Mark Warner was elected to the U.S. Senate in November 2008, and serves on the Senate Banking, Budget, Commerce and Intelligence committees. After more than four years in the Senate, Senator Warner has established himself as a national leader in efforts to find bipartisan consensus to create balanced solutions to reduce the federal debt and deficit. He also has been a champion for military men and women, their families, and our military veterans. Senator Warner also is a leader in Congress in efforts to promote private-sector innovation and to help our nation's small businesses and start-up companies succeed.
Senator Warner has been a leader in seeking moderate, bipartisan compromises to try and break through Congressional gridlock. He organized the Senate's Gang of Six, which has worked since 2011 to find a bipartisan path towards responsible deficit and debt reduction, and he has reached across the aisle to co-sponsor numerous bills with Republican colleagues.
Senator Warner's business experience has informed his work towards leaner, more efficient government. He was chosen by his colleagues on the Budget Committee to lead a bipartisan task force to eliminate unnecessary program overlap and wasteful duplication within the federal bureaucracy, and he has introduced bills to measure and eliminate waste in federal agencies.
As the senior senator from Virginia, a state with a proud history of military service and a large population of service members, their families, and veterans, Senator Warner has been a strong advocate for the men and women of our armed forces. He has intervened to improve older, dilapidated military housing in Hampton Roads and to combat the use of toxic drywall in military and civilian housing. His efforts also prompted the Veterans Administration to significantly improve its services to female military veterans.
Senator Warner has acted swiftly and decisively to resolve issues in the Commonwealth that demanded his immediate attention. After two Virginia Air National Guard pilots blew-the-whistle on chronic safety concerns with the new F-22 stealth fighter jet, Senator Warner intervened to protect the pilots from reprisals and prompted the Air Force to step-up its investigation into the cause of the F-22 safety issues. He also mobilized several of Virginia's leading technology companies to correct mistakes and mismanagement discovered at the Army's Arlington National Cemetery.
From 2002 to 2006, Senator Warner served as Governor of Virginia, where he worked in a bipartisan way to turn record budget deficits into a surplus. Governor Warner also focused on improving public education and expanding economic opportunity in every region of the state. He recruited 135,000 new jobs to Virginia during his four-year term. When Governor Warner left office in 2006, Virginia was consistently recognized as the nation's "best-managed state," the "best state for business" and the state offering the best educational opportunities to its young people.
Before entering public office, Senator Warner was an early investor in the cellular telephone business. He co-founded the company that became Nextel, and ultimately made early investments in hundreds of start-up technology companies that have created tens-of-thousands of private sector jobs.
Senator Warner, his wife Lisa Collis, and their three daughters live in Alexandria, Virginia.