GSEP Mourns the Loss of Student Kingsley B. Jones

December 18, 2020  | 2 min read

The Graduate School of Education and Psychology is saddened to announce the passing of alumnus and present doctoral student Kingsley B. Jones (MA ’13) on Sunday, December 6, 2020. 

A dedicated, enthusiastic lifelong learner, Jones was a graduate of the MA in Social Entrepreneurship and Change program (Cohort 3) and a current student in the EdD in Organizational Leadership program. He earned his bachelor of science degree in management/economics from Fisk University in 1980.

A true change agent with a heart for justice, Jones was committed to servant leadership and generously gave of his time and talent to such causes. He envisioned a world where poverty would be a thing of the past and the disenfranchised would be valued, and he worked tirelessly to make his vision a reality. Recognizing education as the single most effective tool for improving the socioeconomic status of an individual and that of their community, Jones was passionate about partnering with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as a way of empowering Black students to pursue advanced degrees. As he championed economic success in the underserved community, he was often known to say, “Poverty is not a disease of the pocketbook. It is a disease of the mind and of the spirit.”

Jones inspired everyone, especially his colleagues, with his advocacy, leadership, and passion. Upon hearing of Jones' passing, Farzin Madjidi, associate dean of education, said, “This is a profound loss for our GSEP family, and he will be deeply missed.” Stephen Kirnon, program director of the MA in Social Entrepreneurship and Change program, remembers Jones most particularly for his dedication to the Economic Research Institute for Behavioral Change, which he founded, and his determination to help others succeed. This is clearly evident in another notable feature of his life’s work, the Men’s HuddleTM, a Saturday morning gathering with a focus on helping young Black men understand their value and uphold their positions as leaders, entrepreneurs, family members, and cornerstones of the community. 

Jones held positions on several boards including director of the NAACP - Community Economic Development Committee (Compton Chapter) and director of marketing and communications of the Los Angeles Adventist Academy, and he was an active member of the Black Barbershop Health Outreach Program. As an advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion, Jones was often invited to speak at institutions of higher education including Prairie View A&M University, Delaware State University, and Tuskegee University.

A virtual homegoing ceremony will be held to honor Jones' memory. More information will be shared as details are finalized.