Prior to becoming the first Republican woman to represent Georgia in the United States Congress, Representative Karen Handel held policy and communications positions with several major corporations and nonprofit organizations. She also served in the Bush-Quayle White House, as deputy chief of staff to Governor Sonny Perdue, and as the CEO of one of Georgia’s largest chambers of commerce.
As Chairman of the Fulton County Board of Commissioners, Karen quickly distinguished herself as a problem-solver and smart negotiator -- plugging a $100 million budget deficit without raising taxes, delivering the County’s first truly balanced budget, and achieving significant ethics reforms.
One of just five women ever to be elected to statewide office in Georgia, Karen was Georgia’s 26th Secretary of State, and its first Republican Secretary of State. In this role, Karen successfully implemented various elections integrity reforms, including photo ID, and executed a much-needed, agency-wide modernization initiative, while cutting the department’s budget by nearly 20%.
In Congress, Karen serves on the House Judiciary Committee and on the Education and the Workforce Committee.
For the past 25 years, Karen and her husband Steve have lived in the 6th District, which stretches from Marietta to Brookhaven, and from Milton to Sandy Springs.