Irma Ortiz was born and raised on the southeast side of Chicago, and identifies as Mexican-American or Chicana. Growing up as an only child allowed Irma to establish extremely close relationships with friends as well as gain a strong sense of independence. She has a close relationship with her parents, and talks to them on a daily basis.
She attended Catholic school in the early school years, then transferred to the Chicago Public Schools and continued there through high school. She graduated from the University of Illinois and Chicago and lived at home during the college years. Later, she pursued a Master’s degree and is currently a doctoral candidate in Education Policy Organization and Leadership with an emphasis on Diversity and Equity.
Irma is strongly passionate about her career and leads a large team within the higher education setting, focused on K-12 outreach. She is also a mom to three mixed-race boys ages 7, 9, 11, and is happily raising them with her life partner, whom she has been with for 15 years. In her free time, she loves to go on lakefront walks, have movie nights with her family and try new restaurants with her friends. She is active in multiple organizations and is a self-proclaimed decluttering coach.