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Jovanka with her grandson and son


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As a counselor for underserved youth for decades, I’ve seen how the lives of our kids and their families can be transformed. As a city councilmember, I’ve seen how neighbors can organize a city from hopelessness, violence and systemic corruption to a much better future. Now I am running for the California State Assembly to help transform our state.

I attended Florida A&M on a full basketball scholarship, graduating cum laude. My story is the story of California. I was born in Panama City, Panama and immigrated to the U.S. with my parents in 1972. They taught me the critical values of respect for others as I experienced the challenge of adjusting to a new culture.

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