Rep. Steve Israel
Honorary Board Member since 2008
Congressman Steve Israel represents New York's 3rd Congressional District, including the Long Island communities of Huntington, Babylon, Islip, Smithtown and Oyster Bay. He was first sworn into Congress in 2001.
Israel is a member of the House Appropriations Committee. He serves on the Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee, which funds the Department of Energy and Army Corps of Engineers; the Financial Services Subcommittee; and the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee, which funds the U.S. State Department and all U.S. foreign policy activities.
Israel was appointed to the Select Intelligence Oversight Panel, which consists of only 13 Members who review budgets and programs by the US intelligence community. The panel was a key recommendation of the 9-11 Commission.
Israel previously served on the House Armed Services Committee and the House Financial Services Committee.
Israel is considered a leader on U.S. energy security, reducing dependence on foreign oil, lowering energy costs, and creating an innovative clean technology economy. His key energy accomplishments include proposing and helping to pass the successful "Cash for Clunkers" program; successfully leading opposition to the former Bush Administration's budget cuts for energy efficiency and renewable energy; and passing legislation to restore Obama Administration reductions for hydrogen fuel research and development. "Congressional Quarterly" called Israel's comprehensive energy security proposals "an ambitious blueprint for energy issues."
In 2009, Israel proposed and passed the "Solar Villages Initiative," which will spread U.S. solar energy technologies in villages throughout the developing world.
He also passed legislation that will lower utility bills by making it easier for families and small businesses to finance the installation energy-efficient and renewable energy technologies.
Veterans and Military Families
A passionate and relentless advocate for veterans and military families, Israel has secured more than $3.4 million in overdue benefits for Long Islanders who served their country. He has visited U.S. troops in conflict areas on seven occasions, including visiting highly remote fire bases in Afghanistan.
Civil and Human Rights
Israel is also a staunch defender of human and civil rights. In 2007, he withstood strong opposition when he led the fight against reports of unconstitutional religious coercion and proselytizing in U.S. military academies.
The Middle East and Israel
As a Member of the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee, Israel leads the House in supporting U.S. assistance for the State of Israel and has been an active voice on behalf of US-Israeli relations. He was considered an instrumental Congressional influence in helping to monitor and close tunnels from Egypt to the Gaza strip.
Long Island Accomplishments
Among Israel's local accomplishments are securing record-level federal investments to protect the Long Island Sound; seeking to protect Long Island taxpayers by changing the federal tax code to reflect the local cost-of-living; and supporting local women's health initiatives -a priority in his role as Co-Chair of the House Cancer Caucus.
Israel enjoys writing, and published an anthology of historic military speeches entitled "Charge." Considered a consensus builder, he admits being highly partisan about one thing: the New York Mets.
He is married to Suffolk County Family Court Judge Marlene Budd and has two daughters as well as two miniature schnauzers named Max and Gracie.
Years of Service
First term: 2001-2002 (107th Congress)
Second term: 2003-2004 (108th Congress)
Third term: 2005-2006 (109th Congress)
Fourth term: 2007-2008 (110th Congress)
Fifth term: 2009 - present (111th Congress)