Kelly Ayotte represented New Hampshire in the United States Senate from 2011-2016, where she served as Chair and Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Readiness and Management Support Subcommittee. She also chaired the Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation Operations and served on the Budget, Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Small Business and Entrepreneurship, and Aging Committees. Senator Ayotte served as the “Sherpa” for Justice Neil Gorsuch, leading the effort to secure his confirmation to the United States Supreme Court.
From 2004-2009, Senator Ayotte served as New Hampshire’s first female Attorney General having been appointed to that position by Republican Governor Craig Benson and reappointed twice by Democratic Governor John Lynch. Prior to that, she served as the Deputy Attorney General, Chief of the Homicide Prosecution Unit and as Legal Counsel to Governor Craig Benson. She began her career as a law clerk to the New Hampshire Supreme Court and as an associate at the McLane Middleton law firm.
Senator Ayotte serves on the boards of Caterpillar, News Corp, Boston Properties, Bloom Energy, Blink Health and BAE Systems and the advisory boards of Microsoft, Chubb Insurance, and Cirtronics. She is a Senior Advisor for Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions. She also serves on the non-profit boards of the One Campaign, the International Republican Institute, the McCain Institute, and NH Veteran’s Count.
Senator Ayotte co-chairs the Commission on Health Security at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and is member of the Taskforce on Extremism in Fragile States at the United States Institute of Peace. She is a member of the Aspen Institute’s Homeland Security and Economic Strategy Groups.
Senator Ayotte graduated with honors in 1990 from the Pennsylvania State University and earned a Juris Doctor degree in 1993 from the Villanova University School of Law. She is a native of New Hampshire and lives in Nashua with her husband, Joe, a retired Air Force combat pilot, and their two children Katherine and Jacob.