About Kira

Kira school photoFour years ago, Kira ran for the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education firmly committed to the belief that every child deserves the opportunity to attain an excellent education. As the daughter of a single mother who often made sacrifices to ensure she attended the very best schools, she understands many of the challenges families who want more for their children face. Having grown up in an inner city neighborhood, when she became a teacher, she felt an even greater responsibility to ensure the 4th graders she taught received a great education.

Kira graduationKira has spent the last fifteen years as a committed leader and educator in our community. She has experience as a classroom teacher, a school administrator, a non profit executive and has spent the past four years working hard to advance state-wide policies that give all our students more opportunities to reach their full potential.

She knows firsthand: all our students have the potential to achieve at the highest levels, enter the workforce prepared to succeed throughout our state, and to compete nationally and globally.

Public Service

District 2 Representative, Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) – Elected official representing 400,000 Louisiana residents across 8 parishes on 11 person board. The Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) is the administrative body for all Louisiana public elementary and secondary schools; it also performs certain administrative functions for the state’s non-public elementary and secondary schools. BESE adopts regulations and enacts policies governing the operations of those schools under its jurisdiction, and exercises budgetary oversight of their educational programs and services.

District B Representative, New Orleans Recreation and Development Commission (NORDC)– Appointed by New Orleans Mayor Landrieu and City Council to represent Council District to be a member of a twelve-person Commission responsible for crafting and implementing the vision, direction, and strategy of the city’s largest department, serving 300,000 New Orleans residents and 70,000 children


Honors and Affiliations

Time 100, 2015

Selected by Time Magazine of one of one- hundred most influential people in the world because of contributions to the field of education

New Orleans Alliance for Diversity and Excellence, Innovator Award, 2014

Recognized for civic leadership and outstanding service to schools

Annual Women Worth Watching Award, Diversity Journal, 2013

Award celebrating the achievements and personalities of leading women executives, nominated by peers and mentors. The primary criteria for inclusion are the individual’s attainment of a senior executive management position, or be a member of the board of directors, or report to the president or CEO of the organization (business, educational or government institution, military, etc.), and have distinguished herself in her career or chosen field.

Teach For America, Peter Jennings Alumni Excellence Winner, 2012

Award granted annually from Teach For America to one top alum or group of alumni, from over 50,000, that exemplify leadership, and unprecedented results in the field of education.

Aspen Institute Education Entrepreneurship Fellowship, 2010; Aspen Moderator, 2013

One of twenty-four education entrepreneurs selected through national nomination process to go through rigorous two-year leadership seminar intended to build leadership capacity of field; Then selected at completion of fellowship to participate in moderator cohort, responsible for training future fellows.

New Orleans Young Leadership Council Role Model Award, 2010

One of twenty New Orleans civic leaders honored for exemplary community service and leadership

New Orleans City Business Woman of the Year, 2009

One of thirty New Orleans women selected for demonstrated results and outstanding leadership in business

New Orleans Alliance for Diversity and Excellence, Innovator Award, 2014

Recognized for civic leadership and outstanding service to schools


Features/Articles

Kira Orange Jones: All Children Deserve the Opportunity to Achieve, Time Magazine, Shaping Our Future (2015)
http://time.com/3957701/kira-orange-jones-teach-for-america-education/

Ten People Who Are Changing Education Today – And Will Be 10 Years from Now (2013)

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/sarameads_policy_notebook/2013/06/ten_people_who_are_changing_education_today–and_will_be_10_years_from_now.html

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/sarameads_policy_notebook/2013/07/young_education_leader_kira_orange_jones.html?qs=kira+orange+jones

Diversity Journal (2013)
http://www.womenworthwatching.com/

Louisiana Magazine (2012)
http://www.myneworleans.com/Louisiana-Life/January-February-2013/Louisianians-of-the-Year/index.php?cparticle=5&siarticle=4

Harvard Ed. Magazine (2009)
http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news_events/ed/2008/winter/features/orange_jones.html

Time Magazine (2008)
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1659767,00.html