A small business owner since he was a teenager, Senator Begich’s top priority is continuing America’s economic recovery through targeted investments and cutting wasteful federal spending. He is an independent leader in the Senate who works across party lines, and he’s already made an impact as a fierce advocate for Alaska.
This Congress, he secured a place on the Appropriations and Indian Affairs committees and continues his service on the Commerce Committee, chairing the Subcommittee on Oceans, Fisheries and the Coast Guard, the Veterans Affairs and Homeland Security committees. At the beginning of the 113th Congress, he also became chairman of the Homeland Subcommittee on Emergency Management, Intergovernmental Relations and the District of Columbia.
Mark has quickly gained clout in the Senate, rising to 5th in the senate leadership. He has used his leadership position and committees to successfully expand services for Alaska veterans, restart Arctic energy development, fight for small business tax reform and bring back local control under No Child Left Behind.
Anchorage born and raised, Mark’s parents moved to Anchorage in the Alaska Territory to teach in 1957. When Mark was 10 years old, he lost his father, Congressman Nick Begich, when his plane went down over the Gulf of Alaska.
In 2008, Mark was elected to the Senate after serving as Mayor of Anchorage for nearly six years, where he oversaw the biggest building boom in Anchorage in a generation, balanced the city budget while earning top grades from bond rating agencies, and strengthened relations with Alaska Natives and other minority groups. As a former Mayor, he understands the need to get things done and strives to bring common sense solutions to Washington.
Senator Begich is married to Deborah Bonito, a successful Anchorage businesswoman who owns several small retail stores in Anchorage. Together, they have a son, Jacob.