The registration drives were meant to build a voter base capable of boosting candidates of color into office, Stith said. Four years later, Jean Mc Guire became the city’s first black school committeewoman.That same year, 1981, Bruce Bolling was the first African-American elected to City Council in a decade.When Jackson gets going on a topic, he can slip into a preacher’s cadence. “My faith is such a large part of who I am because, hey — all the data says I’m not supposed to be here,” he said, in one of two lengthy Globe interviews for this profile.
He had a dedicated phone line in his house for community-related calls.
As an undergrad at the University of New Hampshire, Jackson was elected student body president by a nearly all-white school. Jackson has good comic timing and a command of self-deprecating jokes. “I went in skinny.”A friend described Jackson as somebody who knows at least a little bit about everything, so he can gab with just about anybody.
Even then, he moved easily among groups and cliques, neither alienating nor settling down with any one of them.***In his district, it seems everybody who Jackson bumps into knows him, and has a story or a bit of news to share. His political style is to persuade by educating; he liberally cites statistics and facts.
Jackson has made income inequality and the economic pressure on the middle class the pillars of his campaign, and has drawn on his personal backstory for the credibility to address those issues.
The 42-year-old councilor is at ease speaking on race and class, equally comfortable in City Hall’s corridors of power or shaking hands along the toughest streets of his district, where he has lived nearly all his life.