Gil Cisneros is a former Naval Officer, Under Secretary of Defense, Los Angeles County Congressmember, and an education leader running for Congress to fight for the people of the San Gabriel Valley.
The son of a public school cafeteria worker and a Vietnam veteran, Gil attended college on a Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (R.O.T.C.) scholarship, and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from The George Washington University. Gil also holds an MBA from Regis University and M.A. in Urban Education Policy from Brown. As the first in his family to graduate from college, Gil has fought Republican attempts to cut education funding and Pell Grants, tools that empower not just students, but entire communities.
Through ten years of service to our country as a U.S. Naval Officer, Gil was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, the National Defense Medal, and the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal for his exemplary service to his country.
After his Navy service, Gil worked as a logistics manager for Frito-Lay, with facilities in the City of Industry and Rancho Cucamonga, building a middle-class life for himself and his family.
Gil dedicated himself to philanthropy when he purchased a winning California Mega Millions lottery ticket in 2010. Gil and Jacki partnered with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the City of Pico Rivera to create Generation First Degree Pico Rivera, with the goal of putting a college degree in every household in the city, and communities across the San Gabriel Valley. Gil has worked to strengthen schools, and promote access to quality education by supporting Yellow Ribbon programs for Veterans, establishing scholarships, and creating an endowment for the dependents of former Navy Supply Corps personnel, so that tuition costs are never a barrier to educational opportunities. Gil also served on the advisory board of Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative for college access.
After the election of Donald Trump, Gil ran for Congress with the support of middle-class families and labor unions to stand up for our Democracy and Democratic values.
From 2019 to 2021, Cisneros served as U.S. representative for Los Angeles county in California’s 39th Congressional District where he served on the Armed Services and Veterans Affairs committees.
In Congress, Cisneros directly recovered over $550K for constituents, brought home $136M in non-COVID related grants for infrastructure and services, responded to 119K letters, and held 250 in-district events, including 30 town halls. Cisneros co-sponsored the bipartisan Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019 to extend VA care to “Blue Water Navy” veterans exposed to Agent Orange, lowered health insurance premiums through the repeal of the federal health insurance tax, and secured funding for improving military transition assistance and employment programs, making it easier to connect veterans with the benefits they earned. Cisneros also restored and protected $255M in federal funding for Hispanic Serving Institutions, and he championed language in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to foster greater diversity in our military officer corps, while also supporting military families on issues of housing, child abuse, and exceptional family members.
Congressman Cisneros stood up to Donald Trump and his corruption. He voted to impeach Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of justice.
In 2021, Gil was appointed by President Biden to be Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness and the Military’s Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer.
As Undersecretary, Cisneros ensured basic rights were protected; he implemented the Pentagon’s newest abortion policy for military personnel, which covers travel costs and time off for troops who travel out of state due to abortion restrictions or bans in the state where they are stationed. Cisneros worked to protect LGBTQ+ service members and implement 80 recommendations to reform the military sexual assault and harassment guidelines and practices, including creating an independent counsel’s office for sexual assault cases.
Overseeing the Department of Defense education system and 160 schools in 11 foreign countries, and 7 states, Cisneros increased access to childcare for both military families and DoD civilian employees. He was the driving factor to ensure DoD implemented Universal Pre-K in their elementary schools around the world.
Now with MAGA extremists running the House of Representatives, Gil is running for Congress to stand up for the San Gabriel Valley and continue his mission of service, advocating for veterans, students, our environment, and the middle class.