Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, now in her fourteenth term as the Congresswoman for the District of Columbia, has been named one of the 100 most important American women in one survey and one of the most powerful women in Washington in another. The Congresswoman's work for full congressional voting representation and for full democracy for the people of the District of Columbia continues her lifelong struggle for universal human and civil rights.
Congresswoman Norton's accomplishments in breaking barriers for her disempowered district are matched by her success in bringing home unique economic benefits to her constituents. Among them are senatorial courtesy to recommend federal judges, the U.S. Attorney, and other significant federal law enforcement positions for the District; up to $10,000 per year for all D.C. high school graduates to attend any public U.S. college or university and up to $2,500 per year to many private colleges and universities, and a unique $5,000 D.C. homebuyer tax credit, which has sharply increased home ownership in the District.
Congresswoman Norton has brought significant economic development to the District of Columbia throughout her service in Congress, creating and preserving jobs in D.C. She brought the U.S. Department of Homeland Security headquarters compound to D.C. It's now under construction, and is the largest federal construction project in the country. She also brought the new headquarters for the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, to the District, along with an additional Metro station at New York Avenue, which resulted in the development of the NOMA neighborhood.
Congresswoman Norton helped end the city's most serious financial crisis in a century, in the 1990's,by achieving a historic package that for the first time restructured the financial relationship between Congress and the District, by transferring $5 billion in unfunded pension liabilities and billions more in state costs to the federal government.
The Congresswoman, who taught law full time before being elected, is a tenured professor of law at Georgetown University, teaching an upper-class seminar there every year. Yale Law School has awarded her the Citation of Merit for outstanding alumni, and Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences has awarded her the Wilbur Cross Medal for outstanding alumni, the highest awards conferred by each on alumni. She is the recipient of more than 50 honorary degrees.