Martha McSally

Born:March 22, 1966 (age 58)
Career:U.S. Senate, 2019-2021
U.S. House of Representatives, 2015-2019
Education:M.A., John F. Kennedy School of Government and U.S. Air War College

Martha McSally was appointed to the U.S. Senate for Arizona on Jan. 3, 2019, to finish the term of the late Senator John McCain, who passed away on August 25, 2018. McCain's first appointed successor, retired Senator Jon Kyl, served only until the end of that Congress. McSally was the 2020 Republican nominee for the seat, losing in the general election.

McSally was born on March 22, 1966, in Warwick, Rhode Island. She graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in 1988, earned a master's degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard in 1990 and then entered pilot training at Laughlin AFB, Texas. She earned a second master's degree in strategic studies from the U.S. Air War College.

Prior to serving in Congress, McSally served 26 years in the U.S. Air Force, retiring in 2010 as a full colonel. During her 26-year military career, she deployed six times to the Middle East and Afghanistan, flying 325 combat hours and earning a Bronze Star and six air medals. McSally was the first American woman to fly in combat and the first woman to command a USAF fighter squadron.

In 2012, McSally was an unsuccessful candidate in the Republican primary for the special election for Arizona's 8th congressional district vacancy created by the resignation of Gabrielle Giffords. She then won the Republican nomination in the 2012 regular election for the district, which had been renumbered as the 2nd District, losing in the general election. She won election to the U.S. House in 2014.

For information on McSally’s policy subject areas, committee appointments and sponsored/co-sponsored legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, please visit her profile on


Biographical Directory of the United States Congress (n.d.). McSally, Martha (1966-). Retrieved on May 13, 2020, from

McSally, M. (n.d.). Meet Martha McSally. Retrieved on May 13, 2020, from


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