Voters returned Evelyn Ware-Jackson on Tuesday to the East Baton Rouge Parish School for a third time as she defeated challenger Cliff Lewis to represent District 5.
Ware-Jackson, 59, is the owner of WareHouse Business Network LLC, which provides affordable housing in the Mid-City and Ardendale areas. She is also chairwoman of the board of the directors of the Red Stick Project, which spearheads community art projects involving youth.
Elected in 2010, Ware-Jackson joined a board-backed majority that has set the school agenda. She served as vice president in 2016 and then as board president in 2017. She has pressed for changes in attendance zones to cut down on long bus rides and establish later school start times for teenagers.
Lewis has worked at a handful of Baton Rouge public schools over the past decade and is currently parent liaison at the Mentorship Academy, a downtown Baton Rouge charter school. His wife, Donna Collins-Lewis, is in her third term on the Metro Council, representing much of the Mid-City area that District 5 also includes. Cliff Lewis is also a former pro football player and a collegiate football coach.
Ware-Jackson and Lewis, who are both Democrats, have both vied for the support of the business and education reform groups that have spent heavily this election cycle. Ware-Jackson also won the support of one of the two big teacher unions, the Louisiana Association of Educators.