Michael M. Honda (born June 27, 1941) is an American Democratic politician. He currently serves as Congressman for California's Fifteenth Congressional District, which encompasses Silicon Valley. (map)
A Japanese American, he was born in Walnut Grove, California and spent his early childhood in an internment camp in Colorado. His family became strawberry sharecroppers in Blossom Valley in San Jose after their return in 1953.
He graduated from San Jose High Academy and then San Jose State University in 1968 with a bachelor's degree in biological sciences and Spanish and earned a master's degree in 1974. From 1965 to 1967 he served in the United States Peace Corps, working in El Salvador.
A science teacher, he served as the principal at two public schools. In 1971, Honda was appointed by San Jose Mayor Norman Mineta to San Jose's Planning Commission, and won election to the San Jose Unified School Board in 1981. He was a member of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors (1990) and the California State Assembly (1996-2001).
Honda was elected to the U.S. House as a Democrat in 2000, succeeding Republican Tom Campbell. As of 2003, he is a member of the Science Committee and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and serves as Regional Whip for Northern California and Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.
On February 12, 2005, he was elected a vice chair of the Democratic National Committee under the chairmanship of Howard Dean. His term is expected to last until 2009.