V. J. Jensen II


About Val

I feel like I have lived 15 different lives. I guess that's what many military kids can say. Growing up in a military family, I got an early dose of the wanderlust and international draw. I was born in upstate New York, but at five, my traveling began. First to the desert of California, then to the land of Gundam and Dragon ball Z (Japan), then back to the beaches of California and then to the jungle and humidity of Guam where I graduated high school. I moved back to California after Guam and graduated from the University of Redlands with my BA. In my last year, I found acting.  I was in the Fall production of the House of Blue Leaves and two other student productions before I packed up my bags and went to acting school for two years in LA.

I attended the intensive program at the Loft Studio while working as a hawker at the movie theater on City Walk. In the end, I accomplished what I set out to do in Hollywood, including playing the drums in a band, and decided on a different life.  I moved to Oceanside where worked at the San Diego Union Tribune in production before heading back to school for my first MA. I wanted to pursue my early love of traveling and learning cultures, so I went to Israel for two years. I ended up eventually spending three years in Israel altogether and obtained two Master degrees. After returning to the U.S., I did multiple internships in journalism and think tanks before entering the U.S. State Department and have been there ever since.   

Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw, Poland


Currently Reading

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway

Just Finished

Almost Autumn by Marianne Kaurin

FUn Fact

I finished making my first chainmail shirt at age 22.

If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write something worth reading or do things worth writing.

-Benjamin Franklin