Dr. Sylvia Johnson Jones honored for community service

Sylvia Johnson Jones after getting her award Published February 27, 2024

When Dr. Sylvia Johnson Jones, executive director of the College of Lake County (CLC) Career and Job Placement Center (CJPC), went from North Chicago to Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, she always knew she would come back and help the community where she grew up. Her lifelong dedication to helping others led to her receiving the Drum Major Award for Community Service at the Waukegan Township annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Event.

The Drum Major Award is given annually to local community leaders and pastors for their integrity and contribution to the greater good.

“Being recognized for what I believe is my mission reinforces that what I’m doing is the right thing,” Johnson Jones said.

Johnson Jones is driven by her work to help underserved communities and people who may not have a voice. Coming from North Chicago, she always wanted to come back and be an example of success to others.

One way Johnson Jones serves her community is through her volunteer work on several boards which align with her personal mission. She serves on boards for the North Chicago School District 187, Lake County Health Department, Coalition to Reduce Recidivism and the Lake County Chamber of Commerce.

Other organizations Johnson Jones is involved in include The Links, Incorporated, a social service organization of prominent Black women in the United States, and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, an international service organization and the first intercollegiate historically Black sorority.

Johnson Jones’ position at CLC enhances her ability to help others. CJPC helps students get an early start in their career with internships and apprenticeships.

“I used to drive past CLC and tell myself that I was going to work there,” Johnson Jones said. “Impacting my community and working here go hand in hand. If I could do it all again, I’d do it for free. It brings me a lot of joy to know that I am impacting student lives through creating a vision that allows them to be career ready and hear about their success in the workforce.”