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J00908 Summary:

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J00908 Text:

Senate Resolution No. 908
        MOURNING  the  death  of  Jacqueline Odessa Baker,
        dedicated  educator,  distinguished   citizen,   and
        devoted member of her community
  WHEREAS, There are certain outstanding members of our community who,
through  their selfless commitment and dedication, have served to better
the quality of life in our community and have had a measurable  positive
impact  on  the  lives of its residents; Jacqueline Odessa Baker was one
such individual; and
  WHEREAS, It is with  profound  sorrow  and  deep  regret  that  this
Legislative  Body records the passing of Jacqueline Odessa Baker, noting
the significance of her purposeful life and accomplishments; and
  WHEREAS, Jacqueline Odessa Baker of Yorktown Heights, New York, died
on Monday, June 13, 2022, at the age of 62; and
  WHEREAS, Jacqueline Odessa Baker was born on  August  26,  1959,  in
Bedford-Stuyvesant  Brooklyn,  at  Kings  County Hospital to Norvell and
Olivia Baker; strong-willed, determined, and independent, she grew up to
become a woman of family and community with a sharp wit and an exuberant
personality; and
  WHEREAS, With a keen sense  of  focus  and  passion  for  education,
Jacqueline  Odessa  Baker  was  a successful student; she and her sister
were part of the first cohort  of  students  to  be  bussed  from  their
majority  Black  neighborhood  to  attend  newly  integrated  schools in
Borough Park Brooklyn; she was a scholar from elementary  school  at  PS
230, Montauk Junior High School, to Evander High School; and
  WHEREAS,  Jacqueline  Odessa  Baker  continued  her education at the
College of Mount Saint Vincent where she  received  a  degree  in  Early
Childhood  Education  before  enrolling  in  Hunter  College to pursue a
Master's degree in Education; and
  WHEREAS, This extraordinary woman began her illustrious career as  a
special  education  teacher in the City of Manhattan; after a few years,
she landed a position in the Yonkers Public School  District  where  she
remained a dedicated educator for 35 years; and
  WHEREAS,   Beyond   the   classroom,  Jacqueline  Odessa  Baker  was
passionate about community engagement and volunteerism; she  was  active
in  the  Yonkers  Federation  of  Teachers,  the  New  York State United
Teachers Civil and Human Rights Committee, and the NAACP; and
  WHEREAS, Furthermore, she  served  as  a  district  leader  for  the
Yorktown  Democratic  Party, and as the Vice-President for the Peekskill
Chapter of the Westchester Black  Women's  Political  Caucus;  she  gave
tirelessly  of  her  time  and  energies  to  important causes, and this
advocacy only increased during her retirement; and
  WHEREAS, Perhaps her greatest advocacy work was in the  founding  of
her  non-profit,  the Westchester Sickle Cell Disease Outreach, in 2019;
under her  able  leadership  as  CEO,  this  vital  organization  brings
awareness  and  support  for  sickle  cell disease patients and families
living in Westchester County where they can learn  from  each  other  to
build  their  strength,  body, and mind to live longer, healthier lives;
she was honored globally for her tireless efforts to raise  sickle  cell
awareness; and
  WHEREAS, In her free time, Jacqueline Odessa Baker enjoyed traveling
to  new  places  and  bringing  back  a  refrigerator  magnet  from each
destination; she also enjoyed visiting new restaurants and sampling  new
cuisines; her love for films was infectious; affectionately known as Ms.
Pottery  Barn,  she  loved to decorate her home, carefully selecting art
and knick-knacks that represented her taste and culture; and
  WHEREAS, Jacqueline Odessa Baker was a  collector  of  memories  who
dedicated  time  to  photography and assembling photo albums filled with
the  precious  memories  of  family  and  friends;   she   truly   loved
passionately and furiously, always showing up for her family and friends
in  ways both known and unknown; Jacqueline lived a full life on her own
terms; and
  WHEREAS, Jacqueline Odessa  Baker  is  survived  by  three  sisters,
Loretta  Halyard,  Janet  Rivers, and Nadine Baker; two sons, Norvell P.
Davis  and  Khalil  K.  Davis  (Theresa  S.  Thames);  and  one  beloved
grandchild,  Layla  N.    Davis;  as  well as a host of nieces, nephews,
cousins, and friends; and
  WHEREAS,  Jacqueline  Odessa  Baker's  infinite   selflessness   and
benevolence will shine on through her family's vivid and happy memories;
her  insight  and strength will forever serve as a beacon of love, light
and hope to the countless lives she touched; and
  WHEREAS, Armed with a humanistic spirit and imbued with a  sense  of
compassion,  Jacqueline  Odessa  Baker leaves behind a legacy which will
long endure the passage of time and will remain as a  comforting  memory
to  all  who  were  privileged  to  have known and loved such an amazing
woman; she will be deeply missed and truly merits the  grateful  tribute
of this Legislative Body; now, therefore, be it
  RESOLVED,  That  this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
mourn the death of Jacqueline Odessa Baker, and to express  its  deepest
condolences to her family; and be it further
  RESOLVED,  That  a  copy  of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be
transmitted to the family of Jacqueline Odessa Baker.
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