Facts about John Conyers
John Conyers Biography
John Conyers, Jr. was a long-serving United States Congressman from the 13th District of Michigan, an area that includes metropolitan Detroit. He resigned in December of 2017 after being accused of sexual misconduct.
Born during the Herbert Hoover administration, John Conyers grew up in Detroit and served in the U.S. Army from 1950-54, during the Korean War. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Wayne State University in 1957, and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the same school in 1958.
Conyers went to work for Congressman John Dingell, became active in the local Civil Rights movement, and in 1964 was elected to Congress, taking his seat in 1965. There he remained for the next 52 years, being reelected 25 times. A Democrat, he was known as a staunch liberal and unwavering supporter of African American civil rights.
By 2017, John Conyers had become the longest-serving member of Congress. Late that year, news reports revealed that Conyers had paid $27,000 in public funds to settle a 2015 sexual harassment claim from a former employee. A second woman came forward shortly after the report to say that she had also been mistreated by Conyers.
Conyers denied that the stories of sexual misconduct were true, but resigned his post on the House Judiciary Committee in the midst of a congressional investigation into charges against him. A few days later, on December 5th, he announced that he would be leaving Congress entirely, saying “I am retiring today.” He also endorsed his son, John Conyers III, in the special election that would replace him.
John Conyers, Jr.’s wife is Monica Conyers, a former Detroit city council member who served 27 months (out of 37 sentenced) in a federal prison for bribery (2010-12). Monica (who was born the same year Conyers was first elected to the U.S. Congress) filed for divorce in 2015, but the couple reconciled less than a year later and renewed their vows in 2016.