Shirley Neil Pettis

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Shirley Neil Pettis
Shirley Neil Pettis.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 37th district
In office
April 29, 1975 – January 3, 1979
Preceded by Jerry Pettis
Succeeded by Jerry Lewis
Personal details
Born (1924-07-12) July 12, 1924 (age 92)
Mountain View, California
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Jerry Pettis
Residence Rancho Mirage, California
Alma mater Andrews University
UC Berkeley
Religion Seventh-day Adventist

Shirley Neil Pettis (born July 12, 1924) was a U.S. Representative from California, wife of her predecessor, Jerry Pettis.


Early Life and career[edit]

Born Shirley Neil McCumber on July 12, 1924 in Mountain View, California, Pettis attended elementary schools in Berkeley, California from 1931 to 1932, and Berrien Springs, Michigan from 1933 to 1937. She graduated from Andrews University Academy in 1942. She attended Andrews University from 1942 to 1943, and the University of California, Berkeley from 1944 to 1945. She was a Co-founder and manager of Audio-Digest Foundation from 1950 to 1953, and a newspaper columnist for the Sun-Telegram, San Bernardino, California, from 1967 to 1970. Pettis served as vice president of the Republican Congressional Wives Club, 1975.

Political career[edit]

Pettis was elected as a Republican to the Ninety-fourth Congress, by special election, to fill the vacancy caused by the death of her husband, United States Representative Jerry Pettis. She won his seat by special election and she was subsequently reelected to the Ninety-fifth Congress (April 29, 1975-January 3, 1979). She was not a candidate for reelection to the Ninety-sixth Congress in 1978. While a Member of Congress she served first on the House Interior Committee and then the House Foreign Affairs Committee. She secured passage of her late husband's California Desert Protection Act and the Joshua Tree Wilderness Act legislation. She served as vice president, Women's Research and Education Institute, Washington, D.C. from 1980 to 1981. She served as member of the Arms Control and Disarmament Commission from 1981 to 1983, and the Commission on Presidential Scholars from 1990 to 1992. She served as member of the board of directors, Kemper National Insurance Companies from 1979 to 1997.


United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Jerry Lyle Pettis
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 37th congressional district

Succeeded by
Jerry Lewis

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.