At a Glance
- Career History:
- Birthday: Dec. 12, 1951
- Hometown: Edgmont, Pennsylvania
- Alma Mater: U.S. Naval Academy, B.S., 1974; Harvard University, MPA, 1980; Harvard University, Ph.D., 1984.
- Spouse: Barbara Clark-Sestak
- Religion: Roman Catholic
- Committees: Armed Services; Education and Labor; Small Business
- DC Office: 1022 Longworth House Office Building, 202-225-2011
- District Office: Media, 610-892-8623
Path to Power
Sestak was born and raised in Delaware County, Pa. Following in the footsteps of his father who served as a Navy captain during World War II, Sestak enrolled at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, where he graduated second in his class.
While he was in the Navy, Sestak rose to the rank of three-star admiral. He served as director for defense policy on the National Security Council during President Clinton's administration. After 9/11, Sestak was selected to serve as the first director of "Deep Blue," the Navy's antiterrorism unit, where he helped develop strategy to fight terrorism.
During the 110th Congress, Sestak voted the same way as his fellow Democrats 96.8 percent of the time. In the 111th Congress, he has voted with his party 98.3 percent of the time.
Sestak ran for Congress arguing that national security begins at home. Sestak argues that economic stability relies on an economic stimulus plan, the stabilization of the housing market, implementation of the Treasury Department's Troubled Asset Relief Program to stabilize financial institutions and providing liquidity to markets through calls for Federal Reserve action.
Becoming the only member of Congress to break with the Democratic establishment and endorse Sestak, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) endorsed Sestak in his primary fight with Specter. Frank is openly gay and signaled his support for the the military man's fight to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."
On matters concerning health care, Sestak worked with Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa.) on 2007 legislation to help hospitals and ambulatory services fight and prevent the occurrence of staph infections. He also worked with Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) on mental- health parity, which would require insurance companies to cover mental-health issues the same way they do physical ailments.