Educator-in-Residence: Dr. Thelma Jackson

The Race & Pedagogy Initiative and its Community Partners Forum, with support of the Catharine Gould Chism Fund, presents an inaugural interdisciplinary series of events that features educators, scholars, artists, and activists whose work stimulates critical intellectual engagement about issues of racial justice and educational reform, pushing boundaries of civic and political consciousness with non-traditional voices and representation. 

The Spring 2013 series entitled "American Voices:  Invisibility, Art, and Educational Justice" features and connects the work of four visiting scholars and artists through presentation, class visits, workshops, and conversation sessions. Program introductions and residency framework are provided by RPI Chism Lead Educator, Dr. Thelma Jackson, founder and owner of Foresight Consultants.

For more information about the Race & Pedagogy Chism Series or to schedule campus classroom visits, contact the Race & Pedagogy Initiative at 253.879.2435 or email

Race & Pedagogy Chism Series Lead Educator/Scholar-in-residence: Dr. Thelma Jackson

Dr. Thelma JacksonDr. Thelma A. Jackson is owner of Foresight Consultants, bringing over 30 years of experience in education change initiatives, restructuring and reform, equity and diversity, policy making, school boardsmanship, cultural competency, community mobilization, strategic planning, educational auditing, school improvement, systemic change, curriculum evaluation for bias and fairness, professional development, and educational transformation.  Dr. Jackson served on Task Forces and Advisory Councils for five Governors of the State of Washington, including the Governor’s Council on Education Reform and Funding (G-CERF), which resulted in the state’s education reform law. Thelma served on the Advisory Council for the Implementation of HB 2722, the legislation dealing with “Closing the Achievement Gap for African American Students” in the state.

Dr. Jackson has served in numerous leadership capacities over the years, such as President of the Washington State School Directors’ Association; for 20 years was a Member and five-time President of the North Thurston School Board; as Chair of the State Advisory Council on Vocational Education; as Chairperson of the Washington State Legislative Ethics Board; as Chair of the Commission on African American Affairs; and as President of the Board of Trustees of The Evergreen State College, where she later taught as an Adjunct Faculty in Urban Education.  Dr. Jackson has participated as an education panelist, seminar leader, facilitator, workshop presenter, and keynote speaker at more than 175 education-related events during her career.

Thelma has served on numerous Boards of community, civic, and service organizations such as the Thurston Group of Washington State, Northwest Women’s Law Center, Thurston Community Foundation, Leadership Thurston County, Education Renewal Institute, Pacific Mountain Private Industry Council, Pacific Peaks Girl Scout Council, and the Olympia YWCA. She is listed in Who’s Who in America for 2006 and 2007, and is the recipient of a number of recognitions and awards for educational and community service. Thelma is the Immediate Past President of the Washington Alliance of Black School Educators, currently serves on the Steering Committee of the Black Education Strategy Roundtable, is a member of the Board of the League of Education Voters, and a life member of the NAACP. The Northwest Institute for Leadership and Change is the non-profit organization founded by her. She continues to be a visionary and respected community leader in the state of Washington, as well as a Mentor to many outstanding and talented individuals.

Her education background includes a B.S. in Biochemistry from Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Change from Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, CA. She and her husband Nat, of 45 years, have 3 children and 4 grandchildren. They have lived in Lacey for the past 41 years.