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Candace Jackson was appointed in 2012 to serve as Special Advisor to the National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) within the United States Department of Commerce. In this capacity, Ms. Jackson provides advice to the National Director on advancing MBDA’s operations and programs through its nationwide network of 40 Minority Business Centers. Ms. Jackson also manages MBDA’s corporate relations from the National Director’s Office, assists on matters of domestic and global affairs, represents MBDA in various interagency collaborations, and engages in business and community outreach. She helps to develop policy initiatives and strategic partnerships aimed at creating and retaining jobs and supporting the growth of minority-owned businesses through greater access to contracts, capital, and new markets.
Prior to joining the MBDA, Ms. Jackson practiced law for nearly five years at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP, where she represented national and international companies in areas of Business Litigation and Employment Law. She entered private practice following a one-year dual judicial clerkship with the Honorable Kaye G. Hearn, Chief Judge, and The Honorable Jasper M. Cureton, both of the South Carolina Court of Appeals. Ms. Jackson maintains membership with the American Bar Association and the South Carolina Bar Association. She also demonstrates her commitment to public and global service through membership with the American Council on Germany and as Co-founder of an all-girls educational foundation in Liberia, West Africa. She has served on various Boards of Directors and held a series of leadership roles of organizations and initiatives aimed at promoting business and economic development, enhancing diversity and inclusion, improving opportunities for minorities and the underrepresented, and affecting international policy.
A native of Columbia, South Carolina, Ms. Jackson earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Philosophy, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, from Spelman College in 2003. After college, Ms. Jackson earned her Juris Doctor Degree from Duke University School of Law in 2006.