Remarkable Women: South Bay woman puts the soul in soul food

Bay Area

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON) — KRON4 is profiling four remarkable Bay Area women as part of a nationwide series by our parent company “Nexstar Broadcasting” to honor amazing achievements ahead of Women’s History Month in March.

We will pick one winner from our four remarkable women to get an all expense paid trip to the Mel Robbins’ show in New York City.

On Tuesday, we highlighted a South Bay woman who is touching souls with her compassion and cooking.

KRON4’s Rob Fladaboe introduces us to Jacquelyn Jackson.

The next time you are craving soul food, may we suggest Jackie’s Place on North 6th Street in San Jose.

The proprietor, Jacquelyn Kackson, opened the wildly popular eatery a year ago.

“My catering business had grown and I thought I should get a place of my own,” Jackson said.

The menu reads like soul’s food’s greatest hits with some recipes handed down from Jackie’s Texas-raised family.

“My uncles Greg’s ribs, my momma’s sweet potato pie… I just tried to improsive some and hope people liked them.”

Customers had a lot to say about Jackie’s.

“I feel guilty coming here, it’s that good.”

“Mmmm, fantastic, really good.”

“Really good man.”

The food speaks for itself but it doesn’t tell the whole story. Success was elusive.

Clean and sober for 30 years after a long battle with drugs, Jackie also beat cancer and stepped in when her sister died young.

“With a lot of joy in my heart, we took on the kids, my husband and I, we raised her three along with our five and so I am a mother of eight,” she said.

A woman who knows her way around the kitchen, Jackie makes sure no one leaves here hungry — and that includes the homeless who often come to her door.

“At the end of the night when we have leftovers, there’s a couple of areas in the neighborhood and the guys rely on us to bring over ribs or brisket or whatever we have left,” she said.

Gracious to a fault, Jackie is making a difference in the community. 

She is serving up compassion along with that soul food with emphasis on the soul.

“I am humbly honored that somebody thinks the things I have done for my family and my community are worth recognizing,” she said. “I do the things I do because they need to be done.”

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