Current Position: US Representative for MA US House District 5 since 2013
Former Position(s): State Senator from 2011 – 2013; State Delegate from 2008 – 2011
Assistant Speaker of the House
In #200Days, we’ve made historic investments in American families to stabilize our #childcare system and cut poverty in half. Just think about what we can accomplish in the next 200 days, and beyond, to put women, families, and equity first.
Full Katherine Clark: House’s ‘Archaic Rules’ Are A Distraction | MTP Daily | MSNBC
News & Events
Congresswoman Webpage – September 11, 2021 (Short)
Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark (MA-5) released the following statement in advance of the 20th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the deadliest terrorist attack in United States history.
“Today marks twenty years since our nation was attacked and forever reshaped. To the brave service members and first responders who sacrificed their lives, their health, and their wellbeing on that day, and in the years since, we are profoundly grateful. To the family members of those fallen, we honor the memory of your loved ones and your incredible loss. To the Muslim Americans who have suffered discrimination in the wake of 9/11, we vow to do better. And to the children who have grown up never knowing an America not at war, we will continue our work for peace.
Source: Government page
Congresswoman Katherine Clark proudly serves the Fifth District of Massachusetts. She was first elected in a special election in December of 2013.
Katherine’s career in public service is driven by her commitment to helping children and families succeed. She is a vocal advocate for ending wage discrimination, protecting women’s health care, access to affordable, high-quality child care, paid family leave, safer schools, and other reforms to address the challenges women and families face. She believes that Congress must work to end the glaring disconnect between the needs of families at home and priorities in Washington.
In Congress, she brings her experience as a state senator, state representative, general counsel for the Massachusetts Office of Child Care Services, and policy chief for the state attorney general.
Katherine represents a diverse district comprised of 24 cities and towns that stretch from the coastal communities of Revere and Winthrop through the economic engine of MetroWest.
In fall 2020, she was elected by her colleagues to serve as Assistant Speaker of the 117th Congress after serving as the Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus during the previous session. Additionally, she serves as a member of the Steering and Policy Committee within the Caucus.
Katherine is a member of the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations and three subcommittees within Appropriations: Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies; Legislative Branch; and Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies.
Katherine is a proud member of several caucuses in Congress, including the Congressional Progressive Caucus and the Women’s Caucus.
Katherine, her husband Rodney, and their three children Addison, Riley, and Nathaniel live in Melrose.
Bicameral Task Force on Climate Change
Medicare for All Caucus
Peace Corps Caucus
Prescription Drug Abuse Caucus
WASHINGTON, DC OFFICE2448 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-2836
Hours: To mitigate the spread of coronavirus, D.C. office staff will be working remotely. Please call if you need assistance.
DISTRICT OFFICE157 Pleasant St, Suite 4
Malden, MA 02148
Phone: (617) 354-0292
Hours: To mitigate the spread of coronavirus, District office staff will be working remotely. Please call if you need assistance.
METROWEST REGIONAL OFFICEBy appointment only
116 Concord Street, Suite 1
Framingham, MA 01702
Phone: (508) 319-9757
Katherine Marlea Clark (born July 17, 1963) is an American politician who has served as the United States representative for Massachusetts’s 5th congressional district since 2013, and as the assistant House Democratic leader (officially, the “Assistant Speaker“) since 2021, making her the fourth-highest-ranking House Democrat. Her district includes many of Boston‘s northern and western suburbs, such as Medford, Framingham, Woburn, Waltham, and Clark’s hometown of Melrose. A member of the Democratic Party, Clark was a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives from 2008 to 2011, and of the Massachusetts Senate from 2011 to 2013.
Born in Connecticut, Clark worked as an attorney in several states, before moving to Massachusetts in 1995, where she worked in state government. She joined the Melrose School Committee in 2002, becoming committee chair in 2005. She was first elected to the state legislature in 2008, and contributed to legislation regarding criminal justice, education, and municipal pensions. She won the 2013 special election for the U.S. House of Representatives, to succeed Ed Markey, in the 5th district, and sits on the House Appropriations Committee.
Early life and career
Katherine Marlea Clark was born on July 17, 1963, in New Haven, Connecticut. She attended St. Lawrence University, Cornell Law School, and Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. She studied in Nagoya, Japan, in 1983.
In her early career, she worked as an attorney in Chicago. She then moved to Colorado, where she worked as a clerk for Judge Alfred A. Arraj of the United States District Court for the District of Colorado and later as a staff attorney for the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council. She moved to Massachusetts in 1995 and became general counsel for the state Office of Child Care Services.
In 2001, Clark moved to Melrose, where she was elected to the Melrose School Committee, taking her seat in January 2002. She first ran for the Massachusetts Senate in 2004 and lost to Republican incumbent Richard Tisei. In January 2005, she was unanimously elected chairwoman of the Melrose School Committee. In 2006, she ran for the 32nd Middlesex seat in the Massachusetts House of Representatives when incumbent Mike Festa began a run for Middlesex district attorney but withdrew after he dropped out of the race.
Clark was appointed co-chair of Victory 2006, the state Democratic Party’s campaign and fundraising effort for the 2006 gubernatorial election. She spent some time as Chief of Policy and Government Relations in the Massachusetts Attorney General‘s office.
Massachusetts House of Representatives
Festa resigned his state House seat in October 2007 to become Secretary of Elder Affairs in the Deval Patrick administration, and Clark entered the special election to succeed him. During the campaign, she emphasized her experience as an attorney and made “developing stability in state aid” her top policy issue. She won the Democratic primary in January with 65% of the vote, defeating two other Melrose Democrats. She defeated Republican real estate businessman Mark B. Hutchison, 63% to 37%. In November 2008, she was reelected to a full term unopposed.
When Tisei resigned his state senate seat to run for lieutenant governor of Massachusetts, Clark ran for his seat. In the Democratic primary, she defeated Stoneham attorney Michael S. Day, 64%–36%. In the November 2010 general election, she defeated Republican Craig Spadafora, 52%–48%.
Clark was sworn in on January 5, 2011. She is a pro-choice legislator and has been endorsed in her campaigns by NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts and the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund.
In 2011, Clark was co-chair of the Joint Committee on Public Service, where she was lead author of the Senate version of a bill to reform municipal pensions. For her work in 2011, she received legislator of the year awards from the Massachusetts Municipal Association and the Massachusetts Police Association. In 2012, she authored a law that takes steps to ensure that all Massachusetts students read at grade level by third grade. Also in 2012, her bill extending restraining orders in domestic violence cases to cover victims’ pets, which are often used as pawns in abusive relationships, was signed as part of a larger law on animal shelters. In 2013, she co-sponsored a bill expanding the state’s wiretapping authority, which was strictly limited under existing law, in order to help police better investigate violent street crime. At the same time, she co-sponsored a bill to secure electronic privacy protections, requiring police to have probable cause before investigating the electronic records of individuals. She filed another bill tightening sex offender laws, imposing stricter penalties and making offender data more accessible to agencies and the public. The Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts named Clark its 2013 Legislator of the Year for her service on women’s issues.
Clark’s committee assignments in the state Senate were as follows:
- Judiciary (Chair)
- Mental Health and Substance Abuse (Vice Chair)
- Post Audit and Oversight (Vice Chair)
- Public Health
- Public Safety and Homeland Security
- Steering and Policy (Chair)
U.S House of Representatives
Clark was the Democratic nominee in the 2013 special election for the U.S. House of Representatives in Massachusetts’s 5th congressional district. The district’s longtime incumbent, Ed Markey, had just been elected to the United States Senate six months into his 19th term. In a heavily contested Democratic primary—the real contest in this heavily Democratic district—she was endorsed by Massachusetts attorney general Martha Coakley and EMILY’s List. On October 15, 2013, she won the primary with a plurality of 32% of the vote. Her closest competitor was Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian, with 22% of the vote. On December 10, as expected, she easily won the special election.
Clark was sworn into office on December 12, 2013, and sits on the House Appropriations Committee. In a 2014 interview with The Boston Globe, she compared life in Washington to the television series House of Cards, saying “It’s exactly like here, minus the murders.”
Clark was unopposed in her bid for a full term in 2014.
In March 2015, Clark decided not to attend the speech by Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu before a joint session of Congress. She affirmed a commitment to maintaining and strengthening the relationship between the U.S. and Israel but noted that the invitation was offered without first consulting the Obama administration.
Clark has introduced legislation in response to Internet harassment, most notably resulting from the Gamergate controversy, and has advocated for more stringent enforcement of existing laws. After introducing legislation that would criminalize “swatting” (falsely reporting an ongoing critical incident to dispatch an emergency response), she was herself targeted by a false report of an active shooter at her home.
In January 2017, Clark announced a boycott of Donald Trump’s inauguration. She was part of a small group of House and Senate members who chose to boycott the ceremony. Her reason was her desire not to “normalize” Trump’s promotion of “bigoted, misogynist, anti-Semitic, and racist claims.”
House Democratic Caucus vice chair
House Democratic assistant speaker
On November 18, 2020, it was announced that Clark had defeated Rhode Island congressman David Cicilline by a vote of 135 to 92 to succeed Ben Ray Luján as Assistant Speaker, the number four spot in Democratic house leadership.
Clark has been mentioned as a possible candidate to succeed Pelosi as Speaker of the House.
- Committee on Appropriations
- Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education
- Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development
- Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch
- Animal Protection Caucus
- Armenian Caucus
- Autism Caucus
- Baby Caucus
- Bicameral Task Force on Climate Change
- Biomedical Research Caucus
- Bipartisan Congressional Task Force on Alzheimer’s Disease
- Career and Technical Education
- Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC)
- Congressional Women’s Caucus
- Cranberry Caucus
- Internet Caucus
- Hellenic Caucus
- Heroin Task Force
- LGBT Equality Caucus
- Medicare for All Caucus
- Peace Corps Caucus
- Pre-K Caucus
- Prescription Drug Abuse Caucus
- Safe Climate Caucus
- Small Brewers Caucus
- Sustainable Energy & Environment Coalition
- Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission
- Congressional Progressive Caucus
Clark is married to Rodney S. Dowell, Chief Bar Counsel for the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers, the state entity that regulates the legal profession in Massachusetts. They live in Melrose and have three children, one of whom identifies as non-binary.
- Miller, John (December 4, 2013). “A look at the two candidates in Tuesday’s special election”. The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on March 11, 2020. Retrieved January 20, 2014.
- Welch, William F.; James, Stephen F., eds. (2009). “Katherine M. Clark”. Public Officers of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (2009–2010). Commonwealth of Massachusetts. p. 107. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2013.
- “About”. State Senator Katherine Clark (official website). Archived from the original on September 27, 2013. Retrieved June 29, 2013.
- Laidler, John (February 8, 2004). “Tisei faces rare challenge”. The Boston Globe.
- Official Congressional Directory, 2013–2014 113th Congress. Joint Committee on Printing. 2014. pp. 128–129. ISBN 978-0-16-091922-0. Archived from the original on January 8, 2021. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
- “MA State Senate – Middlesex & Essex Race – November 2, 2004”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- Laidler, John (November 7, 2004). “Area GOP candidates strike out in 5 races”. The Boston Globe.
- Cole, Caroline Louise (January 9, 2005). “Melrose: New leader for school board”. The Boston Globe.
- Cole, Caroline Louise (March 16, 2006). “Melrose: Clark withdraws from race”. The Boston Globe.
- Laidler, John (October 8, 2006). “Political Notebook: On the move to boost party”. The Boston Globe.
- Laidler, John (February 10, 2008). “Primaries over, final races begin”. The Boston Globe.
- “MA State House – Thirty-Second Middlesex – Special Election – D Primary Race – Feb 05, 2008”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- “Our Campaigns – MA State House – Thirty-Second Middlesex – Special Election Race – Mar 04, 2008”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- Laidler, John (March 9, 2008). “Newly elected are ready: Two special votes fill House seats”. The Boston Globe.
- “Our Campaigns – MA State House – Thirty-Second Middlesex Race – Nov 04, 2008”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- “Journal of the House” (PDF). Massachusetts House of Representatives. March 13, 2008. pp. 1154–1155. Archived (PDF) from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved January 20, 2014.
- “Katherine Clark”. Ballotpedia. Archived from the original on March 21, 2009. Retrieved October 19, 2013.
- “Race Details”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- “Melrose Primary: Clark wins Senate; Lucas takes GOP nomination in House race”. Melrose Free Press. September 15, 2010. Archived from the original on October 20, 2013. Retrieved July 3, 2013.
- “Our Campaigns – MA State Senate – Middlesex & Essex Race – Nov 02, 2010”. Our Campaigns. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- “Journal of the Senate”. Massachusetts Senate. January 5, 2011. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014. Retrieved January 20, 2014.
- “NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts releases voters guide Archived October 18, 2013, at the Wayback Machine“. NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts. August 26, 2010.
- “The Pro-Choice Voters Guide”. NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts. Fall 2012. Missing or empty
- “We’re Proud to Congratulate Our Endorsed Candidates”. Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund of Massachusetts, Inc. Missing or empty
- Bierman, Noah (May 25, 2011). “Unions soften tone on health: Put positive spin on Senate plan; Bill aims to cut municipal costs”. The Boston Globe.
- “Governor Patrick Signs Pension Reform Legislation”. Office of the Governor of Massachusetts (press release). November 18, 2011. Archived from the original on July 2, 2013. Retrieved July 3, 2013.
- “MA honors 9 Legislators of Year”. The Massachusetts Municipal Association. January 25, 2012. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
- Laforme, William (November 2, 2012). “Clark is MA Police Association’s Legislator of the Year”. Wakefield Patch. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
- “Governor Patrick signs legislation to help close achievement gaps in reading and get all students to proficiency by Grade 3”. Office of the Governor of Massachusetts (press release). September 26, 2012.
- “Pets and Domestic Violence”. MSPCA-Angell (Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals-Angell Animal Medical Center).
- O’Connell, Joe (August 3, 2012). “Patrick signs animal control reform bill in Ashland”. MetroWest Daily News. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
- Andersen, Travis (January 28, 2013). “Bill seeks end to strict limit on targets of wiretap law”. The Boston Globe.
- “An Act updating privacy protections for personal electronic information”. The 188th General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
- Smith, Erin (May 8, 2013). “More info on Level 1 offenders urged”. Boston Herald.
- McKim, Jenifer B. (January 24, 2013). “Bill tightens law on sex offenders: Would give public more data”. The Boston Globe.
- “WBA Holds Annual Meeting and Newly Admitted Lawyers Reception”. Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts. March 21, 2013. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
- “Member Profile: Katherine Clark”. Massachusetts General Court. Archived from the original on March 22, 2013. Retrieved July 3, 2013.
- Miller, Joshua (July 18, 2013). “Coakley backs Katherine Clark in bid for Markey’s seat”. The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on August 3, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- “EMILY’s List Endorses Katherine Clark for Congress”. EMILY’s List. September 20, 2013. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved September 20, 2013.
- Miller, Joshua (October 17, 2013). “Katherine Clark, Frank Addivinola win primaries in race to replace Ed Markey in US House”. The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- Schultheis, Emily (October 15, 2013). “Katherine Clark wins Massachusetts special primary”. Politico. Archived from the original on October 16, 2013. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
- “Some Mass. Lawmakers Already Eyeing Markey Seat”. WBUR News. Associated Press. February 22, 2013. Archived from the original on February 25, 2013. Retrieved February 23, 2013.
- “Committee Information”. United States House of Representatives. Archived from the original on May 9, 2015. Retrieved January 30, 2014.
- Jan, Tracy (June 26, 2014). “Clark on making connections across the aisle”. The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on August 3, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- Randall, Eric (March 3, 2015). “Which Massachusetts Delegates Sat Out the Netanyahu Speech in Congress?”. Boston. Metrocorp, Inc. Archived from the original on March 5, 2015. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
- Clark, Katherine (March 10, 2015). “Sexism in Cyberspace”. The Hill. Archived from the original on August 23, 2018. Retrieved April 21, 2015.
- Joshua Miller. Police swarm Katherine Clark’s home after apparent hoax Archived August 6, 2018, at the Wayback Machine. Boston Globe, 1 Feb 2016.
- Tim Murphy. This Democratic Congresswoman Wants the FBI to Take on Gamergate Archived April 17, 2019, at the Wayback Machine. Mother Jones, 12 Mar 2015.
- Herndon, Astead W. (January 5, 2017). “Katherine Clark to skip Trump’s inauguration in protest”. Boston Globe. Archived from the original on June 30, 2017. Retrieved January 6, 2017.
- March, Mary Tyler (November 28, 2018). “Clark wins spot as Dem Caucus vice chair”. TheHill. Archived from the original on November 26, 2020. Retrieved November 18, 2020.
- “Katherine Clark elected to leadership post – The Boston Globe”. BostonGlobe.com. Archived from the original on November 12, 2020. Retrieved November 18, 2020.
- https://thehill.com/homenews/house/526507-katherine-clark-secures-no-4-leadership-spot-for-house[dead link]
- Mucha, Sarah (July 15, 2021). “Katherine Clark’s ascent as prime candidate for next Speaker”. Axios. Archived from the original on July 15, 2021. Retrieved July 17, 2021.
- “Caucus Members”. Congressional Progressive Caucus. Archived from the original on January 14, 2021. Retrieved March 29, 2021.
- “BBO names new chief bar counsel”. Massachusetts Lawyer’s Weekly (official website). March 6, 2020. Archived from the original on April 12, 2020. Retrieved March 9, 2020.
- “Assistant Speaker Clark Celebrates Passage of the Equality Act – Press Releases – Congresswoman Katherine Clark”. United States House of Representatives. February 25, 2021. Archived from the original on March 23, 2021. Retrieved February 28, 2021.
- Mucha, Sarah (July 14, 2021). “Katherine Clark’s friend-filled path to speaker”. Axios. Archived from the original on July 15, 2021. Retrieved July 15, 2021.
- Congresswoman Katherine Clark official U.S. House website
- Katherine Clark for Congress
- Katherine Clark at Curlie
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Profile at Vote Smart
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Legislation sponsored at the Library of Congress
- Appearances on C-SPAN
Democratic Steering and Policy Committee