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Thursday, January 25, 2018                                         For Immediate Release
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Former colleagues offer  condolences on the passing of the Honorable Johnny Jackson, Jr.
Johnny Jackson_ Jr. _David Gilkey_NPR_
Johnny Jackson, Jr. (Photo Credit: David Gilkey/NPR)

Eddie L. Sapir
Eddie L. Sapir
"Johnny was very brave and courageous fighting his battle with cancer. When he was healthy, he fought for his district and the city with the same braveness and courage. New Orleans will sadly miss Johnny, as will I. My prayers go out to his family and loved ones."

Eddie L. Sapir, former President, New Orleans City Council

Cynthia Willard-Lewis
Cynthia Willard-Lewis
Johnny Jackson loved people, especially his loving family, including his Desire-Florida family, Mighty Carver Rams family, and Zulu family. He valiantly fought his final battle with faith and courage. We pray for the peace and comfort of Miss Jean, Jeanne, and KJ.

Cynthia Willard-Lewis, former New Orleans City Councilmember, District "E"

Oliver M. Thomas
Oliver M. Thomas
"Johnny was one of those from the age of public officials who emerged from the struggle in black neighborhoods. The struggles of people gave him a voice. People like Johnny Jackson, Dorothy Mae Taylor, Rev. Avery C. Alexander - when they spoke, it wasn't their voices, but the voice of the voiceless."

Oliver M. Thomas, former President, New Orleans City Council

Ellen Hazeur
Ellen Hazeur
"I am saddened by the news of former State Representative and City Councilman Johnny Jackson's passing. He was more than just my predecessor on the New Orleans City Council, he was a friend and dedicated public servant. My prayers go out to his wife Jean, his children, and family."

Ellen Hazeur, Clerk of First City Court and former New Orleans City Councilmember, District "E"

Nadine Ramsey
Nadine Ramsey
"While I am so sorry for the loss of the Honorable Johnny Jackson, Jr., I want to take this moment to celebrate his accomplishments, the lives he helped to make better, his legacy that will never be forgotten, and his friendship. Johnny Jackson was truly a dedicated activist who worked for the betterment of our community both out front and behind the scenes. He worked continually for this City he loved so much; a genuine leader and philanthropist. He will be missed."

Nadine Ramsey, New Orleans City Councilmember, District "C", Judge (Ret.) of Orleans Civil District Court


Johnny Jackson Jr., former New Orleans councilman and state lawmaker, dead at 74


Johnny Jackson Jr., a former New Orleans city councilman, state representative and 9th Ward community leader, died Wednesday. He was 74.

From 1986 until 1994, Jackson served as the District E representative on the New Orleans City Council, representing New Orleans East and the Lower 9th Ward. Prior to his two terms at City Hall, he served in the state House of Representatives from 1972 to 1986.

A New Orleans native, Jackson's was a 1961 graduate of George Washington Carver High School and a 1965 graduate of Southern University at New Orleans.

Jackson was director of the Desire Community Center at the time of the 1970 standoff between New Orleans police and members of the Black Panther Party, who used the center to offer breakfast and tutoring programs for children.

He was elected to the Legislature in 1971 as the body's third African-American member, following Ernest "Dutch" Morial, who would later be elected the city's first African-American mayor, and future City Councilwoman Dorothy Mae Taylor.

"It was a challenging situation for me," Jackson said in an interview with the University of New Orleans Midlo Center for New Orleans Studies. "There were new doors of not only opportunity, but also new doors of challenges to make sure that blacks were involved in all aspects of state government."

Jackson became the New Orleans delegation's floor leader soon after his election and was a founding member of the state's Legislative Black Caucus. "I think we got the respect of other legislators who realized we were a force to be dealt with," he said in the interview. He also served as a delegate to the 1973 convention that rewrote the state constitution.

Jackson said he was recruited to run for the Legislature by members of the 9th Ward political organization known as SOUL. He was a member of that group and later a founding member of another political group, DAWN.

On the City Council, Jackson headed the housing committee and was a strong advocate for his district, seeking economic opportunity and improved city services for residents. He was also known for taking a stand for human rights, drafting legislation aimed at ensuring equal treatment of all residents, particularly gay and lesbian citizens.

"I pride myself on being a voice of consciousness, but also on having diverse interests," Jackson told The Times-Picayune in 1994.

Jackson was a former board member of Total Community Action Inc., the New Orleans East Economic Development Foundation, the Desire-Florida Area Community Council, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation, WWOZ Radio and the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club.

Jackson was criticized in the 1990s for giving himself a Tulane University legislative scholarship to earn a master's degree in social work while serving as a state lawmaker. Jackson's daughters were also awarded scholarships by other politicians.

Though he initially defended his decision to give himself the scholarship, he later came to regret the choice. "The prevailing ethics at the time were such that it was not illegal or unethical for me to take the scholarship," he told the newspaper in 1994. "It's not something that I would ever do again."

News of his role in the scholarship scandal likely contributed to Jackson's loss in a 1994 campaign for an at-large seat on the City Council. After several years in private business, in 2003, he tried to make a political comeback with a run for clerk of Orleans Parish Criminal District Court. He topped the field of 10 candidates in the primary election but lost in a runoff to Kimberly Williamson Butler, the former chief administrative officer under Mayor Ray Nagin.

After Hurricane Katrina devastated the 9th Ward and Jackson's home, he spent two days in the Morial Convention Center with relatives before making his way to the West Bank and eventually returning to New Orleans years later, according to a 2007 article in Gambit by author Jason Berry.

He later moved to Texas.

Peggy Wilson, the City Council's only Republican during Jackson's tenure and a political opponent on many issues, said she last saw Jackson a year or two ago when he was visiting from Houston, and that she commented he looked good, trim and well-dressed. "He teased me that it was because he was living in a Republican neighborhood," she said Thursday.

Funeral arrangements have not been announced.


STEM SATURDAY with Dr. Calvin Mackie presents "The Physics of Sound: Waves, Vibrations and Music"
STEM - January 27
STEM SATURDAY with Dr. Calvin Mackie presents "The Physics of Sound:
Waves, Vibrations and Music" on January 27th, 2018! REGISTRATION is
now OPEN through January 25th or until capacity is reached! The event will
be held at the newly constructed Pete Sanchez Multi-Center located at 1616
Caffin Ave in the Historic Lower 9th ward area of New Orleans from 9 am to
12:30 PM. The STEM topics will be sound! Register at  ILSI Engineering is a Bronze sponsor for this

Students will work with STEM professionals and college students on
activities and projects to learn about the physics of sound. Sound is a type
of energy made by vibrations. When any object vibrates, it causes movement
in the air particles. These particles bump into the particles close to them,
which makes them vibrate too causing them to bump into more air particles.
This movement, called sound waves, keeps going until they run out of
energy. If your ear is within range of the vibrations, you hear the sound. Think
of when you clap your hands, or when you slam the car door shut. That action
produces sound waves, which travel to your ears and then to your brain,
which says, "I recognize that sound." Sound needs a medium (air, water,etc)
to travel and sound waves have an amplitude (volume) frequency (pitch),
wavelength (speed), etc which determine how loud is the sound. Therefore,
sound does not exist in the vacuum of space. Each student will build either
a musical instrument or a speaker to reinforce the lesson about sound.

Since starting in Dec 2013, STEM NOLA has engaged over 13,000 K-12 kids
from over 450 schools in STEM hands-on activities, come out to see why
more kids are showing up at recreation facilities to participate STEM
activities than for individual sports!!

A limited number of FREE slots are available for ALL students who receive
free or reduced lunch vouchers on a first come basis, all others must pay
$60 for participation. You must register online!!! For more info or to register

Registration will be on a First come/First serve basis. Participation will be
limited to the first 125 (One hundred) registrants. The event will be held at
the newly constructed Pete Sanchez Multi-Center located at 1616 Caffin Ave
in the Historic Lower 9th ward area of New Orleans from 9 am to 12:30
PM. The STEM topics will be the Physics of Sound! Register at  Direct all question via email (
or phone 504-391-0730.

Thank you for helping STEM NOLA reach the goal of exposing, inspiring and
engaging the youth of our communities to see and experience the unlimited
possibilities in STEM.


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