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Jessica Cordova Kramer is Senior Managing Director of Alumni Engagement at Teach For America.
We left the Pine Ridge Reservation and drove 300 feet across the South Dakota border into the “town” of Whiteclay, Nebraska. No real housing, no street lamps, no sidewalks—nothing. As I looked around, lump in my throat, I was faced with a patently un-American scene: grown men and women passed out, on the street; a woman stumbling across the road.
“This is outrageous and unacceptable! But still the status quo, when money prevails over what is right and humane. It makes me sad to think my grandkids will still have Whiteclay to deal with and alcohol killing our people.”
Jessica is a quintessential New York, first-generation citizen and lawyer (no longer practicing) who found herself at Teach For America seven years ago and in the Midwest two years ago. Married to Eli Kramer (New York '03), executive director of Hiawatha Leadership Academies, the couple lives in Minneapolis with their two daughters Olivia and Talia. Jess is currently reading Rez Life by David Treuer while working to keep TFA alum engaged and fired up through volunteering, giving, digital media, and events.