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Jacqueline Easley McGhee

A native of Des Moines (Roosevelt high school graduate), Jacquie is a graduate of Carleton College located in Northfield, Minnesota.  She is Director, Community & Diversity Services for Mercy Medical Center. In 2014, Jacquie was elected Chair of the City of Des Moines Planning and Zoning Commission. (First African American female)

Her vast leadership experience includes the following:

  • President, Des Moines Schools Board of Education-First African American Female 1993

  • Chair, Central Iowa Regional Workforce investment Board-First African American and Female- 2008

  • Chair, Des Moines Metropolitan Authority Board of Trustees-First African American -1990

  • Chair, Greater Des Moines Partnership Diversity Council

  • Co-Chair, Sister Build; Habitat for Humanity

  • President, YWCA Board of Directors-First African American 1988

  • Member, American Heart Association National board-diversity committee   


Elected in 1990, Jacquie was the first African American female to serve on the Des Moines School Board, the largest school district in Iowa.  She completed two terms and was unanimously appointed by the School Board in 2000 to fill a vacancy.  In 2010, Jacquie was appointed by Governor Chet Culver to the newly reorganized Regional Workforce Investment Board and was elected Chair at the first meeting. Jacquie served as a member of the Drake University Board of Trustees from 1996 through 2009. During that time she was Vice-Chair of the Academic Affairs Committee and co-chaired the 1999 Inauguration of President David Maxwell. She was a member of the diversity leadership council of the national board of directors for the American Heart Association.  Jacquie is a past President of I’ll Make Me A World in Iowa.


Other volunteer positions include Vice Chair of Des Moines University Community Advisory Council, the Tai Dam Village Association board, the Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity Board, and the Iowa Supreme Court Grievance Commission.  Jacquie is also a trustee of the Watson Powell, Jr. and Cowles Foundation.

Jacquie was a 19 year trustee of the Des Moines Metropolitan Transit Authority (now DART) where she chaired the Board twice. She has also served as Chair of the Diversity Council of the Greater Des Moines Partnership and Vice Chair of Des Moines University Community Advisory Council. Her community volunteer experience is vast including the Tai Dam Village Association board, the Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity Board, and the Iowa Supreme Court Grievance Commission, United Way of Central Iowa Board, Young Women’s Christian’s Association Board of Directors, Child Care Association of Greater Des Moines, and Willkie House, and the Roosevelt High School Foundation. 


Jacquie was inducted in the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame by Governor Terry Branstad and Lt. Governor Reynolds in August, 2011. She has also been inducted in the Iowa African American Hall of Fame. Other honors include Des Moines Human Rights commission Mary Louise Smith Award, Metro Women’s “Woman of the Year in 2009”, Business Record, “Woman of Influence”, Dollars and Sense Magazine’s “Outstanding Business and Professional Award”, Iowa Jaycees’ Outstanding Young Iowan, YWCA Woman of Achievement, Outstanding Service to Youth by Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Judge Luther Glanton Award for Outstanding Public Service and “Outstanding Community member” by the Junior League of Greater Des Moines.


Jacquie is married to District Court Judge Odell McGhee II. They have two adult children; Carey Lucia, and Ty Ellington, deceased. The McGhee family are members of Corinthian Baptist Church. Jacquie was the 2012-2014 President of the Des Moines Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc. and is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and Links, Inc.

Chair Health

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