Destiny Jackson is a believer, humanitarian, writer, speaker, and volunteer. Through her life's work, Destiny has become a luminary to many and an advocate for all-encompassing empowerment for children with parents in prison, criminal justice reform, and more. Aside from that, family and friends will tell you that Destiny has never forgotten her humble beginnings and the folks she has dedicated her life to helping.
On September 15, 1992, Destiny Jackson was born to teenage parents in the inner projects of Washington, D.C. Her biological father became incarcerated just 9 months before she was born. Born in the nation's capital during one of the most poverty-stricken epochs, Destiny and her mom were homeless at one point. Dedicating her life to public service and the greater good of humanity, Destiny has defied the many odds placed upon her.
"My dad has been in prison all my life. And I have weathered many storms. But in essence, God blessed my life so that it shines as a light of hope for you."
-Destiny R. Jackson
In 2000, Destiny became a homeschooled 5th-grade student. Today, Destiny highlights homeschooling as, "one of the best experiences of her life." In 2005, she earned membership into the Screen Actors Guild, the world's largest labor union for professional actors and actresses.
"I gained rhinoceros skin as a professional actress. You must be tenacious, observant, and true to yourself. The industry is full of rejection. Nonetheless, I learned a lot about myself and others along the way."
-Destiny R. Jackson
From the ages of 7 to 15 years old, Destiny was a professional actress and model. From 2001-2003, Destiny filmed Gods and Generals, starred in Maryland State Lottery and United Way commercials, and was a presenter for the American Architectural Foundation and Black Engineer of the Year Awards. She also recorded educational videos for the Success For All Foundation and JDG Communications. Destiny earned membership into the nation's largest labor union, SAG-AFTRA, in 2005.
Theatre wise, Destiny performed at The Arena Stage, The John F. Kennedy Center, and the Shakespeare Theatre. She starred as Maretha in The Piano Lesson, Zonia in Joe Turner 's Come and Gone, and Clarence's child in Richard III. In 2006, Destiny filmed season 4 of HBO's television series The Wire, as the role Crystal Judkins.
In 2010, Destiny ranked as a state finalist in the Miss Maryland Teen USA Pageant. Founded in 2010, Destiny launched an eco-friendly apparel line, Lotus Love Underground Mob and an online-community dedicated to informing the public about public relations, strategy and business called Jackson-Evans PR.
In 2007, Destiny auditioned for the New York Film Academy, performing scenes from "Salome" and "Mulebone." During the audition, the director told Destiny that she was amazed by her performance, but she thought Destiny was a facade. Destiny kindly rejected NYFA's acceptance letter. This was a defining moment that showed Destiny to continue striving for excellence. She grasped the basic principle that their is no one besides God that is the gateway to her success and happiness.
Spreading The Gospel
"Oh God is so good! We must praise our Lord of Lords and our King of Kings all the time. Continue to pray for our brothers and sisters turning their lives over to Christ. We are beacons of love and light. And those are big shoes to fill. And together, we will continue to emit light in times of darkness."
-Destiny R. Jackson
Later in 2010, Destiny began spreading the Gospel, spreading light and love and bringing folks to Christ. Some of Destiny's most valued ministries include topics on: ethics, wealth creation, modesty, virginity, beauty, health, prison reform, psalms, linguistics, and college.
Destiny prides herself on the basic principle that we all have a precious duty to show love to one another and the world we live in (John 13:34). As one interesting fact, she begins each morning with a prayer for her spiritual followers and communities from coast to coast.
University and Public Service Years
"I want you to never forget that small tokens of gratitude change the world. And even in times of adversity, exhibiting benevolence has always made my heart smile and fostered many blessings. It's priceless."
-Destiny R. Jackson
In August 2011, Destiny began college at American University in Washington, D.C. In 2012, she became one of the very few minority students to rank in the top 10% of her college class at American University. Later, she was inducted into the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the nation's premiere organization for high achieving students. By her sophomore year of college, Destiny Jackson made history as the world's first minority female student, with a parent in prison, and a descendant of sharecroppers to earn her way to becoming an alumna of some of society's most prestigious entities: The White House, Goldman Sachs, and Google.
Recognitions and Published Works
"My mother anchored the importance of education at a very early age. I honor her and my ancestors by excelling academically."
-Destiny R. Jackson
Destiny founded DestinyJackson Hair in 2012, bringing women of color closer to her break-through philosophy of growing hair naturally, without the use of harsh chemicals and damaging methods. In May 2013, Destiny published her first work—Virginity Vow, purity affirmations.
In 2013, she was rewarded and recognized by American University's Honors Program as an outstanding student for academic achievement and leadership. Later that year, Destiny dedicated over 580 hours of public service to the American people as a White House Intern.
In Spring 2014, Destiny earned Dean's list and Cum Laude latin honors. In June and November 2014, she served again as a Voters Election Judge during the Primary and General Gubernatorial Elections, assisting voters in the polling place. June 2014 gave rise to Destiny publishing her first children's book—Sleepy Sublime.
Achieving Dean's list once again in May 2015, Destiny excelled from the top 10% to the top 8% of American University's college class. This accomplishment gave rise to Destiny Jackson earning Magna Cum Laude.
In June 2015, Destiny published her second book—"The Destiny Jackson Hair Bible: 23 Commandments to Growing the Most Luxurious Hair."
In December 2015—during her first semester of her senior year—Destiny earned Dean's list and Magna Cum Laude.
On February 10, 2016, Destiny gained membership into the International Honors Society, Beta Gamma Sigma. Membership in Beta Gamma Sigma is the highest recognition a business student anywhere in the world can receive in a baccalaureate or post-baccalaureate program accredited by AACSB International.
One month later on March 22, 2016, Destiny was selected to present at American University's Honors Capstone Research Conference held on Wednesday, April 6, 2016. Destiny's capstone advisor and school identified her Capstone project as one of the most outstanding projects being completed in the Kogod School of Business. Destiny's Honors Capstone Project provided crisis management recommendations for Chipotle to regain consumer loyalty in response to the 2015-2016 E.coli outbreak crisis.
In April 2016, during the Presidential Primary elections, Destiny served during early voting and on Election Day, helping voters in her community.
On May 6, 2016, Destiny attended her Honors Recognition Ceremony during her senior year of college. During her last semester, Destiny earned Summa Cum Laude—the highest form of Latin Honors. For the 5th consecutive semester in a row, Destiny also earned Dean's list.
On Saturday, May 7, 2016, Destiny graduated from college Magna Cum Laude with University Honors—studying Finance, Management, and Public Relations.
During the 2016 Presidential Elections, Destiny served as an election judge, once again, assisting voters at the polls during early voting and on Election Day.
The Future is Bright
In essence, Destiny's life story has proved all the psychologists, sociologists, and scholarly researchers wrong who said that children with parents in prison will be nothing more than a statistic.
Destiny believes that every child or teenager with a parent in prison has unwavering potential to change the world. She's been driven by the basic principle that regardless of who you are or where you come from, your parents' pitfalls don't have to be your own. In February 2014, Destiny founded the Destiny Jackson Foundation to ensure that boys and girls who share the same story have the social, academic, and professional resources they need most to defy the odds placed upon them.
On June 10, 2016‚ Destiny walked 1 mile to support children with parents in prison. This event marked the Destiny Jackson Foundation’s first time celebrating International Awareness Day for children with incarcerated parents. For this event, the Destiny partnered with Fostering, Empowering, and Advocating Together for Children of Incarcerated Parents (F.E.A.T)—a Canadian non-profit organization supporting children affected by parental incarceration.
Friday, July 1, 2016 marked Destiny's publication genesis of grammar video lessons for students with parents in prison. In salience, students with parents in prison are 6x more likely to fall victim to the school-to-prison pipeline. And millions of American children are impacted by parental incarceration. In implication, we can infer that millions of our students are 6x more susceptible to enter the school-to-prison pipeline. Quite naturally, we want our kids with parents in prison to become assets to society—not another body in a prison cell.
On March 1, 2017, Destiny spoke at American University, shedding light on the ills of mass incarceration and living with a parent in prison.
As an oral advocate for the empowerment and education of children with parents in prison, Destiny will play a promising role in criminal justice and prison reform.
"I still can't believe the U.S. has the world's highest incarceration rate, with more than 2 million people behind bars. Just as eye-opening, around 5 million children have (or have had) a parent in prison. We can't wait any longer to take committed action."
-Destiny R. Jackson