Jes is the Director of Special Projects at Advance Native Political Leadership. In this role, she oversees several large initiatives and programs within the organization.
Jes is a political organizer and trainer with a focus on state and local campaigns. She first began working on campaigns in San Antonio, TX as a deputy field organizer for Ron Nirenberg’s successful mayoral campaign where she discovered a passion for organizing. That same year she joined Cheryl Turpin’s campaign for VA House of Delegates as an organizer and flipped a Republican-held state legislative seat. Cruz went on to work at EMILY’s List, helping to train thousands of women to run for office through the Run to Win program. She then spent the 2020 cycle in Florida as the Training Director for the Florida Democratic Party and Florida Coordinated Campaign. While there she developed an online training program that trained over 4,000 volunteers, staff, and candidates on campaign skills as well as over 3,000 volunteers on canvassing and line management.
In 2021, Jes managed Megan Zwisohn’s campaign for Commonwealth’s Attorney in Norfolk, VA. Since then, Cruz has built a consulting portfolio that includes GAIN Power, Women’s Democracy Lab and Dunia Political Impact with projects focused on developing effective systems, operations, and training curriculum. Jes resides in Virginia Beach with her dog, Trudy.