Dennis A. Cardoza (born March 31, 1959) is an American politician who has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 2003, representing the 18th District of California. He defeated his former boss, Congressman Gary Condit, in the March 2002 Democratic Party primary election. Cardoza is a Blue Dog Democrat.
Cardoza was born in Merced, California, of Portuguese ancestry. He grew up in Atwater, California and graduated from Atwater High School. He was educated at the California State University, Stanislaus in Turlock, California then transferred to University of Maryland, College Park. He is a member of Theta Chi Fraternity.
Cardoza served as a city council member in both Merced and Atwater and was a Member of the California State Assembly from 1996 to 2002 before entering the U.S. House of Representatives by winning the seat of Congressman Gary Condit, Cardoza's early mentor.