RUN FOR OFFICE
Florida State Senate, District 38
PRIMARY: Aug 23rd
Network Development Contract Specialist
"Being an openly LGBTQ candidate is going to open me up to some personal attacks that I know will come towards me, will come towards my wife and I know that that's going to be one of the obstacles that we face internally as a family."
The daughter of Cuban exiles who fled Castro’s communist dictatorship and became successful entrepreneurs, she is an advocate, policymaker, and small business owner.
After graduating from Florida International University, Janelle moved to Washington, D.C. and began her career on Capitol Hill, honing her policy analysis skills. During her time in Washington, Janelle also focused on helping those in need. She volunteered at a non-profit, where she worked with low-income immigrants by helping them improve their basic Spanish literacy skills in their native language.
At the age of 28, Janelle was diagnosed with Stage IV Follicular Lymphoma, an aggressive, incurable cancer. After her diagnosis, Janelle moved to Miami in order to prioritize her health and start a family with her wife, Monica.
Janelle currently lives in Pinecrest with her wife and their two daughters. She is one of the owners of a Hispanic-owned and family-owned Medicare company in Miami-Dade County. It is one of Florida’s fastest growing Medicare companies, providing affordable, high-quality medical services to Medicare beneficiaries in the county.
Before joining Perez’s campaign, Gianna worked as policy and campaigns manager for The CLEO Institute, a Coral Gables-headquartered nonprofit dedicated to nonpartisan climate crisis education and advocacy. Her policy and grassroots organizing experience are very helpful in running a campaign focused on the real issues facing their communities, like access to affordable, high-quality healthcare, combatting the climate crisis, and supporting small businesses.
As Janelle's wife, Monica not only helps Janelle with her campaign but also takes care of the house and their children. As the self appointed "House CEO" her duties require her to take care of the home so that Janelle can work full time and run a successful campaign. Seeing Janelle's cancer journey first hand, she wants Janelle to have the opportunity to run because she knows how much it means to her and how her remission has given her a new opportunity to fight for the change she wants to see in the world.
Vice President, Political & Programs at Ruth's List Florida
Kayla Van Wieringen
Kayla is the Vice President, Political & Programs at Ruth's List Florida, an organization that supports Democratic pro-choice women to state and local office in Florida. When she learned that Janelle was running she thought she was the perfect candidate to not only connect with the democratic side but as a former republican, she could also connect with moderate Republicans and independent voters.