Botwc Firsts

Maxine Waters Is Reclaiming Her Time As The First Woman To Chair House Financial Services Committee

Maxine Waters Is Reclaiming Her Time As The First Woman To Chair House Financial Services Committee

 Photo: Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post 

Amidst the multiple women of color who have been newly sworn into Congress as 2019 kicks off, veteran congresswoman Maxine Waters will take on a new historically significant role. Congresswoman Waters will now serve as the first woman and the first African American Chair of the House Financial Services Committee.

The House Financial Services Committee is responsible for managing the major financial regulators and agencies of the United States. Some of these agencies include the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and the Federal Reserve Bank. Congresswoman Waters has consistently served on the committee since 1995 and was one of its highest ranking members in the previous Congress. Now as the chair of the committee, Waters will set the agenda for the committee in areas that affect economy spending, housing, banking, insurances, and securities.

 

Over the years, her passionate advocacy around financial disparities amongst women and persons of color in this country has earned her the reputation of being a logical and “no nonsense” lawmaker who is not afraid to challenge her fellow government officials nor industry leaders whose policies have a direct impact on the lives of everyday citizens. In her new role, she is anticipated to set new standards and expectations to potentially level the proverbial playing field regarding funds distribution and lending practices to lessen the racial and gender wealth gaps in this country.

Waters has been one of the most prominent voices speaking out against discriminatory practices of major lenders that drastically limits access to affordable housing in communities of color. The lower instances of property ownership in black and brown communities has also been identified as one of the most significant contributors to the ongoing wealth disparities in the United States. 

Congressman Waters has stood as a consistent beacon of hope and progression for historically disenfranchised people in this country, even in the face of death and bomb threats by those in opposition to her.

"We have to keep doing what we're doing in order to make this country right," Waters told the Washington Post. "That's what I intend to do. And as the young people say, 'I ain't scared.'" 

Back to Top