Meet a Mom -Jacqueline Nelson - FairfieldMoms


Meet Jacqueline Nelson, a mother of two who lives in Fairfield. Jacqueline is a school advocate and works as the Director of Equity and Inclusion at St. Luke’s School in New Canaan. She and her family moved to Fairfield from Stamford in 2022, after falling in love with a house they wanted to fill with “love and laughs.” Find out more about Jacqueline, her family, and about her work to foster belonging.

Do you work and/or volunteer? If yes, please tell us where and what you do.
For the past four years, I have worked as the Director of Equity and Inclusion at St. Luke’s School — a secular (non-religious), independent day school in New Canaan for grades 5-12. In the simplest terms, I work alongside my fellow administrative colleagues to ensure that our school community feels seen, valued, and heard and capable of bringing their most authentic and confident selves to school every day. More specifically, I am charged with developing strategies, policies, and best practices for engaging students, faculty, staff, families, alums, and trustees in productive civil discourse and intercultural dialogue while encouraging divergent perspective-taking and developmentally appropriate identity exploration that fosters belonging.

While my undergraduate degree is in business marketing, thanks to the encouragement of my then-boyfriend, now husband, in 2010, I went to graduate school for early childhood general and special education at Bank Street College of Education. I spent my most precious classroom years teaching kindergarten before setting out on the path where I currently find myself working as a full-time equity practitioner. Daily, I draw from my classroom teacher toolkit in my current role to inspire community conversations, shared learning, and professional development opportunities that simplify the complexity of societal dynamics situated in historical realities.

How many kids do you have, and what are their ages?


Kayden (4) and Amani (2)


I am privileged to have two young children. My son Kayden is almost four and a half years old, and my daughter Amani recently turned two.

Where do your children go to school, and how did you pick their school?



My husband, Andre, and I both attended public schools, but have officially become independent school parents. We went back and forth about our philosophical belief in public school education and the undeniably distinct opportunities found in independent schools. This is our son’s first year at Unquowa here in Fairfield. A well-kept secret and precious gem of a school down the street from our house that perfectly suits our son’s personality and family values. Kayden’s class goes outside to play every day, rain or shine. (They have rain suits — an adorable sight to behold!)

Our daughter is at Bright Beginnings Early Childhood Center in Fairfield, where Kayden was before making his Unquowa transition. We feel incredibly fortunate to have had the Bright Beginnings teachers we’ve had over the past four years.

What about your school makes it right for your family?
In addition to the solid academic foundation, we especially love and appreciate the cultural diversity and relatability of the families at both schools. Both school communities include people from various cultural and religious backgrounds, socioeconomic statuses, gender expressions, sexual orientations, and family compositions. Naturally, as a DEIB practitioner and as black people who grew up in a predominantly white community, we are very intentional about exposing our children to all sorts of people and diversity of all kinds. We want them both to feel self-confident and affirmed in who they are within their respective learning environments. Unquowa and Bright Beginnings are right for our family because we see that and then some, and we have evidence that our children are known, well cared for, and appreciated for who they are in all of their unapologetic toddler ways.

When did you move to Fairfield, and what led you to settle there?
We moved to Fairfield in November 2022 after living in Stamford for five years and in Harlem for about 10 years before that. I was about five or six months pregnant with my daughter when we were actively looking for a bigger house to fit our growing family. My husband’s friend from work, a long-time Fairfield resident, suggested we look in the area. Fairfield has great beaches, good food, and is family-friendly. With our Stamford townhouse already being sold, we were getting quite anxious about our transition until one fateful day when we saw our first (and only) Fairfield property at an open house event.

It felt familiar and inviting from the moment we walked into the house. After a brief exchange with the listing agent, we learned that the house that we described as having “good juju” was being sold by a couple who were retired and downsizing after raising their four children there, and the sellers were hoping to have another family fill it with love and laughs. As it turns out, we were just that family. We put in an offer that same day, and it was accepted on the same day. The following day at work, Andre discovered that we would be moving into the childhood home of his co-worker’s best friend. Talk about Kismet!

Two years later, we are still discovering all that Fairfield has to offer and have no regrets about taking another leap of faith.

What are your favorite family activities in the area?


Over the past two years, we certainly have found our fair share of good restaurants and date night spots; however, as a family, we most enjoy going to the beach, library, Sand Castle (and any other) playground, Chips for early morning Saturday breakfast, Stepping Stones Museum (not exactly Fairfield, but a family favorite), and more recently, Playhouse Fairfield which happens to be owned by a fellow Unqouwa family!

Name one thing people would be surprised to know about you.
Before going back to school to become a kindergarten teacher, I spent the first five years post-undergrad working in New York City’s Garment District as a personal assistant/sales assistant/fit-model in the fashion industry. For details, you will have to wait for my memoir!

In the meantime, I can share that my very first industry job was working at Warnaco (before PVH acquired it) in the Calvin Klein division, where I was responsible for figuring out how to maximize brand visibility by developing floor plans for the merchandise fixtures. Yes, that is an actual job, figuring out how to maximize product placement with folding tables, hanging fixtures, and precise mannequin placement.

When you need “me time,” what are your favorite ways to escape?
As of late, “me time” includes visits to the spa for a massage or facial, the nail or hair salon, or the chiropractor (there is something about a good realignment that feels so rejuvenating). I also gifted myself a membership to The Haircare Spa (in Norwalk) this January. I can have three luxurious hours of uninterrupted pampering and a fabulous “Spa Slay,” a.k.a. blowout. At home, I also love getting lost in any of the five books I’m usually reading or sneaking off to take a nap. In the summer, it’s a glass of rosé on the patio after the kids have gone to sleep.

What’s the best advice you’ve received from another mom/dad?
One piece of advice that I now know wasn’t an original quote came to me by way of an older, wiser family friend after my first child was born and continues to resonate: “The days are long, but the years are short” — an important reminder to savor the time when your children are young and actually want to be around you!

What is your favorite place in town to:
Have dinner:
Toss up between Bodega Taco Bar and Geronimo Tequila Bar
Go out for a special occasion: The Sinclair or JB Percival
Spend time together as a family outdoors: Jennings Beach, Sand Castle Playground, or our backyard and pool
Grab coffee: The Granola Bar
Shop for the perfect gift: Beehive

Join The Fairfield CT Moms Network Community

Stay up-to-date with what is happening in-and-around Fairfield, CT with local events, community highlights, and exclusive deals.