MJ Hegar

As a young girl, MJ’s dreams of becoming a military pilot were dismissed with claims that “the front is no place for a woman.” Unwilling to back down, MJ became a commissioned officer in the Air Force after graduating from the University of Texas. She was selected for a highly competitive spot in the pilot training program, where she graduated at the top of her class. MJ went on to serve three tours in Afghanistan as a combat search and rescue and medevac pilot.

During a rescue mission in Afghanistan, MJ’s helicopter was destroyed by the Taliban, and she was injured by enemy gunfire. MJ received the Purple Heart for her injuries, and she is one of only a few women to be awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor for her actions saving the lives of her crew and patients.

When her injuries left her unable to fly, she was barred from competing for a ground combat position because she was a woman. MJ knew that the rule was not only unjust, but a detriment to military preparedness — and that changing it was a fight she had to take on.

So, she worked across the aisle and successfully led the charge to overturn the outdated policy and open up hundreds of thousands of jobs for women in the military. During her advocacy, MJ got a firsthand look at how broken Washington is — and it left her with deep concerns about the ever-increasing dysfunction we were leaving for the next generation.

Now MJ is taking on the fight for the Senate, to break the bottleneck that’s blocking any constructive progress in Washington from coming to reality. She’s up against Senator John Cornyn, who has spent nearly two decades in Washington serving the special interests over Texans.