Transgender activist Andrea Jenkins said Monday she will run for Minneapolis City Council in the 8th Ward, which will be vacated by Elizabeth Glidden, who is not running for re-election.

Jenkins, a former policy aide for Glidden and veteran presence at City Hall, aims to be the first transgender member of the Minneapolis City Council. Another transgender candidate, Phillipe Cunningham, is running for council in Ward 4.

“I am prepared and ready to bring positive change toward a more equitable Minneapolis,” Jenkins said in a statement. “I look forward to working with the residents of the 8th Ward, and beyond, in creating the policies and programs necessary to bring sustainable improvement for everyone in our economy, housing, and services.”

Jenkins is one of six candidates of color who have announced runs for the City Council, including Cunningham, Jeremiah Ellison and Raeisha Williams in Ward 5, Mohamed Farah in Ward 9 and Erica Mauter in Ward 11.

Jenkins is well-known in the south-central Minneapolis ward where she’s running, having worked to help spur redevelopment near 38th Street and Chicago Avenue starting about 15 years ago, when the area was blighted and crime-ridden.

Jenkins won a 2011 Bush Fellowship to work on transgender inclusion and, after 12 years working for two different council members, became the curator of the Transgender Oral History Project at the University of Minnesota, in which she recorded hundreds of hours of conversations with transgender people in Minneapolis and Chicago and the rural reaches of the Midwest.

State Sen. Scott Dibble will be her campaign chairman.

“We will run a positive, inclusive and people-driven campaign focused on equity, affordable housing and sensible transit and transportation options for our diverse community,” Jenkins said.

 

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