Jackie was born and raised in Pasadena, Texas. She received her Bachelor's degree in Education from Sam Houston State University in 1977 and went on to get her Master's degree in Education Diagnostics at the University of Houston in 1984. Jackie taught regular and special education for seven years in Baytown, Texas. In the fall of 1984, she moved to Stavanger, Norway, where she went to set up the Special Education Department at the Stavanger American School. In 1985 Jackie moved to Cairo, Egypt, where she taught at the Cairo American School. While on a weekend holiday trip, she experienced a terrorist attack on Egypt Air #648. Jackie was shot execution style in the head with a .38 caliber revolver in one of the world's most dramatic and deadly hijackings. As a result of this head injury, Jackie continues to face challenges with emotional, physical, and learning disabilities. She has used her nine years expertise in special education to train and rehabilitate herself. Jackie's current residence is in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She speaks to businesses, organizations, and associations on a full-time basis. She also speaks to school districts and colleges on motivational issues as well as educational issues pertinent to teachers and students.