Linda K. (Clarke) Jackson Hometown Pride Endowed Scholarship Established

Dow Ben--BS_Econ_and_FinanceCAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., April 8, 2014 – The Linda K. (Clarke) Jackson Hometown Pride Scholarship has been established through the Southeast Missouri University Foundation.

The friends and family of Linda K. (Clarke) Jackson made a $10,000 gift to establish the scholarship. The gift will be matched with an additional $10,000 through a University gift matching program.

The matching gift program is part of the Honoring Tradition – Inspiring Success Comprehensive Campaign through the Southeast Missouri University Foundation. This program allowed donors to make a minimum commitment of $5,000 to a maximum commitment of $10,000 through donation or pledge by March 1, 2014, that qualified for a $1-for-$1 match. The goal of the Campaign is to raise $40 million for students both today and tomorrow.

The renewable Linda K. (Clarke) Jackson Hometown Pride Scholarship will be awarded to a Southeast student who graduated from Cairo High School in Cairo, Ill. Second preference will be given to a student who is a permanent resident of Cairo, Ill. Students with permanent residency in Alexander County, Ill., will be granted third preference, and students with permanent residency in Pulaski County, Ill., will receive fourth preference. After which, any Southeast student is eligible to apply.  Recipients must have a minimum 2.0 grade point average. The University Scholarship Committee will select the recipient.

Linda Jackson was born March 28, 1961, in Cairo, Ill., to Peter J. and Sarah Jane Clarke and graduated from Cairo High School. After graduation, Jackson became employed at St. Mary’s Hospital in Cairo, Ill., where she met her husband, Willis Jackson.

Jackson’s beliefs in strong community involvement, instilled in her at a young age, manifested throughout her life in the Cairo community. For over 15 years, she was involved in planning and coordinating Cairo Riverboat Days and was a past president of Beta Sigma Phi. Jackson served on the Cairo City Council for more than 14 years where she was a councilwoman for the 4th ward and later become a councilwoman at large. During her tenure, Jackson became the first woman to preside over the Cairo City Council as Mayor Pro Tem. In 2010, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn appointed Jackson to the board of the Alexander-Cairo Port District, on which she served for more than three years. Though she never graduated from a four-year institution of higher learning, Jackson stressed the importance of a college education, especially to her two sons, Alex and Jacob.

Jackson was extremely devoted to her community and had a profound impact upon the City of Cairo. The friends and family of Linda K. (Clarke) Jackson established this scholarship to continue the legacy of hometown pride in which she fought so hard to build and to help inspire future leaders to invest in their hometown communities.

For additional information on the matching gift program, please contact the Southeast Missouri University Foundation at (573) 651-2203 or foundation@semo.edu.