A native of the state of Florida, Jessi relocated with her family to Richmond, VA in 2023. She obtained both a master’s of Science in Information and a bachelor’s of Science in Social Science Education from Florida State University. Her career began as a middle school social studies teacher in the Leon County School System (Tallahassee, FL) before transitioning into grant management for the Florida office of the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers federal grant program. Her foray into the CTE world began with the Division of Career and Adult Education, within the Florida Department of Education, where she spent two years as an Educational Policy Analyst for their Research & Evaluation team. She comes to Advance CTE after a stint as a Work-Based Learning Analyst with the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia working directly with the Virginia Talent + Opportunity Partnership. When not working to improve the Career Technical Education (CTE) landscape she can be found spending time with her husband and two sons, playing roller derby, or on the hunt for new adventures.
As a Senior Policy Associate, Jessi is responsible for directly supporting and advancing the Opportunity Gap Analysis Workshops through technical assistance and peer learning opportunities presented to participating states, and by providing customized technical assistance for states receiving individualized support. She also assists with Advance CTE’s state policy, equity, and data and research strategies by supporting state and local sites in designing and advancing high-quality and equitable career pathways. Contributing to strategies, plans, and the development of tools for advancing equity-focused technical assistance services for participating localities.