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How One Man Fought For Equal Education In Northeastern NC

The James Henry Jones family.
Courtesy of film director Anna Jones (back row, second from left).
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The James Henry Jones family.

 James H. Jones made a living as a farmer in Northampton County and cemented a legacy as a community leader for equal education. His efforts pushed the school board to give African-American students more resources after the county failed to comply with standards set by the Brown v. Board of Education ruling. 

Jones eventually became the first black member of the school board in Northampton County and later the first black school board chairman in the state. His work is featured in the documentary “Chairman Jones: An Improbable Leader.” Host Frank Stasio talks with Anna Jones, James’s daughter who directed and produced the documentary, about her father’s work.

The documentary screens at the Cameo Art House Theatre in Fayetteville on Saturday, Oct.14 at 9 p.m. as a part of the Indigo Moon Film Festival. 

Charlie Shelton-Ormond is a podcast producer for WUNC. His fascination for audio storytelling and radio journalism began as a broadcast major at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He began his career as a reporter for Carolina Connection, UNC’s student-led radio news show, where Charlie’s work won multiple Hearst Journalism Awards.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.