Ms. King-Jorde is no stranger to board leadership, philanthropy or development work. She served as a board member at The Putney School in Vermont for more than a decade, was former Governor at the Englewood Field Club in New Jersey where she facilitated events to help raise awareness and funds for community based nonprofits and served on the Planning Board for the City of Englewood, New Jersey. In New York, Ms. King-Jorde chaired the Planning Committee for the Malcolm X Memorial with Dr. Betty Shabazz, was a board member of the Harlem Heights Historical Society, served on panels for the Percent for Art and Art in Architecture programs commissioning public art for federal and city buildings and spaces, and has currently finished her fifth term as board chair at her Harlem-based cooperative.
A native of Albany, Georgia, Ms. King-Jorde attended The Putney School in Vermont where she serendipitously landed in the theater arts realm as a costume designer for student productions. She had built her reputation via a modest business patching jeans and altering clothing for schoolmates. Later on, her studies at Bennington College fueled her passion to pursue formal studies in Theater Design and Architecture which included studying at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) and The Architectural Association School of Architecture (AA) in London, England. Ultimately, Columbia University is where King would lend focus to her advanced studies in the field of architecture. In 1995 she was awarded a Loeb Fellowship at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design.
Her professional career includes serving as a planner in the Office of Construction and special advisor for the Mayor’s Office for the City of New York under the Koch, Dinkins and Giuliani administrations, including providing project oversight for development and construction at New York City’s museums and other cultural institutions.
In 1991, she assumed a leadership role in preserving arguably one of the oldest cultural assets of the City of New York. She was appointed as Special Advisor to the Honorable Mayor David N. Dinkins and was subsequently designated the project executive and consultant for the Memorialization of the African Burial Ground National Historic Landmark, where she coordinated and oversaw the national design competition for an interpretive center and memorial for a 17th century burial ground of free and enslaved Africans in the shadow of a Federal Office Building in Lower Manhattan.