LGBTQIA+ History on Hennepin

Andrea Jenkins

Andrea Jenkins in a light brown leather jacket with arms crossed in front of a large picture window.

Andrea Jenkins, Minneapolis City Council President. Circa 2022. Photo courtesy of Brooke Ross.

Andrea Jenkins made history in 2017 as the first African American openly trans woman to be elected to office in the United States. Now serving as Council President, Andrea is also a writer, performance artist, poet and transgender activist. Andrea moved to Minnesota to attend the University of Minnesota in 1979. Andrea worked as a Vocational Counselor for the Hennepin County government for a decade. Andrea worked as a staff member on the Minneapolis City Council for 12 years before beginning work as curator of the Transgender Oral History Project at the University of Minnesota’s Jean-Nickolaus Tretter Collection in Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Studies.

Andrea holds a master’s degree in community development from Southern New Hampshire University, a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Hamline University and a bachelor’s degree in human services from Metropolitan State University. Andrea is a nationally and internationally recognized writer and artist, a 2011 Bush Fellow to advance the work of transgender inclusion and the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships. In 2018, Andrea completed the Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University.

See all featured leaders for LGBTQIA+ History on Hennepin.