VA congressman a VCU alumnus

Photos by Phillip Ranallo

Slide show and story by Emily Smith

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Rob Wittman has a new and very exciting job. He is the newly elected congressman for the 1st District of Virginia.

Wittman says one of his top priorities is to focus on the people be represents. He says he enjoys hearing from his constituents and working hard on the issues they say are important.

Wittman may be new to Congress, but he is not new to public service. He has held numerous public offices and served in the Virginia House of Delegates.

Wittman says VCU helped to prepare him for his career in Congress.

“I really learned a lot there,” said Wittman. “They not only taught you what was in the textbook, but they taught you practical aspects of things.”

Dr. Bob Holsworth, Dean of the College of Humanities and Science at VCU, remembers working closely with Wittman as he completed his degree.

“So, I was sure that Rob had the opportunity to do something big,” Holsworth said. “Maybe head of a state agency, maybe move up to the General Assembly. I actually wasn’t so sure that in a few years he’d be in Congress.”

Wittman did not see himself on Capitol Hill, but after the death of the 1st District congresswoman, Jo Ann Davis, he found himself with the Republican nomination to fill the seat.  Davis died of cancer in October of 2007. Wittman won the special election just two months later.

Wittman said he had to hit the ground running when he arrived in Washington, since he started in the middle of a congressional term.

“I was really blessed to have the staff that Jo Ann Davis had and for all of them to agree to come on board with us,” Wittman said.

Wittman is now enjoying his busy life in Washington.

“Days start early,” Wittman said. “They usually start around 7 a.m. and we usually end up around ten in the evening. They are long days, but they are good days.”

Wittman says they are good days which VCU helped to make possible.

It’s easy to go and visit your U.S. congressman to tell them what you think. For more information on where to find your representative click here.

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