Brenna Parker, ’17, Outstanding New Professional Award Recipient
“Kent State provided me with a world-class education that prepared me to be in the spaces I'm lucky to serve in now. The professors I had at Kent State became family to me. They saw something in me as a student that I didn't see in myself, and I'm grateful that they continue to be a part of my life."
On the White House communications team is a group of dedicated public servants working to craft messages from the President to the world, including one Kent State alumna – Brenna Parker, ’17. Brenna oversees all digital strategy, content and partnerships for Vice President Kamala Harris.
In the years following her graduation from Kent State, Brenna has worked on some of the biggest movements of the last five years, including leading digital communications for the National Domestic Workers Alliance during the #MeToo movement, the family separation crisis for Families Belong Together and media relations for the student walkouts in response to the 2018 Parkland shooting.
Being part of the force for change in these moments has been a fulfilling experience for her, and she encourages current Kent State students and students across the nation to lend their time and talents to causes that move them.
“Find a cause or issue that you care about and get involved,” said Brenna. “The fight for equality and civil rights has historically been led by students. We need young voices at the table and in these rooms fighting for change.”
Brenna has also executed campaigns for organizations such as Civic Nation, ACRONYM, When We All Vote, Reach Higher, Apple and YouTube. During the 2020 election, she had the opportunity to manage two of President Biden's most critical online platforms: his Facebook and website. She was responsible for organic strategy and execution of social content across President Biden’s Facebook page, which grew from 2.5 million to 6.4 million over the final 60 days of the campaign.
Today, she works in the Office of the Vice President at the White House. She has traveled with Vice President Harris on numerous trips, domestic and foreign, and was part of the official U.S. delegations to the Munich Security Conference and Summit of the Americas.
“I'm most proud of the work I've done serving the Biden-Harris Administration,” Brenna said. “It's been the opportunity of a lifetime to travel around America meeting the people we are fighting for in their communities. We've passed huge pieces of legislation from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to the Inflation Reduction Act that are going to make significant changes to our nation.”
As an undergraduate student, Brenna was interested in the intersection of social justice, storytelling and culture. She credits her professors and experience at Kent State in preparing her to lead in the spaces she’s currently serving.
“Kent State provided me with a world-class education that prepared me to be in the spaces I'm lucky to serve in now. The professors I had at Kent State became family to me. They saw something in me as a student that I didn't see in myself, and I'm grateful that they continue to be a part of my life," said Brenna.