“I came to the Center for Neighborhood Technology to deal with the issue of transportation. How do you provide transportation options to people? How do you make transportation that is affordable, transportation that is nonpolluting, transportation that will reduce impact on household budgets?”
~ Jacquelyne D. Grimshaw (interview for The HistoryMakers A2003.001)
Over the decades, Jacky has learned when and how to successfully work for change in the transportation sector, bringing her lived and professional experiences together and applying them to political, policy, and practical problems. Her advocacy helped inspire:
U-PASS, which makes public transportation accessible to college students
the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), the award-winning metropolitan planning organization
IGO, the first Chicago nonprofit carsharing service
the Elevate Equitable Transit Oriented Development coalition
To name just a few!
She can recognize opportunities in technical public programs, and build them into innovative solutions for people. The next stage in her journey is to provide other exceptional women of color with the essential skills they need to lead transportation policy into an equitable future.
Representation is essential to better decision-making. In 2018, Streetsblog Chicago profiled Jacky, and asked her how she dealt with being an African-American woman in a field historically dominated by white men. “One of the crucial things that those of us outside of Washington advocated for was public involvement in transportation planning,” she told the interviewer. “If it’s going to affect you, then you need to know about it, and you need to be able to say ‘yes, no, maybe so,’ right?”
That’s the kind of policymaking the Jacky Fund will help to support. For the last 30 years, Grimshaw has been at CNT developing the skills and a deep base of knowledge, experience, and connections that have changed transportation policy. Over the years she generously, but informally, shared her skills with other women of color.
The Jacky Fellows program is intended to more formally capture and share her knowledge by creating a structured opportunity for her and others she has influenced at CNT to mentor Fellows (who have completed graduate degrees) and interns (who are currently graduate or undergraduate students).
The Fellows Program will begin to create a recognized pipeline of well-trained and educated younger women of color who can expand the influence of the approach Jacky has developed over many decades.
If you have questions or would like to arrange to support the Jacky Fund, please contact Bridget Torres, Btorres@cnt.org or 312-278-4800.