Nancy Patricia Pelosi (pə-LOH-see; née D'Alesandro; born March 26, 1940) is an American politician who served as the 52nd speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 2007 to 2011 and again from 2019 to 2023. A member of the Democratic Party, she was the first woman elected Speaker and the first woman to lead a major political party in either chamber of Congress, leading the House Democrats from 2003 to 2023. A member of the House since 1987, Pelosi currently represents California's 11th congressional district, which includes most of San Francisco. Pelosi was born and raised in Baltimore, and is the daughter of mayor and congressman Thomas D'Alesandro Jr. She graduated from Trinity College, Washington in 1962 and married businessman Paul Pelosi the next year; the two had met while both were students. They moved to New York City before settling down in San Francisco with their children. Focused on raising her family, Pelosi stepped into politics as a volunteer for the Democratic Party in the 1960s. After years of party work, she was first elected to Congress in a 1987 special election and is now in her 19th term; she is the dean of California's congressional delegation. Pelosi steadily rose through the ranks of the House Democratic Caucus to be elected House minority whip in 2001 and elevated to House minority leader a year later, becoming the first woman to hold each of those positions in either chamber of Congress. In the 2006 midterm elections, Pelosi led the Democrats to a majority in the House for the first time in 12 years and was subsequently elected Speaker, becoming the first woman to hold the office.
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