Barbara Jessie-Black

Leap Ambassador Profile

 

Profile

Name

Barbara Jessie-Black

Affiliation

Executive Director, PTA Thrift Shop

Location

Durham, NC

Biography

Born 56 years ago in Berlin, West Germany, Barbara lived overseas until the age of 16, when her father’s last military tour brought the family to Ft. Gordon, GA. Barbara received her BBA from Augusta University in Augusta, GA, before moving to North Carolina where she has lived since. During her 15-year career as a retail manager with a national retail chain, Barbara received her MBA from Meredith College, in Raleigh, NC and became co-founder of a not for profit organization whose mission it is to search for innovative ways to achieve socio-economic equalities in communities through holistic and entrepreneurship-based education, to include education in “21st Century Jobs” technology and the STEM model.

Currently, Barbara is the Executive Director of the PTA Thrift Shop, Inc., a 67- year old organization, whose mission it is to enrich lives by building collaborative partnerships and transforming charitable donations into educational and community investments. She is also active in both the communities in which she lives and works, by serving on several boards and volunteering her time to causes close to her heart, which include workforce and economic development, access to health care and other issues in the social justice space. Barbara considers herself a “life-long student” of all things holistic and spiritual, with emphasis on how those concepts influence one’s activism. She is fluent in German, a yoga enthusiast, and includes in her spiritual practice daily meditation.

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