U.S. congressional pages

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Pages are American high school students that serve as messengers in U.S. Congress. All pages must be high school juniors and at least sixteen years old at the start of the program. [1]

Contents

History

The first page to serve in Congress was appointed in 1829 by Senator Daniel Webster. In 1842, the House of Representatives adopted the custom and appointed its first page. Since that time, the program has run continuously in both chambers. Pages were strictly male until 1971, when the first female page was appointed. [2]

Duties

Pages Function primarily as messengers, shuttling documents between the House and Senate, members' offices, and the Library of Congress. They also distribute documents such as the Congressional Record and daily agendas, and provide general assistance to members of Congress. Pages also have an assortment of jobs that are not listed here. [3]

House Pages

As of late 2006, seventy-two pages served in the U.S. House of Representatives. Forty-eight pages were appointed by members of the majority party, while 24 were appointed by members of the minority. Pages serve terms of duty lasting one academic semester or summer term. The program is administered by the Office of the Clerk and overseen by the House Page Board.[4]

House Page Board members

  • Rep. Dale Kildee (D-Mich.), Chairman
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  • Hon. Lorraine C. Miller, Clerk of the House
  • Wilson Livingood, House Sergeant-at-Arms [5][6]

Changes to the Page Board

The House voted unanimously (416-0) to change the makeup of the Page Board on January 19, 2007 in the wake of the Mark Foley page scandal. The new board would include a second member of the minority party, a parent of a current or former page, and a former page. [7]

Living and educational arrangements

House pages are paid a salary that equates to an annual salary of $18,817. They are housed in the supervised House Page Dormitory located near the Capitol. Inclusive in their room and board are five breakfasts and seven dinners each week. [8]

Pages serving during during the school year are educated at the House Page School in the Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress. They attend classes five days a week, completing their lessons before the start of the day's congressional session.[9]

Application process

Current House rules state that pages must be nominated by the representative of their home district. Their application will then be considered, with academic accomplishment being the most heavily weighted variable. Applicants will then be interviewed by a panel consisting of the Clerk of the House, page school and dormitory staff, and legislative staff before final decisions are made. [10]

Contact information

Questions about the House page program should be be directed to:

Ms. Ellen McNamara
Office of the Clerk, H-154, US Capitol
Washington, DC 20515
Telephone: (202) 225-7000

Senate Pages

There are 30 Senate pages: 18 selected by the majority party, 12 selected by the minority party. They serve for one academic semester of summer term The program is supervised by the Senate Sergeant at Arms, Bill Pickle. [11]

Living and educational arrangements

Senate pages are paid a salary that equates to an annual salary of $20,491. While participating in the program, pages are housed in the Daniel Webster Senate Page Residence near the Hart Senate Office Building. Their room and board includes seven breakfasts and dinners each week. [12]

The pages attend class at the Senate Page School located in Webster Hall five days a week before the Senate convenes. [13]

Application process

Individual Senators nominate pages based on their own, slightly differing criteria. Students interested in becoming a Senate page should refer to their Senators' websites. [14]

Contact information

Questions about the Senate page program should be directed to:

Ms. Elizabeth Roach, Director
United States Senate Page Program
Webster Hall
Washington, DC 20510-7248
Telephone: (202) 228-1291

Questions about the Senate Page School should be directed to:

Mrs. Kathryn Weeden, Principal
United States Page School
Washington, DC 20510-7248
Telephone: (202) 224-3926

Articles and Resources

Resources

United States House Page Association of America (USHPAA) http://ushpaa.com/ U.S. House Page Alumni Association http://www.pagealumni.us/boards/index.php Old House Alumni Page Site http://www.pagealumni.us/congpageassoc/

Articles

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