Serving the people of New York’s Fifth Congressional District has been the focus of Congressman Gregory Meeks’ professional life for the past fourteen years. And during that time, he has earned the respect of his constituents, as well as both Democrats and Republicans in Congress and in New York state, as an effective, common-sense leader who gets things done.
At a time when politicians define themselves by their parties or ideologies, Congressman Meeks is a rare politician who puts solutions before partisan politics. He focuses on making government work for people, but when government is ineffective or gets in the way, he works to reform it and remove barriers that prevent people from getting ahead.
It is for those reasons, and many more, that Congressman Meeks is often described as “a rising star” and “a new generation of leadership.”
The Congressman’s achievements – from the legislation creating new opportunities in depressed areas of southeast Queens such as the establishments of $20 million in tax incentives for investments in the downtown Jamaica area; to the establishment of new commercial air service linking economically-depressed areas in upstate New York to JFK Airport in Queens; to new contracting opportunities for small minority and women owned-businesses – have touched almost every family in New York.
Elected in 1998, Congressman Meeks has been re-elected seven times by an overwhelming mandate by the people of New York’s 6th congressional district and enjoys a reputation as a consensus builder.
Today, Congressman Meeks fights, first and foremost, for policies that strengthen America’s working families. Thus he supports tax relief for working families that is paid for; eliminating the Alternative Minimum Tax. He also is a strong advocate for an increase in the minimum wage. Meanwhile, Congressman Meeks believes that we should not force our children and grandchildren to pay the massive debt employed by the Bush Administration and the GOP Congress.
On the Foreign policy front, as a Member of the influential House International Relations Committee, he seeks to promote policies that strengthen America’s national security and that protect our homeland and citizens. That’s why Congressman Meeks voiced strong opposition (and voted against authority to go to war in Iraq) to President Bush’s Iraq policy.
As a Member of the powerful House Financial Services Committee, Congressman Meeks has promoted policies for economic empowerment, which is what he termed as the "next civil rights movement". Whether it is access to capital, homeownership, wealth accumulation or economic development, the Congressman has been a steady and consistent champion on this important committee that has jurisdiction over all banking, securities and insurance issues. Congressman Meeks was recently appointed to Chair the Subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade.
With New York City being the financial capital of the world, the Congressman’s valuable input and strong record on the Committee has been recognized by some of New York’s largest employers in the financial services industry including – the New York Stock Exchange, NASDAQ, the American Stock Exchange, Citigroup, Bank of America, New York Life, MetLife, American Express, Mastercard International, NASP (the leading African-American organization for securities professionals) and many others.
Achieving a delicate balance often not seen, Congressman Meeks has also been a strong advocate for consumers. Meeks has led the fight to protect consumers from the crime against Identity theft. He has cosponsored legislation to help protect people’s personal financial information, and has hosted several forums informing consumer’s how to protect themselves. In 2006, he received the National Urban League’s prestigious “Congressional Leadership Award” for exemplary public service.
Congressman Meeks earned his bachelor’s degree at Adelphi University and he received his law degree from Howard University. He is a member of the Allen AME Church in St. Albans New York and is married to Simone-Marie Meeks. He has three daughters – Ebony, Aja, and Nia and resides in St. Albans, New York.