Tulsi Gabbard has served as the U.S. Representative for Hawaii’s second congressional district since 2013. She was born in American Samoa but moved to Hawaii at age 2. At 21, Gabbard was the youngest state legislator ever elected in the history of Hawaii.
Less than a year after she was elected, Gabbard enlisted in the Hawaii Army National Guard. When her brigade combat team was activated for duty in Iraq, Gabbard didn’t hesitate: she left office to deploy with her unit. She served for eighteen months as a soldier in a medical unit outside of Baghdad. When she returned, she worked with Senator Daniel Akaka to help pass legislature and provide services for a new generation of veterans. She later deployed for a second time, serving as a military police platoon leader in Kuwait. Along with Tammy Duckworth, she’s the first female combat veteran in the U.S. Congress.
She is also the first American Samoan and Hindu to serve as a member of the U.S. Congress. She practices yoga and still makes time to surf in Hawaii.