Jacqueline Gillon is a native Clevelander from the Glenville area. She was born in 1956 to parents who became actively involved in the community. Her family moved from the Glenville neighborhood to East Cleveland when she was 9. She attended Chambers Elementary, Kirk Junior High, and Shaw High school. She remembers the Kennedy and King assassinations, the death of Bruce Klunder, and the Hough and Glenville riots. From Shaw she went to Hiram College where she got involved in student activism. She went to serve on the city commission of East Cleveland at the age of 23, did not do what was required of her appointment, was sued for violating the city charter and removed shortly afterward. She then won a seat on city council in 1987 and served until 1993 under two different mayors. From there she became involved with establishment of leadership academies (Neighborhood Leadership Cleveland) in the city of Cleveland (offered as a course at Cleveland State University) until a couple years ago, when she switched from being an employee to a consultant. She has a strong presence at Elizabeth Baptist Church off of East 55th Street.
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Interviews in this series were collected by undergraduate students at Cleveland State University under the supervision of Dr. Mark Souther, with funding from the Office of the Provost. The series contains interviews with pioneers of suburban residential integration and social activists who supported peaceful managed integration/desegregation and fair housing in Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights in the 1950s to 1970s.