As the gay, Asian son of immigrants, Ranen grew up with an acute understanding that representation and policy had the power to transform lives. His identity taught him the importance of uplifting marginalized voices through politics to promote equity and justice. In high school, Ranen represented the United States on the national debate team. His time in debate deepened his understanding of domestic and international policy issues and reaffirmed his passion for public service. Beyond competitive debate, Ranen used his public speaking skills to lobby his Board of Education for recognition of Diwali and Lunar New Year, hosted fundraisers that raised over $25,000 for a variety of philanthropic causes, and organized the Day of Silence and Pride Wall at his school to amplify LGBTQ+ voices.
Ranen enrolled at Washington University in St. Louis in 2019, where he was elected class president on a platform of student advocacy and service. During his term, Ranen secured an administrative commitment to install more menstrual product dispensers, co-organized the largest gift drive in Washington University’s history, and advocated for subsidization of PrEP in the university healthcare plan, more gender-neutral restrooms, and expanded mental health services. In March of 2020, he was elected student body president with a focus on increasing equity and representation. After graduation, Ranen plans to pursue a career in public service. He sees government as a powerful way to symbolically and materially empower others, and he hopes to spend his life bringing hope and love into the lives of other people.