Gerald Gregory Jackson, a brilliant psychologist, celebrated scholar, and loving family man passed away on February 15, 2021, at the age of 77.
Born in Harlem, New York City, Gerald was the only child of Charles "Buddy" Jackson and Ruby “Jackie” Harden. From early childhood, Gerald discovered the importance of hard work, the passion for effectuating change in the lives of the marginalized, and the joy of intellectual curiosity. These values would guide him throughout the rest of his life.
After graduating from Commerce High School in New York City, Gerald attended Howard University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Government. He then earned a master’s degree in Counseling from the University of Maine and completed a clinical psychology internship at New York University Medical Center, Bellevue Hospital. He also completed doctoral work in clinical psychology at Rutgers University, followed by two additional years of academic course work in environmental psychology at CUNY Graduate School.
Gerald was a proud and devoted member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Incorporated. He was initiated in April 1964 at Howard University (Xi Chapter), where he was affectionately known as “Smooth.”
Gerald would quickly become a pioneering scholar in the field of Black Psychology, writing numerous path-breaking books and articles and becoming a committed member of the Association of Black Psychologists. A gifted educator and administrator, he directed educational programs at Yale University, Kean College, Essex County Community College, and the Poland Springs Job Corps Center for Women in Maine. He taught at Cornell University, where he was lovingly referred to as “Campus Dad” and “Pops,” Brooklyn College, Seton Hall University, Medgar Evers College, and Rutgers University, designing and teaching courses such as “The Black Family,” “Cross-Cultural Counseling,” “Psychology of Racism,” and “Abnormal and Psychology of the Urban Experience.” Gerald also served on numerous editorial boards and as a member of the Essex County Mental Health Board.
As founder and president of New Arena Consultants from 1979 to 1998 and The Center for the Advancement of Diunital Thinking and Africana Helping Conception from 2006 to the present, Gerald was at the forefront of the diversity and inclusion (D&I) movement, providing education, training, and development services to approximately 150 corporations, educational, mental health, and government institutions. Despite his many accolades, his professional success is best marked by the international community of students, mentees, and colleagues who celebrate his brilliance and generosity.
Gerald is survived by Ingrid S. Hill, his devoted life partner of four decades, three children, Monique Jackson-Ivy, Melanie Jackson, and Melissa Valle, son-in-law, Lawrence R. Ivy, Jr., and a host of friends.
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