2017 Nassau BOCES Education Partner Award Honoree
The Late Honorable Judy Jacobs
Legislator, Nassau County
Renowned Nassau County Legislator Judy Jacobs began her career as a teacher and remained an educator her entire life, teaching people to work together and to respect one another. A fierce advocate for public education, Ms. Jacobs was continually engaged with her constituent school districts and left every one of her schools with a legacy of caring and giving.
Ms. Jacobs visited the schools regularly to attend homecoming, celebrate student achievement, cut ribbons at groundbreaking ceremonies, speak about the value of education and commend teachers and students alike on the good work they were doing. She made a point of being a part of anything that involved children, whether attending the annual plantings in the children’s garden or simply reading to young students.
Ms. Jacobs worked tirelessly to raise revenue in support of the schools, funding everything from educational technology to playground equipment and bleachers. A regular panelist at the annual PTAsponsored Legislative Breakfast, Ms. Jacobs was always open to hearing about the needs of her schools.
She forged a relationship between Northwell Hofstra Medical School and her districts, giving secondary students the opportunity to work with doctors and medical students. She taught civics at the high schools, discussing the role and responsibilities of the government, as well as the importance of voting and being an active citizen. She invited students to sit in legislative chamber, giving them a real-world, hands-on experience with government.
A strong proponent of early childhood education, Ms. Jacobs founded the Nassau County Childcare Commission, ensuring that every child receives the Honorees best possible social and educational experience. She was also an advocate of student safety and fought for additional stop signs, crossing guards and traffic lights.
Ms. Jacobs was the first woman to serve as Presiding Officer of the Nassau County Legislature. In that role, she helped to form the Nassau Interim Finance Authority, bringing the county out of a fiscal crisis. She was honored as a Lifetime Member of the Plainview-Old Bethpage PTA Council.
“Nassau County Legislator Judy Jacobs was the consummate politician, education advocate and human being,” wrote her award nominator. “She was a woman with a mission: She strove to make Nassau County a place where people wanted to live and work. It was her calling; it was her passion; and it is now a part of her legacy.”