Rep. Jake Wheatley Jr., D-Allegheny, a recognized United States Marine combat veteran of Operation Desert Storm who received the Combat Action Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal and the Kuwait Liberation Medal, is a proud resident of the City of Pittsburgh. Rep. Wheatley holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University where he graduated with honors. He went on to receive a master’s of public administration from the University of Pittsburgh.
He was first elected in 2002 to represent the 19th Legislative District, which includes historic Pittsburgh neighborhoods such as: the Hill District, North Side, South Side, Allentown, Hazelwood, Downtown, the Bluff, Knoxville, Beltzhoover, Manchester, Arlington, Arlington Heights, and West, South and North Oakland, among others.
Jake Wheatley grew up in Detroit, Michigan. His parents separated when Jake was 13 years old. He lived with his father in Pontiac, Michigan. Jake went to Boys & Girls Clubs in Pontiac during that time. His father worked during the day so Jake had a safe place to go. It was there that he played football, basketball, pool, swimming etc. This Clubhouse stayed open until 8 PM so it was perfect as his father came home around 7:30PM each evening. Without Boys & Girls Clubs, Jake would have nowhere to grow, socialize, learn to be responsible and have fun!
Jake said that he grew up in a high crime neighborhood and credits Boys & Girls Clubs for saving his life. He explained that the men in the building were like big brothers to him. They gave him life guidance and made sure he showed up every day, showing him the importance of responsibility.
Jake moved to Minnesota later in high school to be with his mother. His high school had an Inroads program that Jake participated and excelled in. Following high school, Jake went to college and the Marine Corp. He graduated from NC A & T State University in Greenville, NC. He then went to University of Pittsburgh for graduate school.
Jake was a Political Science major with original aspirations of becoming an attorney. It was when he volunteered on two campaigns that he changed his mind. Seeing the direct impact policy making has on the community is why Jake decided to serve in government.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania would like to thank Representative Jake Wheately for championing the cause of access and inclusion for all Pennsylvanians. Your interest in pushing for economic development, mass transit, and true education funding and academic advancements for all children as well as providing leadership on covering every Pennsylvanian with quality, affordable and error-free health care are appreciated beyond words. We are so proud that you are a Boys & Girls Club Alumnus!