KEF Honors Dr. Jesse Jackson And Dr. Nancy Lee Sánchez-Badillo For Their Commitment To Inclusivity And Success

October 19, 2022

The Kaplan Educational Foundation (KEF), seeks to eliminate barriers to higher education for overlooked and underserved community college students.

In addition, developing them as leaders for the American workforce and their communities will present its 2022 Leadership Award to Dr. Jesse Jackson and Dr. Nancy Lee Sánchez-Badillo.

Jackson and Sánchez-Badillo will accept the Leadership Award at the Foundation’s annual benefit on October 26th in New York City.

The Award recognizes lifelong commitment to inclusivity and diversity, as well as the impact on enhancing academic excellence and promoting student access and success by strengthening resources around the whole student experience.

As Head of Product for Firmwide Employee Experience for Integrated Help at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Dr. Jackson oversees the global management and strategy development of this function, which focuses on modernization and improvement of the employee experience.

This globally distributed high-impact Integrated Help team supports more than 270,000 bank employees and retirees worldwide in addition to providing direct engagement to strategic vendors.

He currently serves as the Co-Chair to BOLD (Black Organization for Leadership Development) Business Resource Group.  Dr. Jackson has been with the firm for over 25 years, joining the bank via the firm’s Management Development Program after completing five years of active duty in the United States Navy.

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He has held other global roles including firmwide head of Learning and Career Experience for JPMorgan Chase plus several national leadership roles within both Commercial Banking and Business Banking, serving as Client Service Executive for both lines of business.

In addition to his work at JPMorgan Chase, Dr. Jackson continues to champion diversity and inclusion through his efforts as a Brooklyn International High School Teaching Entrepreneurship Reviewer and works with students to help develop business efforts in urban markets. He is also a recipient of the YMCA Black Achievers in Industry Award.

Dr. Sánchez-Badillo has over 22 years of experience providing greater access to higher education, improving the college experience, and fostering leadership among low-income, underrepresented and non-traditional students through collaborative partnerships and services that directly target factors affecting degree-attainment gaps.

As the founding Director of Academic Advisement and Student Development for the Kaplan Educational Foundation, Dr. Sánchez-Badillo was responsible for the design and implementation of the Kaplan Leadership Program (KLP) model.

KLP’s community college to four-year program model focuses on developing the whole student while preparing them for a lifetime of personal, financial, and socially conscious professional leadership.

In 2015, she took over the Kaplan Educational Foundation and continued to develop a track record of success, with scholars earning an 85% transfer rate and an 89% bachelor’s degree completion rate.

A 2014 National Hispanic Executive Leadership Fellow, Dr. Sánchez-Badillo completed an Executive Leadership Program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a Leadership Development Program at the Center for Creative Leadership.

She is currently the Chief Opportunity Officer at Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and continues to serve as a member of the Kaplan Educational Foundation Board of Directors and a strategic partner.

“Dr. Jackson and Dr. Sánchez-Badillo have been committed to expanding educational access and developing students from diverse backgrounds,” said Melissa Mack, Chairman of the Foundation and Chief Communications & HR Officer at global educational services company Kaplan, Inc. “Their leadership is an example for all of us working to eliminate barriers for our country’s next generation of high achievers and future leaders.”

It is beyond an honor to be recognized by an organization of the caliber of the Kaplan Educational Foundation due to its hard work and commitment to educational and economic equality,” said Dr. Jackson. “The work of the Kaplan Educational Foundation is central to uplifting our communities and building a more equitable and accessible economy for all through its investments in high-quality career-focused education programs.

“There is no greater honor than to be recognized by an organization that affirms that the talent, intellect, leadership, and compassion that resides in marginalized communities deserves recognition, investment, and development,” said Dr. Sánchez-Badillo. “KEF has reiterated that given the opportunity, they can excel in the most competitive environments and lead in their communities and professions. I am proud beyond words.”

KEF is an independent 501(c)(3) public charity, and through the Kaplan Leadership Program helps high-potential, low-income, and underrepresented community college students complete their associate degree, successfully transfer and go on to earn a four-year bachelor’s degree at the nation’s most highly-selective schools.

The program focuses on a holistic approach – providing extensive tutoring, academic advisement services, leadership and career training, stipends for living expenses, and other resources and support to help them expand their personal goals, and eventually attain leadership roles in their professions and communities.

Since its inception in 2006, the Kaplan Leadership Program has helped more than 100 Scholars gain admission to the country’s most competitive schools, including Yale, Stanford, Brown, Princeton, Amherst, Cornell, Mount Holyoke, Smith and many others.

Eighty-seven percent of KLP scholars earn a bachelor’s degree. Today, Scholars are practicing law and medicine, conducting scientific research, serving in business, education and engineering, and leading in government, and public and private industries.

The 2022 Annual Benefit celebrates KEF’s 16th year of removing obstacles to higher education and serves as the organization’s chief fundraising event. 

To attend or sponsor the event, please click here.

If you are interested in attending the event as a member of the media, please contact Valerie Silverman Kerr

The Kaplan Educational Foundation

The Kaplan Educational Foundation, a 501 3(c) nonprofit public charity, was initially established and supported by a generous endowment funded by Kaplan, Inc. executives with the idea of helping a small group of students in a big way. 

The Foundation provides high-potential, low-income students with academic and financial support and leadership training to raise their expectations for success and open doors to opportunities that will change their lives and communities.

For more information, please visit

Kaplan, Inc.

Kaplan, Inc. is a global educational services company that helps individuals and institutions advance their goals in an ever-changing world.

Our broad portfolio of solutions help students and professionals advance their education and careers, universities and educational institutions attract and support students, and businesses maximize employee recruitment, development, and advancement.

Stanley Kaplan founded our company in 1938 with a mission to expand educational opportunities for students of all backgrounds.

Today, thousands of Kaplan employees in 27 countries continue Stanley’s mission, working with students and professionals and 12,000 corporate and 4,000 school and university clients worldwide. Kaplan is a subsidiary of Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC).

Learn more at

Photo credit: 1) Dr. Nancy Sánchez-Badillo 2) Dr. Jesse Jackson.

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