Serving the First Congressional District of Nevada, Congresswoman Dina Titus has built a strong record of achievement as both an educator and a public servant.
As a professor, Dina taught American and Nevada government classes at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas for 34 years, until her retirement in June 2011. A noted non-fiction writer, Dina is the author of “Bombs in the Backyard: Atomic Testing and American Politics” (University of Nevada Press, Revised Edition 2001) and “Battle Born: Federal-State Relations in Nevada During the Twentieth Century” (Kendall-Hunt, 1989). She has also published numerous scholarly articles.
As a result of her publications, Dina is internationally known for her expertise in the history of nuclear power, weaponry and waste and in policies relating to those areas. She is also well versed in the popular lore of “atomic culture.” This unique area of study extends to a wide-ranging personal collection of atomic memorabilia. She appeared in the 2006 PBS documentary “The American Experience: Las Vegas – an Unconventional History” by acclaimed director Steven Ives, where she discussed nuclear issues and Las Vegas history.
In 1988, Dina was elected to represent the people of District Seven in the Nevada State Senate, serving as the Democratic Minority Leader from 1993 to 2008. During her service in the Nevada State Legislature, Dina was a champion for quality education and renewable energy development, and a strong advocate on behalf of Nevada’s children, seniors, and persons with disabilities.
Dina has fought to maintain smaller class sizes in the important early grades and sponsored legislation for full-day kindergarten. She sponsored legislation allowing seniors and other Nevadans to purchase less expensive prescription drugs from Canada and another law requiring pharmacies to offer less expensive generic drugs when available. She proposed successful legislation mandating enhanced penalties for criminals who commit identity theft and won passage of legislation doubling penalties for offenders who commit crimes against disabled persons.
Dina also led efforts to crack down on sexual predators with legislation increasing penalties for sex offenders, requiring lifetime supervision of their conduct, and establishing a state website that allows concerned citizens to identify locations in their neighborhoods where paroled, supervised sex offenders reside.
To protect Nevada families against rising property taxes with the potential to tax them out of their homes, Dina proposed a freeze on property tax valuations that led to the Nevada Legislature capping increases in valuation. She has also been a leading advocate of “smart growth,” proposing a “ring around the valley” in Southern Nevada to better manage growth, and was successful with legislation protecting environmentally sensitive Red Rock Canyon from encroaching development.
Dina has received numerous awards from various state and local organizations, but one of her proudest moments came in 2006 with the dedication of the Dina Titus Estates, an innovative affordable housing complex for disabled Nevadans, in recognition of Dina's tireless advocacy.
In 2008, Dina was elected to represent the Third District of Nevada in the U.S. House of Representatives. During the 111th Congress, Dina served on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, the Education and Labor Committee, and the Homeland Security Committee. She also served as Whip for the Western states and was a member of numerous issue caucuses.
Dina returned to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2012 after being elected to represent the First District of Nevada. She is a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs, where she currently serves as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs (DAMA).
Congresswoman Titus grew up in the small community of Tifton, Georgia, with her parents, Joe and Betty Titus, and her younger sister, Dr. Rho Hudson, who is currently a professor of special education at Nevada State College. Dina is a graduate of the College of William and Mary, holds a Master's degree from the University of Georgia, and earned her Doctorate at Florida State University.
Dina has been married to Professor Thomas C. Wright for over 30 years. Tom, a Latin American Historian, received the prestigious UNLV Distinguished Professor award in 2008. John Wright Hall on campus is named for his father, pioneer professor at UNLV.
Follow Dina on Twitter @repdinatitus.