At a Glance
- Current Job: U.S. Representative (since
- Career History: Executive, H&H Foods; State Board of Education, Texas (1974-1984); Board of Education, Mercedes School (1972-1974); Board of Regents, South Texas Community College (1993-1996)
- Birthday: August 20, 1940
- Hometown: Mercedes, Texas
- Alma Mater: University of Texas-Austin, BBA (1962); University of Texas Pan American-Edinburg, MBA (1980)
- Spouse: Martha Lopez
- Religion: Catholic
- Committees: Education and the Workforce ; Financial Services
- DC Office: 2463 Rayburn House Office Building, 202-225-2531
- State/District Office: Beeville, 361-358-8400; Edinburg, 956-682-5545
- Web site
Path To Power
Born in 1940 the eighth of 11 children raised in Hidalgo County on the Texas-Mexico border, Hinojosa spent his early years attending schools where nearly all students were Mexican-Americans and everyone spoke Spanish. At age 9, Hinojosa moved with his family to another part of the county, where more families spoke English and his father bought a meatpacking plant.
A graduate of the University of Texas, where he earned two business degrees, Hinojosa would eventually take over H&H Foods, the family business.
During the 111th Congress, Hinojosa voted with the majority of his party 99 percent of the time. During the 112th Congress under a Republican-led House, Hinojosa bucked the majority of his party and voted for the extension of of the USA Patriot Act as well as the 2011 budget compromise.
The Texas Democrat has pushed for legislation that would fund water-conservation projects along the border region.
In 2003, Hinojosa co-founded the Rural Housing Caucus-which he now chairs-to bring national attention to the scarcity of housing in rural areas. He and Rep. Judy Biggert (R-Ill.) co-founded the House Financial Literacy and Economic Education Caucus, which in 2011 numbered 87 members from both sides of the aisle.
Hinojosa is the second-ranked member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, which is helmed by fellow Texan Rep. Charlie Gonzalez (D). Other Texas Democrats in the influential group include Reps. Silvestre Reyes and Henry Cuellar. Like Hinojosa, both have border districts.