|Name||Jon P. Jennings|
, Indiana , United States
|| October 02, 1962
|Last Modifed||Barack O-blame-a|
Dec 02, 2004 06:34pm
|Info||Modest Beginnings in Indiana |
Jon was born and raised in Richmond, Indiana. He is the son of Alice Jennings, a single mother who supported Jon and his sister Beth by working the third shift as a Steelworker at the local Alcoa plant. Jon credits his mother with instilling the Hoosier values of hard work and fairness that has been a part of his life wherever he has gone in this world. Jon was the first in his family to graduate from high school, much less go to college.
Indiana University and the Indiana Pacers
Jon's journey began during his sophomore year at Indiana University when he was hired by basketball coach Bob Knight to serve as student manager. It was in this position that Jon realized the full extent of his love for the game of basketball.
While still in school at Indiana, Jon was hired by the new owners of the Indiana Pacers to serve as scout and video coordinator for the Indiana Pacers. While with the Pacers he had the opportunity to learn the game of professional basketball from Donnie Walsh, George Irvine and others.
The Boston Celtics
Jon stayed with the Pacers through the 1985 season, until he met K.C. Jones, the vaunted coach of the Boston Celtics, who asked Jon to join his staff in Boston. Jon became an assistant coach and scouting coordinator for the Boston Celtics in 1990, coaching the likes of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish and Reggie Lewis. He has worked for the team in several different capacities for many years including as scout/video coordinator for the 1986 World Champion Celtics. Jon also served as an Assistant Coach in the 1991 All Star game in Charlotte, NC. He currently serves as the Midwest collegiate scout for the team.
Public Service in Washington, D.C.
In 1997, as the Celtics organization was reorganized, Jon left professional sports to join the public sector and to serve his country. Jon was one of fifteen people selected for the prestigious White House Fellowship. He served in the Office of Cabinet Affairs from 1997-1998 under Thurgood Marshall, Jr. After the completion of his fellowship, Jon remained at the White House as Senior Assistant to the Cabinet Secretary and Director of Policy Coordination from 1998-1999. In his work at the White House, Jon acted as liaison to the President's Initiative on Race, labored on Social Security reform, and served as White House liaison to numerous Cabinet agencies. He also developed the President Clinton's Town Hall on Race and Sports and created the President's Public Service Announcement on racial reconciliation that was broadcast during the Super Bowl in 1998.
U.S. Department of Justice and Working with Congress
In early 1999, Jon was asked to join the U.S. Department of Justice where he served as Acting Assistant Attorney General and Principal Deputy Attorney General for the Office of Legislative Affairs. He served from April 1999 to June 2000. In both positions, Jon was the Department's primary liaison to the Congress. He was responsible for developing and coordinating the legislative agenda for the Department of Justice and directing the agency's relationship with the Congress. Jon was able to work with Congress and pass several pieces of legislation that has made a difference in the lives of many Americans.
Team Harmony - Celebrating Diversity with our Young People
In addition to his professional work, Jon is the co-founder and past president of the Team Harmony Foundation. Now in its tenth year, Team Harmony draws several thousand young people together in celebration of diversity and to rally against racism and hatred. Team Harmony has been recognized as one of the top organizations addressing the issues of bigotry and discrimination in this country.
Jon constantly strives to stay current in all aspects of youth development. He has traveled to Bosnia-Herzegovina to conduct basketball clinics and has served on the boards of numerous organizations working with young people.
Jon lives in Newburgh with his wife, Amy, and their new daughter. Baby Abigail was born in November!