Giovanni Triana is a first-generation immigrant from Guadalajara, Mexico. His family emigrated to the United States when he was five years old in order to escape poverty in 1999. He grew up in Charlotte, N. C. where he played soccer, tennis, and wrestled at Rocky River High School before graduating in 2012. Growing up in Charlotte, North Carolina with a single mom raising three kids and working two jobs instilled the values of hard work, determination, resilience, and self-reliance. Although Gio often found himself getting into trouble at school, the death and incarceration of his two best friends, respectively, compelled him to strive for his full potential.
Gio originally attended Marshall University before transferring to East Carolina University, where he received a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Mathematics. In addition to his involvement on the student conduct board, he also served as the Community Outreach Director for the Student Government before being promoted to Chief of Staff, where he oversaw the daily operations of the Executive Office of the President. During his tenure, he sponsored various bills designed to protect student rights on campus (e.g., Syllabus Bank Resolution, Keep Dowdy Hydrated, and the Restore/Preserve Campus Free Speech bill).
He embarked upon his political career in the conservative movement as a grassroots-activist, managing the social media for a brand-new organization on campus at the time called, Turning Point USA (TPUSA). He was elected Chapter President the following year where he effectively spearheaded efforts to abolish restrictive speech zones on his campus and eventually the entire University of North Carolina system. He hosted various events, one of which being Tomi Lahren in Hendrix Theater – resulting in a community conversation regarding the nature of speech. It garnered national press and partly aided the efforts to restore and preserve the First Amendment in North Carolina.
As an intern at TPUSA during the summer of 2016, Gio had the opportunity to author a publication titled, “The Case Against Gun Control” that was distributed to thousands of TPUSA chapters nationwide. The following summer, he was accepted into the Koch Fellowship Program where he interned at the American Legislative Exchange Council. This experience allowed him to author a prospective direct mail letter used in a national campaign – netting over $22,000 in profit.
The following year he founded the NRA Collegiate Coalition (NRACC) at ECU where he quickly expanded membership to over 100 students – engaging the campus in the form of providing self-defense classes, panel discussions, shooting range trips, raffles, trips to the state capitol, competitive shooting, and free concealed carry classes. In addition to establishing the second-ever NRACC in the nation, he raised over $5,000 in local donations and membership dues that were all re-invested into the local community.
Giovanni’s work has been featured on The Washington Examiner, Campus Reform, The College Fix, Hypeline News, Rabble Rouser, and The Classy Libertarian. During his free time, Gio enjoys working out, playing golf, and shooting his Springfield XDS.