Andrea Jenkins

Minneapolis City Council, Ward 8

Andrea Jenkins was the first out Black transgender woman to win elected office in the U.S.!


Andrea Jenkins is currently the president of the Minneapolis City Council and represents the 8th Ward in South Minneapolis. She grew up in Chicago and graduated from Lindblom Technical High School in 1979.

Jenkins is the first Black transgender woman to be elected to public office in the United States. She was first elected to the council in 2017 with 73% of the vote.

Before being elected, Jenkins worked for twelve years as a policy aide to two members of the Minneapolis City Council and subsequently served as the oral historian for the Transgender Oral History Project at the University of Minnesota Libraries, documenting the lived experiences of transgender and gender nonconforming people in the Upper Midwest and the United States.

A poet and artist as well as a public official, Andrea is the author of the poetry collection The T is Not Silent: New and Selected Poems (Purple Lioness Press, 2015) and contributor to the acclaimed anthologies Queer Voices: Poetry, Prose and Pride (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2019), A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2016), and Blues Vision: African American Writing from Minnesota (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2015).

Jenkins holds a bachelor’s degree in human services, a master’s degree in community economic development, and an MFA in creative writing. She is the recipient of many awards, including a Bush Foundation Fellowship.