and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs.
In the U.S. Congress, Congressman Wittman serves on the House Armed Services Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee, where he is well-positioned to represent the needs of Virginia’s First District. He has earned a strong reputation for being an advocate for our men and women in uniform and for being a champion of the Chesapeake Bay.
On the Armed Services Committee, Congressman Wittman serves as vice chairman of the full committee and the chairman of the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee. On the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee, Congressman Wittman oversees the largest portfolio of modernization programs on the House Armed Services Committee, with vast ramifications for the future of the U.S. military’s ground and air forces and munitions stockpiles. Congressman Wittman also serves on the House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). As co-chair of the Congressional Shipbuilding Caucus, he is a staunch advocate for a robust naval fleet and a healthy domestic shipbuilding industry. He also currently serves on the U.S. Naval Academy’s Board of Visitors.
As a member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, Congressman Wittman serves on both the Energy and Minerals Subcommittee, as well as the Water, Wildlife, and Fisheries Subcommittee, where he brings his professional expertise in water quality, fisheries, and other natural resource issues. He is a proud champion of the Chesapeake Bay for its environmental and economic attributes and has introduced legislation that will increase the accountability and effectiveness of cleaning up the bay. He serves as co-chair of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Caucus, which brings the bay’s issues into focus for Members of Congress.
As a co-chair of the House Rural Broadband Caucus, Congressman Wittman is leading the way to bring high-speed internet to the unserved areas of the First District and the nation. His Serving Rural America Act served as a model for the NTIA Broadband Infrastructure Program, a $288 million funding program for partnerships between localities and providers of fixed broadband service to support broadband deployment. His other infrastructure priorities include deepening and widening the Port of Virginia, easing congestion on I-95, improving traffic and safety concerns along I-64, improving and expanding the Long Bridge, expanding the capacity of the Virginia Railway Express (VRE), and providing sustainable funding mechanisms to Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Ronald Reagan National Airport (DCA).
Congressman Wittman was re-elected for his eighth full term in the House of Representatives in November 2022 and prior to that, he served in several levels of government. Congressman Wittman won his first campaign for public office in 1986 when he was elected to the Montross Town Council, where he served for 10 years, four of them as mayor. In 1995, he was elected to the Westmoreland County Board of Supervisors and was elected its chairman in 2003. In 2005, voters in the 99th Legislative District elected Rob to the Virginia House of Delegates, where he served until his election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2007.
Prior to his election to Congress, Rob spent 26 years working in state government, most recently as field director for the Virginia Health Department’s Division of Shellfish Sanitation. Earlier in his career, he worked as an environmental health specialist for local health departments in Virginia’s Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula regions.
He holds a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University, a Master of Public Health degree in Health Policy and Administration from the University of North Carolina, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Virginia Tech.
Congressman Carlos Gimenez
Carlos Antonio Gimenez proudly represents the people of Florida’s 28th Congressional district, encompassing all of Monroe County and the southwest portion of Miami-Dade County.
First elected to Congress in 2020, he serves on the House Armed Services Committee, the Homeland Security Committee, and the House Select Committee on Strategic Competition between the US & the Chinese Communist Party. He is the first career firefighter paramedic to ever serve in Congress.
Carlos is a husband, father, grandfather, and a public servant who has dedicated his life to serving the Miami-Dade community.
Born in 1954, Carlos arrived to the United States shortly after the Communist takeover of his native homeland of Cuba, settling in the Little Havana neighborhood in Miami. His family’s experience helped shape his servant’s heart and his dedication to this community, understanding the importance of protecting individuals’ freedom to pursue their potential.
Carlos began his journey of public service in 1975 when he joined the City of Miami Fire Department. There, he embarked on a 25-year career as a firefighter in his community, with the last nine years of his tenure as Chief of the department – the very first Cuban-American to serve as the Chief of the City of Miami Fire Department.
Congressman Gimenez is married to his wife Lourdes. They have three adult children – Carlos, Julio and Lourdes – and six grandchildren.
In 2000, Carlos was appointed Manager of the City of Miami, overseeing a $500 million annual budget and nearly 4,000 city government employees, with the goal of implementing critical fiscal and administrative reforms for the sustainability of City of Miami operations. In this capacity, Carlos reduced the city’s tax rate to the lowest level in 50 years while generating more revenue for the city. Four years later, Carlos was elected as Miami-Dade County Commissioner where he served the county’s 7th district until 2011.
In the summer of 2011, Carlos was elected as Mayor of Miami-Dade County, the highest-ranking official of Florida’s largest county. He maintained his commitment to bringing fiscal responsibility needed at the county level, working to expand transparency, renegotiate contracts with public sector labor unions and reduce the county government workforce, and implementing the largest tax cut in the county’s history saving Miami-Dade County taxpayers $2 billion. He was subsequently re-elected as Mayor in 2012 and again in 2016.
Carlos is a proud graduate from Christopher Columbus High School in Westchester, FL and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from Barry University in Miami, FL. He obtained his paramedic certification at Miami-Dade College and completed the Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Congresswoman Jen Kiggans
Congresswoman Jen Kiggans is proudly serving Virginia’s Second Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, which includes Virginia Beach, the Eastern Shore, part of Chesapeake and Southampton, Isle of Wight, Suffolk, and Franklin City.
Jen is a proud Navy Wife to her husband Steve, a retired F-18 pilot, and mom to their four amazing children who motivate her every day to fight for a stronger future for Virginia and our nation as a whole.
Prior to serving Virginians in public office, Jen served as a helicopter pilot in the U.S. Navy and worked in our nation’s healthcare system as a Geriatric Nurse Practitioner, serving America’s aging population.
Jen was winged as a Naval Aviator in 1995. She served our nation for a total of 10 years as a helicopter pilot flying H-46 and H-3 helicopters, completing two deployments to the Persian Gulf. As a former Navy helicopter pilot, Navy spouse, and now Navy Mom, Jen is a tireless advocate for the military community and is a strong voice for them in Congress.
After serving in the U.S. Navy, Jen used her GI Bill benefits to go back to school and become a board-certified Adult-Geriatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. A graduate of Old Dominion University’s Nursing School and Vanderbilt University’s Nurse Practitioner program, Jen has worked in several long-term care and nursing facilities in Virginia Beach and Norfolk in addition to serving as a primary care provider for a small private practice in Virginia Beach.
After years of growing frustration listening to politicians on the evening news and watching as division and negative rhetoric derailed legislative progress on issues important to her family and her community, Jen took her experience of working with a team to accomplish the mission at hand to Richmond. She served three sessions in the Virginia State Senate, where she successfully championed legislation to establish a Military Spouse Liaison and advocated for patients, families, and caregivers in long-term care facilities.
Jen comes to Congress determined to bring civility and competence to politics – something she believes is severely lacking in all levels of government – and provide Virginians with the strong, independent leadership in Washington they deserve.
Jen, Steve, and their four kids live in Virginia Beach with their dog and newly adopted kitten.