Freshman Rep. Jen Kiggans (R-Va.), a Navy veteran, announced Wednesday she has been selected to serve on the House Armed Services Committee (HASC). 

Kiggans represents Virginia’s 2nd district seat, which has a heavy shipbuilding contingent and is in close proximity to Naval Station Norfolk.

Rep. Jen Kiggans (R-Va.)

“As a former Navy Helicopter Pilot, wife of a former Navy F/A-18 Pilot, and mother to children who serve, I am well aware of the challenges that members of our military and their families face, as well as what is required to overcome them.  I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to empower our service members to succeed, restore American strength, bolster our national security, care for our military families, and ensure that my district has the tools to fulfill the critical role it plays in maintaining our nation’s strong defense force,” Kiggans said in a statement on Wednesday,

Kiggans’ seat was previously held by Democrat Elaine Luria, who was a strong proponent of increased defense spending and advocated for growing the size of the Naval fleet (Defense Daily, Nov. 9). 

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.), the new HASC chair, noted the House Republican Conference must now ratify the GOP Steering Committee’s recommendation to place Kiggans, and other members, on the panel.

“I am thrilled that the Steering Committee has recommended Congresswoman Kiggans to serve on the House Armed Services Committee,” Rogers said in a statement. “Jen bravely served her nation as a helicopter pilot in the U.S. Navy. Today, she proudly represents Virginia’s Second Congressional District which plays a crucial role in supporting our naval fleet. Jen will bring invaluable experience and insight to our committee.”

Kiggans, who was a helicopter pilot in the Navy, noted her district is also home to Naval Air Station Oceana “and a large number of the Servicemembers, shipbuilders, and their families who keep the world’s strongest Naval Force running.”