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Alejandra “Ali” Campoverdi looks like your typical cover girl.

She’s svelte, well put together and drop-dead gorgeous. But that’s where the similarities to the vast majority of her pin-up counterparts ends. This one time Maxim girl is a former White House staffer and graduate of Harvard’s Kennedy School of government. And she’s running for congress in California’s 34th district.

Today on International Women's Day, let's own all aspects of ourselves as women proudly – all the wonderful nuances, complexities and sometimes contradictions that make us who we are. Whole. #ca34 #breastcancer #BRCA #internationalwomensday 📸: @kylemonk #Repost @washingtonpost ・・・ “I do have this identity and history of personal experiences that inherently embody a lot of contradictions. I’ve ridden on Air Force One and in a ‘G ride.' I’ve used a black Sharpie marker to color in the chips on the heel of my boot before walking to work in the West Wing." Alejandra Campoverdi is a former Obama White House staffer from Los Angeles. She’s been a poor kid surviving on welfare, a reality show contestant, a Maxim model in skimpy lingerie, a Harvard graduate, and a groundbreaking first-ever deputy director of Hispanic media at the White House. Two years ago, she learned that she has a genetic mutation, known as BRCA2, that means she is extremely likely to develop breast cancer, the disease that took the lives of her grandmother and great-grandmother, and nearly took her mother’s. She inherited the grit of those three Mexican American women, but they also bequeathed her a gene that could kill her. Now, she's running for public office for the first time — and facing down the threat of cancer. #IWD #IWD2017 #internationalwomensday Photo: Kyle Monk/For The Washington Post

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Campoverdi, 37, appeared in the pages of Maxim in 2004 while she was an undergrad at USC. After graduating from Harvard, the Mexican beauty went on to join then-senator Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign and was later hired by his administration as the first-ever White House Deputy Director of Hispanic Media.

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While her brief stint as a lingerie model for Maxim has come up before during her political career, as well as immediately after announcing her congressional bid, she’s hardly side-stepped the issue.

“I’m proud of the mosaic of experiences that make me who I am,” Campoverdi wrote in a recent essay in Cosmopolitan. “My life experiences have forged me into a fighter and that’s why I decided that I won’t let others’ boxes stop me from doing what needs to be done…”

Campoverdi’s run will begin April 4th with her district’s primary election.

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