Councilman Raúl De Jesús, Jr. is a lifelong Hartford resident and homeowner in Parkville, where he lives with his wife and family. Born, raised, and educated in the City he loves, he understands the issues that affect Hartford residents because he has experienced them first-hand. Raised in public housing at the now-closed Charter Oak Terrace, he attended eight Hartford Public Schools: Mary Hooker, Burns, M.D. Fox, Parkville, South Middle, Quirk, Bulkeley, and Hartford Public. From the age of ten, he moved between jobs from bagging groceries to washing windows and selling candy bars to support his family of nine. Looking for more permanent employment, Raúl’s political passions were unexpectedly ignited during a summer job in the former Mayor’s Department of Constituent Services, where he first caught a glimpse of the inner workings of City government. Seeing issues that he knew that could not be resolved without active involvement in government and with his favorite prayer, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference,” in mind, the young De Jesús determined to dedicate his life to public service.
In 2007, at just 20 years old, Raúl made a splash in Hartford politics by announcing his candidacy for the office of Mayor of Hartford. The campaign soon entered the national conversation when Lawrence Bender, Oscar-winning producer of 'Pulp Fiction' and Al Gore’s 'An Inconvenient Truth,’ and director Jason Pollock made him the subject of their documentary ‘The Youngest Candidate,’ which premiered at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado. He continues to encourage young people to become involved in politics in their communities.
Four years later, Raúl was elected to the Court of Common Council. Now in a position to use his experience and wisdom to make a real change in Hartford, he has dedicated his time there to making sure our municipal government works for us. Councilman De Jesús is committed to improving our once-struggling school system, and with a fairly recent student’s eye, brings a fresh perspective that isn’t usually represented in school governance. Hartford is now home to some of the best schools in the nation, including Prince Tech High School, where he helped develop a nationally award-winning school curriculum; however, we must continue to improve and provide opportunities for young people from Grade School through Graduate School. Dedicated to transparency in government, he has made sure that many issues affecting residents are made as public as possible, and not just known to insiders at City Hall. He is also active in promoting the local economy, including the development of small businesses and the growth of long-term, living wage jobs. He’s working with all parts of city government to create safer communities, preserve our parks and encourage forward-thinking environmental initiatives.
Raúl has served in several associations, societies and groups in the Hartford community. He is a member of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Charter Grand Knight OLS Council 19 of the Knights of Columbus, Vice Chairman of The Parent Academy, Board Member of the Hartford Food System and the City of Hartford Youth Commission Treasurer. He was formerly Co-President of the CCC Chapter of the National Society of Leadership & Success and is an alumnus of the Charter Oak Boxing Academy.
Samuel M. Pudlin
Court of Common Council
Executive Assistant to Council
550 Main Street, Rm#208
Hartford, CT 06103
Dir. Line 860-757-9561
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