mourning the passing of a great bay area leader

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The Bay Area, California and the nation lost a great leader this week with the passing of former Rep. Ellen Tauscher, who represented a large swath of the East Bay over seven terms in Congress. The self-styled Democratic centrist was a champion of investing to improve transportation and other key infrastructure. She served on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and helped secure millions of dollars in funding for Bay Area transportation projects. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, whose re-election campaigns Tauscher co-chaired in 1992 and 1994, called her “brilliant, gracious and generous,” and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, remembered Tauscher as an “extraordinary force for progress whose leadership will continue to inspire generations of American leaders.”

Tauscher later served as Under Secretary of State in the Obama Administration, where she successfully negotiated the new START agreement with Russia to limit nuclear warheads. After leaving the Obama administration, she served as a regent of the University of California. “Ellen was a force to be reckoned with from the time she was a young girl growing up in Harrison, N.J.,” her family said in a statement. “She succeeded at everything she did and made her mark wherever she went. She was the strongest, bravest person we have ever known.”

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