At 19 years old she was stricken with Guillan-Barre, an autoimmune disease that completely paralyzed her. Confined to a wheelchair, she had to learn how to walk, eat, and talk again. Jeannette refused to give up and fought hard to recover and finish what she started.
Community College allowed her to transfer to UCLA and earn degrees in Women’s Studies and Political Science. This experience gave Jeannette a deep understanding of the importance of Community College which allowed her access to higher education she would otherwise not be able to afford. Jeannette continued her studies to earn a Master’s degree in Public Administration from California State University, Northridge.
It was at Community College where Jeannette developed a passion for education and found amazing educators who provided her with guidance and mentorship on how to pursue her educational and career goals.
She began her career in print and broadcast journalism working at Telemundo/NBC News as Assignment Desk editor. Journalism was her first exposure to "real" politics. She would interview politicians and cover elections as a field producer.
This exposure to public service led Jeannette to pursue work in the areas that impacted her own family growing up: education, economic opportunity, and veteran’s issues. After her career in journalism, Jeannette and her family moved to Ventura where they have lived and worked for more than 13 years.
In addition to her public service, Jeannette volunteers and serves on the board of various non-profits throughout Ventura County. Jeannette is the President of the Ventura County Women’s Political Council where their goal is to educate, train, and prepare women to run for office. She also serves on the Executive Board of the Turning Point Foundation, an organization dedicated to addressing homelessness and Veteran issues in Ventura County, and is also a board member of El Concilio Family Services, an immigration advocacy group.