shown: Virgin Falls, Sparta Tennessee
United States Representative
A native of Swain County and now a resident of Haywood County, Heath Shuler was elected to North Carolina's 11th Congressional District in November 2006. The 11th District is comprised of the 15 westernmost counties in North Carolina: Buncombe, Clay, Cherokee, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, and Yancey.
Prior to launching his Congressional bid Congressman Shuler had been a successful entrepreneur and small business owner. He began a real estate brokerage firm and several other successful real estate companies. Congressman Shuler is also widely known for his success on the football field. As a student-athlete at Swain County High School, he set every passing record in school history while leading the Maroon Devils to three North Carolina state championships and being named North Carolina High School Player of the year.
From Swain County it was a short trip over the Great Smoky Mountains to the University of Tennessee. While at UT Congressman Shuler set numerous passing records, was selected to multiple All-America teams, was named Southeastern Conference Player of the Year, and was named NCAA Male Athlete of the Year. Congressman Shuler went on to play in the National Football League for the Washington Redskins and New Orleans Saints, before an injury ended his career. With his football days behind him, Congressman Shuler returned to the University of Tennessee and finished his degree.
Now in serving in Washington, Congressman Shuler is a loyal member of the fiscally responsible Blue Dog Caucus, which works to end wasteful spending and to balance the budget. Upon entering the 110th Congress he helped lead the charge to restore common-sense PAYGO measures to the budget and install accountability and transparency over "earmarks."
Congressman Shuler is also committed to protecting America's working families. He advocated for raising the minimum wage and ending the unfair trade agreements that have shipped thousands of American jobs overseas. He is currently working to ensure that all trade agreements fair to American workers, and protect the environment, and rights of workers in other countries.
An avid hunter who raises and trains Labrador Retrievers for field trialing, Congressman Shuler is deeply devoted to land conservation, the protection of our National Parks and Forests, and curbing global warming. For the past two years he has led the fight against proposals from the Administration to sell off thousands of acres of National Forest land. Congressman Shuler is also a vocal supporter of investing in sustainable energy to reduce America's dependence on petroleum.
Congressman Shuler married Nikol Davis of Waynesville and they have two children, Navy and Island. The family attends Biltmore Baptist Church. He has served as a charter member and spokesperson for the Friends of the Smokies, a Board Member of the Knoxville Boys and Girls Club and as National Spokesperson for Character Counts, and remains active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.