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A Great Man Will be Missed


Leonard Brooks Jackson

“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven….

Ecclesiastes 3:1

A TIME TO BE BORN…Leonard Brooks Jackson was born August 13, 1946 in Jacksonville, Florida to the late Lonnie Mae Jackson and was raised by his maternal grandmother, the late Willie Ann Jackson.

A TIME TO GAIN…Leonard B. Jackson was nurtured in a Christian home by Christian parents.  He was baptized at the State Temple Church of God in Christ.  Through the Sunday School and Y.P.W.W., Young Leonard embraced his faith, and started on a life-long walk with God.  He learned the tenets of Christianity and the joy of servicing the Lord under his then pastor, the late Bishop Wales R. Nesbitt, Sr., and his son, Bishop Samuel P. Nesbitt, who became his Godfather.  His joy in serving the Lord and his love for serving mankind would abide with him his entire life.  Leonard attended the public schools of Duval County, Jacksonville, Florida where he lettered in two sports at New Stanton Senior High School.

A TIME TO LOVE…Leonard B. Jackson was married to Micheline C. Jackson and to this union two children were born, Lynnette Michelle and Cheryl Yvette.  Leonard supported his children in their endeavors and encouraged their academic and professional success.  Even in adulthood, the girls frequently sought his wise counsel and Godly judgment as they started their own families and made their own marks as professionals and leaders in their communities.  To Ronald and Lovelle, his sons, who have brought unconditional love and a genuine commitment to Cheryl and Lynnette and the children.  In his later years, grandchildren Carter and Chloe brought Leonard equal pride and joy in their academic and social success.  

A TIME TO BUILD UP… Leonard B. Jackson began his career serving in the military as a member of the Third Infantry Division in Wurzburg, Germany, serving in the special services division.  After the military, Leonard spent the rest of his career in education and service to his community.  He was well prepared for the work following his matriculations at Gibbs Junior College in St. Petersburg, Florida in 1965, with an Associates of Arts degree, and his Bachelors of Science degree in 1967 from Central State University, and a Master of Arts degree from Cleveland State University in 1976 in Administration and Supervision.

A TIME TO PLANT… Leonard B. Jackson’s career as an educator in 1970 started at Patrick Henry Junior High School, as a physical education teacher and coach.  Leonard, in 1975 became the Head Baseball and Assistant Basketball Coach at Glenville High School.  And in 1979, Leonard became the Head Basketball Coach at West Technical High School.  These appointments and responsibilities prepared him to assume his role as “The Commissioner” of Interscholastic Athletics and Student Activities for the past thirty years.  Leonard was responsible for directing, supervising and coordinating sixteen sports in senior high schools and seven sports in K-8, and a budget of $4.25 million dollars.  He was responsible for majority district wide priorities to upgrade athletic facilities, establishing a more equitable procedure for hiring officials to work district athletic contests, with sincere interest in minority representatives – further providing guidance and support to district administrators in the area of budget preparation, scheduling, selecting of coaches and transportation.

A TIME TO REAP…Leonard B. Jackson, distinguished not only as a teacher, coach, commissioner, but as a servant to his community.  Leonard served as a member Northeast District Athletics Board, President, Ohio High School Athletic Association, Board of Directors, President of Council for Economic Opportunities of Greater Cleveland, Northeastern Ohio Chapter of the National Football Foundation Board of Directors, Former Chairman, Board of Trustees of the Olivet Institutional Baptist Church, member of the Leadership Cleveland Class of 1988, a member of the Cleveland Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Prince Hall Grand Lodge Ecclesiastes #120, El Hasa Temple #28 Past Imperial Potentate and Bezaleel Consistory #15 and Sovereign Grand Inspector General of the United Supreme Council of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry Prince Hall Affiliation – Northern Jurisdiction, U.S.A., Inc.

A TIME TO GATHER STONES…Leonard B. Jackson, ultimately retired from Cleveland Metropolitan School District serving forty-nine years in education and thirty-seven years as Athletic Commissioner.  He readily shared his time, talent and treasures for the building of God’s kingdom.  The joy of his salvation was never diminished, even during his illness.  Leonard was the recipient of many outstanding awards:  Leonard was inducted into the Gibb’s Junior College Athletic Hall of Fame in St. Petersburg, Florida; The Thurgood Marshall Outstanding Alumni Award, The Walter Burke Life Time Achievement Award, The East High Gymnasium named “Leonard B. Jackson” Gymnasium; East 117th Street renamed “Leonard B. Jackson Way,” presented The Key to the City of Cleveland in 2005 by Mayor Jane Campbell, presented the James A. Naismith Meritorious Service Award, Athletic Director of the Year of Northeast Ohio, OIAA (Ohio Interscholastic Athletic Association); “Coach of the Year” Cleveland East Senate Baseball League in 1977 and 1978.  Leonard’s most outstanding accomplishment was to have served as Commissioner, where his high school teams won twenty-one state championships during his illustrious career:  Collinwood (9), Glenville (6), John Adams (2), John Marshall (2), James F. Rhodes (1) and East Technical (1).

49 Years in Education

50 Years in Masonry (as of August, 2019)

Traveled to 49 of the 50 United States (excluding Alaska)

47 Years of Marriage (as of August 26, 2019)

A Legacy well spent…A Life well lived…A Race well run.

A TIME TO DIE…On Thursday, April 30, 2020, Leonard B. Jackson resigned his commissions from the church at Olivet to join The Church Triumphant. There, Leonard B. Jackson joins his mother and grandmother in that “Land of pure delight, where saints immortal reign.”  He now enjoys Peace, A Peace that surpasses all understanding.  He leaves to mourn his passing, his wife Micheline, daughter’s Lynnette Crenshaw (Lovelle) and Dr. Cheryl Johnson (Ron) and his grandchildren Carter Ryan and Chloe Renee; a host of cousins:  Mrs. Grace Cullins (deceased), Mary Ella Cullins (deceased), Dr. Henry B. Starkes (Vivian), Myra Starkes, Brenda Shackleford,  Koya F. Graham, Tynia Shackleford.  The Brooks’ Family of:  Arthur Brooks (deceased), Al Brooks (deceased), Marian Brooks-Brown, George Brooks, Mildred Brooks (deceased), Ronald Brooks (deceased), Roger Brooks, Harriet Brooks (deceased), Beverly Brooks, Judith Brooks-Huggins, Verna Gail Brooks-Mobley, and Angela Brooks.  Students and former athletes will greatly miss his presence.

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