NAACP director to speak in Rochester

From staff reports

The national director of education for the NAACP, who advocates closing the achievement gap in the country's schools, will bring his message to Rochester next month.

John H. Jackson will speak Oct. 14 during the annual Freedom Fund Banquet at the Kahler Grand Hotel to benefit the Rochester branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Jackson, 30, leads the association's education advocacy agenda, which consists of legislation, litigation and a new grassroots effort involving the NAACP working with parents, teachers, civic organizations, social services and others in communities across the country to improve education.

Two years ago, Jackson guided the NAACP's effort to launch a National Call for Action in Education to state governors nationwide. The Call for Action requested each state draw up an Education Equity Partnership Plan outlining plans to reduce education-related racial disparities by 50 percent during the next five years.


Jackson, a native of Chicago who now lives in Owing Mills, Md., is one of the few Americans who have earned five higher-education degrees, including a master's degree in education and doctorate of education degrees in administration, planning and social policy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Before joining the NAACP, Jackson was appointed during the Clinton administration to the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education, serving as special assistant to the assistant secretary and senior policy advisor. He previously worked as a program analyst at the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Small Business Program, where he was a liaison between the department and the White House Initiative for Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

He is currently a member of the Louisiana Bar Association, the American Bar Association, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Prince Hall Masonry and New Psalmist Baptist Church.

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