Jackie Winters began her life-long interest in citizen involvement in public policy listening to her parents’ discussions around the table in Topeka, Kansas, where she was born, and later in Portland, Oregon where her family moved in 1941. She attended Portland Public Schools and continued her education through the Oregon University System’s Continuing Education coursework, with an emphasis on Intergovernmental Relations. She is a Flemming Fellow graduate.
She began her governmental service in 1959, at Oregon Health Sciences University in the medical records unit and later joined the staff of the Portland Model Cities Program. In 1969, she was recruited to be supervisor of the Office of Economic Opportunity’s New Resources Program at the request of Governor Tom McCall. In 1979, she was appointed Ombudsman, by Governor Victor Atiyeh. During this service, she helped create the Oregon Food Share Program, which grew in 2010, to include a statewide system of food banks serving most of Oregon’s neediest families.
In 1985, Jackie opened her first Jackie’s Ribs restaurant, in Salem. Over time, she and her family expanded the operations to include three restaurants and three franchises, but currently only catering services for special events are offered.
In 1998, voters of District 31 elected Jackie, as their State Representative, the first African-American Republican to achieve this honor. She was re-elected to this office in 2000. In 2002, 2006 and again in 2010, she was elected as State Senator for District 10.
Jackie has lived in Salem for 40 years. She was married in 1971, to Marc “Ted” Winters. In addition to her four adult sons, she also has a stepson, stepdaughter and ten grandchildren. Her beloved husband Ted, passed away August 26, 2008.
Jackie serves on numerous boards and commissions:
- Board of Directors of Goodwill Industries of OR
- Board of Directors of Yatima Group Fund, Member
- Board of Directors of Salem Chamber of Commerce, Member
- South Salem Rotary Club, Member
- Oregon Northwest Black Pioneers, Founding Member and Past President
- Oregon State Managers Association, Member
- Oregon Restaurant Association, Director
- National Federation of Independent Businesses, Member
- Guido Caldarazzo Methamphetamine Task Force, Co-Chair
Winters has received numerous awards and recognitions, including:
- Oregon Health Care Achievement 2005
- Oregonians for Food and Shelter Award 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007
- Family Building Blocks Most Valuable Players Award, 2007
- City of Salem Distinguished Service Award (awarded twice)
- United Way Outstanding Achievement Award
- United Way Gold Award
- Salem Keizer Schools Appreciation Award
- NAACP President’s Award for Advancing the Cause of Civil Rights in Oregon
- Willamette University Community Service Award
- Multi-Culture Law Students (awarded twice)
- International Women’s Who’s Who