Mary Bono (R-CA)
Mary Bono former Congressman California District 45
Mary Bono Mack** was a member of the House of Representatives from January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2013
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Campaign links: see bottom of page
Know as Mary Bono Mack during her marriage to Connie Mack
*** Mary Bono and Connie Mack divorced in 2013
Mary Bono Mack 2012 Congressional Candidate California District 36. She was the incumbent in the 2002 -2010 California District 45 and ran for reelection in the 2012 – 2020 California District 36. She lost in the November election to Raul Ruiz.
Biography of Mary Bono Mack from House.gov 
In 1998, Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack was first elected to serve the people of California’s 45th District through a special election held to fill the seat left vacant by her late husband, The Honorable Sonny Bono. Since then, Bono Mack has established herself as a leader on such issues as clean, alternative energy, protecting the environment, improving health care, and protecting consumers.
As a senior Member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, the Congresswoman was selected to serve as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade (previously known as Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection) for the 112th Congress. The selection as Chairman of the Subcommittee is a historic occasion for the U.S. House of Representatives because the California Congresswoman has become one of the first women in history to hold a gavel on the powerful Committee, one of the oldest standing committees in the House dating back to 1795.
As Chairman, Bono Mack will be focused on job creation and making “Made in America” matter again. With the Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade Subcommittee having jurisdiction over interstate and foreign commerce, Bono Mack is committed to reinvesting in America.
Perhaps one of her most significant legislative achievements, Bono Mack succeeded in passing legislation that established the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto National Mountains Monument in the Palm Springs region. Additionally, Bono Mack successfully moved legislation to compensate the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian Tribe for land lost in 1908. The agreement settled the longest-ever ongoing litigation in the Ninth Circuit Court of California.
Bono Mack has also passed landmark legislation that calls for country-of-origin labeling for fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as several energy-saving bills to reward companies for utilizing clean burning fuel technologies and increase the energy-efficiency of federal buildings. The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed Bono Mack’s Protect Yourself Against Cyber Trespass Act (SPY Act), which would protect an individual’s personal information on the Web. Also, Bono Mack has sponsored legislation that provides funding for obesity studies and improved nutrition programs nationwide, autism research, and Federal funding under the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Act.
Bono Mack has repeatedly secured millions of dollars for transportation and environmental improvement projects in the 45th District, and has been at the forefront of working to curb the bark beetle infestation problem in the San Bernardino forest areas. Bono Mack has also been a key voice in Congress on finding a solution to restore the endangered Salton Sea.California’s 45th Congressional District is located in southeastern California’s Coachella Valley region and Inland Empire. Encompassing a diverse geography, the 45th District includes deserts, mountains and agricultural regions, as well as the Colorado River and the Salton Sea.
California’s 45th Congressional District is located in southeastern California’s Coachella Valley region and Inland Empire. Encompassing a diverse geography, the 45th District includes deserts, mountains and agricultural regions, as well as the Colorado River and the Salton Sea.
Within the Energy and Commerce Committee, Bono Mack sits on the following three subcommittees: Chairman of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade; Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, and the Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy. In addition, Bono Mack serves as co-chair of the Congressional Salton Sea Task Force and as vice-chair of the Entertainment Task Force. Bono Mack is also the founder and co-chair of the Recording Arts and Sciences Caucus, and founding co-chair of the Intellectual Property Promotion and Piracy Prevention Caucus and the America Supports You Caucus, which was established to rally support for men and women in the armed services and their families.
Bono Mack has been recognized for her leadership and efforts to improve our nation’s health care, preserve the environment, strengthen the economy, protect consumers, and expand alternative energy. Based on her consistent voting record on these and other issues, Bono Mack has received numerous awards from major organizations such as: Americans for Tax Reform, National Federation of Independent Businesses, the National Association of Manufacturers, and also from Sunline Transit Agency for her support of alternative fuel technologies.
Bono Mack has been the subject of numerous profiles for a wide array of publications and television shows, including: CNN’s Larry King Live, NBC’s The Today Show, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, USA Today, PEOPLE, Capital Style, ELLE Magazine, Entertainment Tonight, Esquire, Roll Call, GEORGE Magazine, Good Housekeeping, HELLO Magazine, Ladies’ Home Journal, and PBS. In 1998 Bono Mack was named one of the Most Fascinating Women of 1998 by Ladies’ Home Journal magazine in conjunction with CBS Television. She was also selected by the former GEORGE Magazine as one of the 20 most fascinating women in politics. Bono Mack was named by Golf Digest in 2008 as one of the “50 Most Powerful Women” golfers.
Bono Mack is a 1984 graduate of the University of Southern California. Mary later wed Sonny Bono, and together they had two children, Chesare Elan and Chianna Marie.
Mary is the daughter of the late Clay Whitaker, a physician, and the late Karen Whitaker, a chemist, and was raised in South Pasadena, California. As a youth Mary pursued her first love, gymnastics. With her family’s support, Mary became an accomplished gymnast, and her dedication to physical fitness continues to this day.
Mary Bono Mack is married to U.S. Congressman Connie Mack. She is also the proud mother of Chianna and Chesare, and her two stepchildren, Addison and Connie. In addition to spending time with her family, Mary enjoys a wide range of interests including music and outdoor activities such as hiking and camping.
Biography of Mary Bono Mack from the Mary Bono Mack Committee
Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack proudly represents California’s 45th Congressional District. First elected on April 7, 1998, to fill the seat previously held by her late husband, the Honorable Sonny Bono, M.C., Bono Mack is California’s only Republican woman in Washington.
- Assigned to the powerful Committee on Energy and Commerce, Bono Mack serves on the:
- Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection
- Energy and Environment Subcommittee
- Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet
- Chair of the Congressional Salton Sea Task Force and
- Co-Chair of the Entertainment Task Force, and Travel and Tourism Task Force
- Founder and Co-Chair of the Recording Arts and Sciences Congressional Caucus
- Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Property Promotion and Piracy Prevention
Mary was born on October 24, 1961, in Cleveland, Ohio to Clay and Karen Whitaker. In 1963, her family moved to South Pasadena, California where she was raised with her two older brothers, David and Stephen, and an older sister, Katherine. As a youth, Mary pursued her first love, gymnastics. With her family’s support, Mary became an accomplished gymnast while training with the team Gymnastics Olympica.
In 1984, Mary graduated from the University of Southern California, with a degree in Art History. While celebrating her graduation from USC at BONO restaurant, Mary met the restaurant’s owner and her future husband, Sonny Bono. Their relationship blossomed, and in February of 1986, Mary Whitaker married Sonny Bono in Palm Springs, California.
Her husband, Sonny Bono, was elected Mayor of Palm Springs in 1988. Mary served as first lady of the City of Palm Springs from 1988 to 1992, participating in a wide range of community charities and service organizations in the Inland Empire. Mary served on the board of the Palm Springs International Film Festival and played a leadership role in support of the D.A.R.E. program, Olive Crest Home for Abused Children, Tiempos de Los Ninos and many other local causes. In 1993, the San Gorgonio Chapter of the Girl Scouts of America named Mary Woman of the Year for her assistance to victims of a tragic Girl Scout bus crash in Palm Springs.
After the tragic death of her late husband, the Honorable Sonny Bono, Mary Bono Mack was elected with 67% of the vote to represent California’s 45th Congressional District in Washington, DC. Since coming to Washington in 1998, Congresswoman Bono Mack has proven her ability to be a consensus-builder in Congress. In 2000, Congresswoman Bono Mack succeeded in passing legislation establishing the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument in the Palm Springs region with support from diverse interests including environmentalists and developers. The Congresswoman is a strong advocate of returning authority to local government, particularly in public education. The Congresswoman opposes the existing federal tax structure; supports tax relief and advocates for a reduction in federal bureaucracy. She believes that the responsibility of the federal government is to maintain a strong national defense and state-of-the-art armed services.
Mary Bono Mack is married to U.S. Congressman Connie Mack. She is the proud mother of Chesare and Chianna and her two stepchildren Addison and Connie. Congresswoman Bono Mack resides in Palm Springs, CA.
- Legislator of the Year – The Association for Addiction Professionals (2010)
- Guardian of Senior’s Rights (2010) – 60 Plus Association
- NAM Award for Manufacturing Legislative Excellence (2010)
- “Defender of Children” – First Focus Campaign for Children (2010)
- “Guardian of Small Business Award” – The National Federation of Independent Business (2000)
- “Hero of the Taxpayer Award” – Americans for Tax Reform (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002)
- “Friend of the Farm Bureau” – The American Farm Bureau Federation (2002)
- “Friend of the Shareholder Award” – American Shareholders Association (ASA) (2006)
- “Transportation Woman of the Year” -Inland Empire Chapter of Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) (2006)
- “Legislator of the Year” – International Hispanic Awards Gala (2007)
- “Spirit Enterprise” – The United State Chamber of Commerce (2007)
- “Golden Triangle Award” -National Farmers Union (NFU) (2008)
- “Guardian Award” – Partnership for a Drug -Free America (2008)
- “Congressional Honors” – The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) (2008)
- “Spirit of Enterprise” – U.S. Chamber of Commerce (2008)
- “Legislator of the Year Award” – National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare (2009)
- “Legislator of the Year” – Mental Health America (2010)
- Named as one of the most Fascinating Women of 1998 by Ladies Home Journal
- Selected by GEORGE Magazine as one of the 20 most fascinating women in politics (1999).
- Recognized as one of the “50 Most Powerful Women” golfers by Golf Digest (2008).
- Featured in a wide array of publications, domestically and abroad, including: GEORGE, The New York Times Magazine, Good Housekeeping, Esquire, ELLE Magazine, PEOPLE, Capital Style, HELLO Magazine, The Washington Post, and USA Today.
California’s 45th Congressional District
The 45th congressional district is located in southeastern California, in a region known as the “Inland Empire.” The region reflects the state as a whole; with deserts, mountains, agricultural and pastoral open-space, the Colorado River, and a large inland sea (the Salton Sea). Major industries include tourism and agriculture, as well as a diversity of professional and light manufacturing centers. The majority of the population resides in the Moreno Valley, the Hemet/San Jacinto Valley, the Coachella Valley, and Murrieta.
The district includes the communities of Anza, Blythe, Cathedral City, Coachella, Hemet, Idyllwild, Indian Wells, Indio, La Quinta, Menifee, Mecca, Moreno Valley, Murrieta, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, Thermal, portions of Temecula, and other unincorporated areas of Riverside County.
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Past Campaign/Office Links:
2012 House links: Mary Bono Mack (R-CA-45)i
2012 Campaign links: Mary Bono Mack (R-CA-36)i