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Jen Ramos is a lifelong hellraiser, born and raised in South Texas. Raised by Thelma Reyes of Laredo, Texas, and a strong matriarchal household composed of her Tia Lisa, Grandmother, Margarita, and Tia Rita, Jen was curious and determined from the get-go.
In the early years of Jen’s life, Thelma worked as a cosmetologist and other jobs while attending classes at Laredo Community College, often bringing Jen to class with her, going to work-study shifts at the campus library or taking turns working on English homework (Thelma’s least favorite subject). She then went on to become a Licensed Vocational Nurse. Jen grew up in a house full of love but always knew things were different. Being the child of a single parent, she learned very early on what it was like to fall through the cracks of the child support system and learned the identity of then-Attorney General, Greg Abbott.
IT ALL STARTED WITH A WHY?
In 2000, Jen learned about the Electoral College and upon learning about Al Gore, discovered she was a Democrat at 8 years old. Naturally, she had many questions about what that meant but also she wanted to know “Why?” Why our community looked the way it did. Why it wasn’t safe to play by yourself outside. Why her mom didn’t vote. Why no one talked about voting. These were all questions her mom couldn’t answer aside from “That’s the way it is.” That was when Jen became intrigued- and involved.
In 2011, Jen watched a Texas Tribune Livestream from her kitchen- one that featured State Senator Wendy Davis and the filibuster heard around the world. That moment was when Jen realized that she needed to get more involved in the Democratic Party.
In 2012, Jen was selected to serve as a delegate from Webb County to the Texas Democratic Convention, the youngest delegate from her county. She returned and joined forces with Robert Tellez and Arnoldo Alonzo to found the TAMIU College Democrats her first year on campus and became heavily involved in the Wendy Davis for Governor campaign.
Though unsuccessful in 2012, Jen continued to organize as an activist in south Texas. Through personal trials and tribulations, Jen made the decision to move to Austin, Texas in 2015, as a full-time server and bartender.
Upon moving to Austin, Jen reestablished the Travis County Youth Caucus and became a member of the Austin Young Democrats. She became the lead organizer for the Brad Urrutia for the 450th District Court campaign. After two subsequent wins in the 2016 Midterm cycle, Jen became the youngest Campaign Manager in the 2016 General Election for Council Member (now Mayor Pro Tempore) Delia Garza, where they won the race with 66% of the vote and 100% of precincts in the district. She was elected as a DNC National Delegate in 2016 and appointed as Deputy Communications Director for the Texas Young Democrats by President Celia Morgan.
In 2017, Jen Ramos was promoted to Communications Director of TYD and unanimously elected Texas National Committeewoman for the Young Democrats of America. In her role as Communications Director, the Texas Young Democrats have moved to an intersectional in-house content creation program which has lead to 25,000 Facebook likes and over 11,500 Twitter followers and a focus on intersectional outreach, including bilingual press releases and a trilingual Voters Guide by the Texas Young Democrats. She has been interviewed by NPR, published by Teen Vogue, and quoted in various publications.
As National Committeewoman, Jen has actively spoken out in favor of racial equity and adequate representation within the Young Democrats of America organization.
In 2018, Jen was elected as the State Democratic Executive Committeewoman of Senate District 21, the district she was born and raised in and one of 12 representatives under 35 in the state. In her role, Jen has advocated and passed resolutions in support of lowering the voting age to 17 and a paid internship program for the Texas Democratic Party by 2020. Aside from her current roles in Democratic leadership, Jen became the first person of color elected to serve as President of the Austin Young Democrats.