By DASCHELL M. PHILLIPS
Kenwood Academy High School Principal Gregory Jones was selected to the 2014 program of Leadership Greater Chicago Fellowship. Jones was the only Chicago Public Schools employee to be selected this year.
The Leadership Greater Chicago Fellowship program, which has been in place since 1983, selects leaders from various companies, firms, organizations and government institutions to examine issues including education, race and ethnic relations, crime and healthcare.
The fellows will begin the program with a two-day retreat in mid-September and throughout the year visit communities, schools and hospitals to speak with industry leaders to learn about what is being done in various problem areas. The fellowship year will end with another two-day retreat in June.
“Participating in this program will give [Kenwood] access to the smartest minds in this city and allow us to expand what we do,” said Jones, who was nominated by fellowship alums Bill Gerstein, former school principal and owner of now-closed grocery business Mr. G’s, and Janice Jackson, principal at Westinghouse College Prep High School. “It will open us up to social and possibly financial resources.”
Before becoming principal at Kenwood, 5015 S. Blackstone Ave., Jones, who has been an educator since 1997, was assistant principal at Westinghouse College Prep High School, 3223 W. Franklin Blvd. Having first started a career in business, Jones switched industries and began his career in education at Dunbar High School, 3000 S. King Dr., as the girl’s basketball and volleyball coach. He became the accounting, computer technology, world studies teacher and education-to-careers coordinator until 2007 when he became assistant principal at Marconi Elementary Community Academy, 230 N. Kolmar Ave.
Jones has won awards including the Dunbar Vocational Academy Alumni Association Exemplary Service Award and the Suave Performance Award and the Suave Drive Award. He was selected to help with curriculum design changes with the City Colleges of Chicago and also selected by Chicago Public Schools and Deloitte to design an enrichment program for gifted students interested in careers in business and finance.
In order for Jones to participate in the program he must receive sponsorship from Chicago Public Schools. Jones said he received a letter of congratulations from Barbara Byrd-Bennett, which indicates the school system will offer its support.