"Living and being happy in the moment – in each and every moment – came naturally to John, and I think he made it easier for the rest of us to do the same, simply by being near us.”
– Kate Bindley
John was a firm believer in the importance of education and understood the power of knowledge – to be successful as an individual and help others succeed in the process. We aggressively raised money through fundraising events to finance a scholarship fund in John’s name at Georgetown University. In November 2006, we successfully reached and exceeded the initial fundraising goal of $100,000 for a named scholarship and since then have annually awarded one or two students with the John T. Jackson Memorial Scholarship. In 2015, with the contribution of additional funds to the scholarship, we reached the major milestone of fully funding the annual scholarship for one need-based student in the McDonough School of Business.
In 2015, we founded the John T. Jackson Endowed Experiential Learning Fund within Georgetown University’s Center for Social Justice, Research, Teaching & Service. The Fund supports students who want to engage in experiential learning opportunities outside of the classroom-internships, research fellowships and service-leading experiences. These experiences enable need-based students to gain greater understanding of how to approach new problems and combine all their expertise to create solutions as part of their Georgetown experience. This is the first fund of its kind at Georgetown. The annual Memorial Scholarship and Fund recipients benefit from the endowment at Georgetown University in perpetuity, ensuring rich academic excellence and leadership in the generations ahead in John’s memory.
In 2005, we broadened our reach beyond education to social service, particularly in Chicago, site of the tragedy and the city where John settled shortly before the accident. We partnered with Catholic Charities of Chicago “Forever Free” Program which provides a healthy, drug-free, residential environment for women and women with children who are recovering from alcohol and substance abuse. A day was spent repainting and cleaning housing establishments for the women and families in need in John’s name.
In 2010, we extended our reach to the arts and partnered with RxArt, the beneficiary of the 2010 Chicago Celebration and non-profit organization committed to fostering artistic expression and awareness through the challenging yet rewarding task of engaging patients through contemporary art in healthcare facilities. An art exhibit by Keith Haring, artist and social activist, will be placed in John’s name at La Rabida Children’s Hospital in Chicago.
In 2013, the John T. Jackson Endowed Campership was created in memory of John. John attended Cheley Colorado Camps for several years in the 90’s, and went on to become an avid athlete and outdoorsman interested in travel and world exploration. Created by his family, the Endowed Campership annually sends one camper to Cheley Colorado Camps in the summer.
In 2005, the John T. Jackson ’99 Fund for Student Leadership was created in memory of John, who led both by words and actions, at The Pembroke Hill School. Created by his family, and many friends, along with input from John’s former teachers, the fund underwrites training for student leaders in all areas of academic excellence.
Additionally, in 2005, the John T. Jackson Soccer Trophy was created to recognize outstanding leadership within the boy’s soccer program. This award, presented annually, appropriately memorializes John and his many wonderful characteristics in the eyes of Pembroke Hill students and the Pembroke Hill community.
The John T. Jackson ’99 Memorial Scholarship, named in 2013, provides a scholarship award to a currently-enrolled Pembroke Hill student moving from 8th to 9th grade. This annual scholarship is awarded to a student, selected by Pembroke Hill faculty and administrators, based on strength of character, a trait for which John was recognized and celebrated.
John approached all of his interests with energy, zest and fervor. He was a committed athlete – from Pembroke Hill’s soccer and tennis teams, to a member of Georgetown’s nationally-ranked, varsity sailing team. In March 2004, the Georgetown University Sailing Team, G.U.S.T., honored John by commemorating a boat in his name and creating the annual John T. Jackson Memorial Race Regatta. The two-day regatta, one of the first of the team sailing season, is held annually in early March in Washington, DC, inviting top teams from around the country to compete. Additionally, the Foundation contributes annually to G.U.S.T., helping to fund the purchase of new boats, sails and sailing equipment.
In 2011, we partnered with The Judd Goldman Adaptive Sailing Foundation (JGASF), an organization dedicated to providing classroom and on-water instruction for the physically disabled, to fund the purchase of a 2.4 metre adaptive sailboat, GUST, for the JGASF fleet in Chicago. The sailboat has adaptations so that it can be sailed by either disabled or able-bodied individuals, all at an arm’s length, helping people achieve self-esteem and independence. This year, we are funding the John T. Jackson Sailing Team, comprised of eight to 10 experienced JGASF sailors, both able-bodied and disabled, who will compete in regattas throughout the country.