Paradigm Award Recipients
(R) United States House of Representatives
9th Congressional District of Florida 1983 – 2007
It’s not surprising that National Journal’s Almanac of American Politics has called Rep. Mike Bilirakis one of the most “legislatively productive” members of Congress. He was first elected to Congress as Republican Congressman from Tarpon Springs in Florida’s Ninth District on Nov. 2, 1982, and has been reelected to each succeeding Congress. His committee assignments in the 109th Congress include membership on the Energy and Commerce Committee, where he serves as Vice-Chairman of the full Committee and a member of both the Health, Telecommunications and the Internet, and Energy and Air Quality Subcommittees. Mike is also the Vice-Chairman of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee and Chairman of the Oversight Subcommittee.
For 10 years, Mike served as the Chairman of the Health Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over much of the health-related legislation introduced in the House of Representatives. As Subcommittee Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the full Committee, Mike was a vocal advocate for medical research and a national leader on health reform. He was also instrumental in the passage of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003.
Mike’s strong values will continue to guide him as he works to improve the health and quality of life of all Americans. As Vice-Chairman of the full Energy and Commerce Committee, Mike continued to play a major role in crafting national health policy. In recognition of his efforts on behalf of veterans, Mike has received many national awards, including the VFW’s Congressional Award for his outstanding service to the Nation’s veterans.
In the past, Mike has served as Chairman of the Task Force on the Elderly and has been a leader in the fight against infant mortality. He has also held memberships on the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, the Immigration Reform Caucus and the Congressional Task Force on POW/MIAs. He co-founded the Military Veterans Caucus and the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues in order to draw attention to matters of great importance to our community such as: the rights of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the thirty-year occupation of Cyprus by Turkish troops, and the usurpation of the name “Macedonia” by a former Yugoslav Republic.
Michael Bilirakis retired in 2007 and was succeeded by his son, Gus Bilirakis.
“Let us think of education as the means of developing our greatest abilities, because in each of us there is a private hope and dream which, fulfilled, can be translated into benefit for everyone and greater strength for our nation.”
JOHN F. KENNEDY