Jacqueline Carroll Jones has more than 20 years of organizing experience with the Jeremiah Group and the Industrial Areas Foundation. Before becoming an organizer, Jones taught regular and special education classes in the Jefferson Parish public school system for 23 years. She also served as Intervention Coordinator for the parish’s only special education alternative high school program.
Jones was one of two African-Americans students who integrated Worley Junior High School in 1965, an experience that prompted her lifelong fight for justice. She has since worked with presidents, governors and mayors on collaborative efforts in Jefferson, Orleans and St. Tammany Parishes of Louisiana and in Houston, Texas.
After Hurricane Katrina, Jones secured $75 million for a first-time affordable homebuyers program, the largest in New Orleans history, led the effort for state legislation to allow polling sites outside of the City and changed the criteria for absentee mail-in voting. Jones led efforts to reform admissions to the Jefferson Parish Advanced Academies and serves on the oversight committee.
She has received several accolades, including the Louisiana Disaster Recovery Foundation’s LORA Award and Cox Communications’ Trailblazer Award. New Orleans City Business Magazine named her a Woman of the Year.
In this clip, Jones describes how her childhood experiences led her into a life of education and activism.