Honoring Jesse J. Jossell, Jr.by Representative Bennie G. Thompson
Posted on 2013-02-28
in the house of representatives
Thursday, February 28, 2013
Mr. THOMPSON of Mississippi. Mr. Speaker, I rise to recognize a
remarkable veteran of the Korean Conflict from 1954-1957, Pastor Jesse
J. Jossell, Jr., of Marks, Mississippi.
[[Page E230]] Jesse was born in Coahoma County on September 5, 1935 to the late Jesse J. and Cordelia B. Jossell, Sr. His family later moved to Quitman County, Mississippi where he attended school and in May 1954 he graduated from Marks Industrial High School. He received his Associate of Arts Degree from Coahoma Junior College in May 1959. In 1961, he received his Bachelor of Science Degree from Jackson State College, now Jackson State University. He also attended Howard University in 1965. In 1969, he earned a Master of Science Degree in Natural Science from Oklahoma State University and later a Master of Education Degree in Educational Administration and Supervision in 1973.
From 1960 until 1973, Jesse Jossell worked for the Quitman County School District in Marks, Mississippi as a classroom science teacher and science supervisor before accepting a principal position at the Falcon Junior High School in 1973.
In 1973, Jesse Jossell was asked to seek the office of Superintendent of Schools in the upcoming State and County Elections in 1975. Just four years earlier, the leadership in the black community under the new voting rights law sought to test this new tool. Jesse by far was the most attractive candidate and offered the best opportunity to elect an African-American to a countywide position. For two years, voter registration was the order of the day. More than 1,500 African- Americans were added to the voter rolls by qualifying deadline. Although Jesse and the other black candidates were not elected, three years later he was elected the first African-American to the Quitman County Board of Supervisors.
Jesse Jossell was later called into the ministry, where he has served as Pastor of Holly Grove Missionary Baptist Church since 1984. Through his work as pastor, he has provided child care to working mothers, especially single low-income and those trying to better themselves by going to school.
Mr. Speaker, I ask my colleagues to join me in recognizing Pastor Jesse Jossell, Jr. for a life of dedication to bettering the lives of the least among us.