|About Congressman Jo Bonner|
(Click here for short biography for introductions)
Congressman Jo Bonner, Biography
Jo Bonner was first elected to Congress by the people of Alabama's First District in 2002 and was re-elected in 2012 to a sixth term representing the state's fast-growing Gulf Coast region.
On the House Appropriations Committee, Bonner serves on the Commerce, Justice and Science subcommittee; the Defense subcommittee; and, the Financial Services subcommittee.
After only three terms in office, Bonner was selected by the House Republican Leadership to the position of Ranking Republican of the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, more commonly known as the Ethics Committee. His oversight over matters relating to the Code of Official Conduct of the House has recently placed him in the national spotlight. For the 112th Congress ending in January 2013, Congressman Bonner was named Chairman of the House Ethics Committee.
Additionally, Bonner has served as an assistant on the Republican Whip Team, affording him an opportunity to sit at the House Republican leadership table since he was a freshman back in 2003.
A hallmark of Jo Bonner's service has been a constituent-first approach, as evidenced by a staff that continues to give nothing short of 110 percent effort. In fact, Mobile's Press-Register noted, "the Mobile Republican has earned a reputation as a tireless and effective advocate for his constituents in southwest Alabama."
His record of public service earned him an honorary doctorate from the University of South Alabama in 2012.
During the past ten years, Bonner, in coordination with local and state leaders, has been proactive in helping to successfully attract new industries to the First District, instilling growth and economic diversification as we move further into the 21st century. He has worked aggressively alongside the Governor's office in recruiting several significant economic projects to the state – projects that will continue to fuel the economic engine of Alabama for generations to come. For his efforts in support of regional economic development, Jo Bonner was presented the "2012 Governor Bob Riley 'Building a Better Alabama' Award" by the Business Council of Alabama.
In 2012, Airbus announced the location of its first North American aircraft assembly plant in Mobile. The new facility will create 1,000 direct jobs, 2,500 construction jobs and generate up to 4,000 supplier jobs. In 2007, one of the largest private industrial development projects in the United States – ThyssenKrupp's $4.8 billion steel plant – was announced for Alabama's First District. The company's grand opening was celebrated on December 10, 2010, with more than 2,700 new jobs being created when it is at full employment.
A Native of South Alabama
Born in Selma and reared in the town of Camden, in rural Wilcox County, Jo Bonner grew up in a family where public service was looked upon as an obligation, not an option.
His father, the late Judge Josiah Robins Bonner, led Wilcox County during the tense 1960s and early 1970s. Other relatives, including his grandmother and great-uncle, served with distinction in both local and state government. His mother, an Army nurse during World War II, was often seen volunteering at local blood drives.
A congressional staffer for 18 years, Bonner served as both press secretary and chief of staff to his predecessor, former Congressman Sonny Callahan. In 1997, he and his family moved back to southwest Alabama where he became one of the few congressional chiefs of staff to reside in the district.
Upon returning home, Bonner became active in the life of Mobile and southwest Alabama. Today, he is a member of the Rotary Club of Mobile, the Mobile Lions Club, Mobile United and the Touchdown Club.
Additionally, he serves as a member of the University of Mobile's President's Advisory Council, as well as the advisory board for the Salvation Army.
He has also served as a member of the board of directors for the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, Leadership Mobile and the Mobile Chapter of The University of Alabama Alumni Association, as well as on the board of community advisers for the Junior League of Mobile.
In 2000, the College of Communications at the University of Alabama honored him as their Outstanding Alumnus in Public Relations. He was a member of Leadership Mobile, Class of 2000, where his classmates elected him co-president.
Jo Bonner is married to the former Janée Lambert of Mobile. They are parents of a daughter, Jennifer Lee, age 17, and a son, Josiah Robins, III, age 14.
The Bonners make their home in Mobile and are members of St. Paul's Episcopal Church.