Jeanine Jones

Books by Jeanine Jones

About the Author

Jeanine Jones (born Jeanine Brooks, first born of Melvin Haywood & Phyllis Brooks) is a native of Chicago Illinois. She is an educator in an inner city school. Responsible for educating youth who are challenged in the areas of academics and socio-economics, she is continuously striving to develop new strategies effective for struggling readers in an inner city environment. Her absolute affinity for Literature (especially poetry), cultural development, the arts and reading is essential for life and propels her to teach and continuously learn.

Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, Jones began writing poetry and stories that related to everyday life. She took what she saw, heard and lived and put her creativity into pages of spoken words. Jones felt very passionate about the lifestyle of the world she lived in and decided that this world needed to be heard. Writing became her refuge for serenity and peace of mind through tough relationships and the stress of coping with everyday life. During her college years J.J. teamed of with a group of aspiring artist and business minds that had developed a record label, W.H.Y.B.M.A.D? Records. Impressed with this group of young men and even more impressed by what the acronym W.H.Y.B.M.A.D? stood for (Why Hate Young Blacks Making A Difference?), she was intuitively forced to become a part of this intriguing group. Jones released two spoken word CD’s with the label and became Executive Director of Spoken Word Artist of WHYBMAD Records. Along with her husband, Marcus Jones (a founding member of W.H.Y.B.M.A.D) Jones assisted with running the company for several years.

Since 2005 she has served as Drama Director for Power Summer Camp. She received her B.S. from Rust College and her M.A.T and Reading Specialist from the University of Memphis. Jones has taught Theatre and has been a student of the Arts, attending the TN Arts Academy at Belmont University. In 20011 Jones received the Library Information Specialist endorsement from Union University.

In 1998 Jones'(formerly Jeanine Brooks) poems were published in two anthologies by The National Library of Poetry. She received The Editor’s Choice Award twice for her poems Life (Of Summer’s Passing) and Tides of Time (Outstanding poets of 1998). She continues to write “because it heals the soul and enlightens and lifts spirits” she says.

Jones now resides in Memphis, TN and is currently promoting her second book Yes We Can! Yes We Did! (an innovative story about the unity (theme of unity continues) shared among the American people as they elected the 44th President of the United States of America. This story is a rainbow that embraces all colors and cultures regardless of race religion or creed America’s came together and made unprecedented history.) and her first book and stage play We Can All Decorate the Same Tree, which has turned into a movement to unite women of color to combine their strengths and talents to build something beautiful. This book is the anchor for the ZADS©Series and the ZADS© Big Sister’s Series.

The play is presented by Speak To Me Theatre Group, which was founded by Jones. As it relates to diversity and common ground of African American females, We Can All Decorate the Same Tree can be enjoyed by all. It was first introduced in the form of a children’s book and has now been adapted to a stage play to impact the most affected (African American females) by the plague of modern day inner race apartheid.  The play introduces the big sisters of the ZADS© (Zanette, Akisha, Deltina and Sirhona) Christmas Club as they find themselves not too thrilled about being roommates.  Just as their little sisters did in the Christmas tree decorating contest, the diverse group find friendship despite their differences. They learn a valuable lesson about what they can achieve when they work together, and soon realize that they have something beyond the obvious in common.

If you’ve had nostalgic moments reminiscing about your school girl beauty or college girl cutie days, you’ll relive them through these characters. You will find this work very enlightening and enriching; and hopefully come to some resolve on how you approach your peers and colleagues in an effort to repair inner race relations/sisterhood as well as race relations in general.

As an African American female and a graduate of an HBCU, the author, Jeanine Jones knowing the culture of campus life and Black Greek life with a vast appreciation for them both, believes this will be a beneficial experience to all who respect unity.

Although the title seems seasonal the author uses it as a metaphor for working together in unity to create something beautiful. We Can All Decorate the Same Tree, the stage play shows the diverse life of college females in sororities. These leading young ladies lead and live up to the concept of working together to build something beautiful, a beautiful play that will convey a positive message and leave a lasting impression of sisterhood and UNITY! They will amaze you with their talents as they act, step, dance and deliver poetic lines in their own way. Come prepared to laugh, cry and enjoy the unity of sisterhood as we take this work from page to stage. The novel Step Show, ZADS Big Sisters #1  will be released fall 2012. It is based on the children’s book We Can All Decorate the Same Tree and the play. (Speak To Me Theatre Group offers a spring and fall acting program for youth and aspiring actors for the Speak To Me Theatre Group, upcoming  seasons.  Fall acting camp participants are cast or involved in the We Can All Decorate the Same Tree production.)

As an educator, playwright, author and poet Jones is surrounded by young people daily. Youth set sparks to her fire.  When found without a pen and pad she  keeps busy by educating youth, directing and casting youth in original and published cultural, educational productions that address social issues, presenting her work for various events, and most rewarding spending time with her family. Inspired by life and all that it entails, this promising author is destined for literary greatness.  Speak To Me (Spoken Word, Poetry, Emancipating Arts Kaleidoscope Transmitting Original Messages Effusively) was established in 2003 by Jeanine Jones as a poetry event. It has now evolved into a publishing company. The company provides many artists with a platform and outlet to express and display their talents to the public. As she strives to continue providing a tasteful medium of the Arts, to the community via a plethora of platforms for literacy and education, she hopes that you will be inspired to inspire others.

Joining Jones and Speak To Me Books, as they embark on a journey to embrace and love the diversity among a unique culture as we grow to love and accept one another we will grow to love and accept others. She looks forward to seeing you on the trail.

Jones’ motto “ Literacy is Life~ Live!”

Visit the Author

Jeanine Jones Websume:


Orpheum Teaching Artist 

Orpheum Teaching Artist Training Program TATP Cohort 2019

Rising Star Camp 2019

Orpheum Teacher Advisory Board 2018-Present

Orpheum Arts Integration Teacher Professional Development 200-Present


Union University 2010-2011                                       School Library Administration

University Of Memphis  2005                                    Reading Specialists

Belmont University Summer 2007                                  TN Arts Academy, Theatre Coursework,                          

University Of Memphis 2001-2004                          Master of Arts in Teaching

Rust College 1993-1996                                       Bachelors of Science 


Shelby County/Memphis City Schools (formerly)

Read 180 Program Facilitator/Administrator & Instructor 2005-Present,

Literacy Workshop Presenter 2006-Present, Theater Instructor 2006-2008,

MEA Spoken Word Contest Sponsor 2006,

Drama Club 2002-2008,

Special Education Teacher 2000-2005,

Well Read Cobra’s Book Club 2003-2005  



Professional Licensed Teacher, Areas of Endorsement Reading Specialist K-12    (486), Special Education Comprehensive (461),  Lib In Sp Prek-12 (473)

Highly Qualified Status- Reading, Language Arts, Biology and Science,

Multi-tasking, Meeting and exceeding goals, Communication skills (oral & written) and Computer/Technological skills, Proposed Library Budget & LIC Grant, Writing, Publishing Directing, Playwright,

Published Author, We Can All Decorate the Same Tree, Yes We Can! Yes We Did!  



Yes We Can! Yes We Did!


Possibly Inspired the Animation Introduction concept of Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family & the holiday concept of Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas (click here)  We Can All Decorate the Same Tree

Stage PlayFall Acting CampPartnership/Collaboration w/My Leading Young lady


U Can Be Tour, Reailty MCS Parent Demand Summit 


Speak To Me Publishing

We Can All Decorate the Same Tree

“The Children” featured poet”                      Collaboration w/ Mista Marshall and Dulaa Of Reailty Records




Basics Learning/Power Summer Camp, Drama Director/Camp Counselor


Project Smile Free Dental Cleaning & Screening and school supplies for youth in Holly Springs, MS. & surrounding areas. Collaboration w/ Dr. David Maxwell D.D.S and colleagues, WHYBMAD Records, Clayborn & Associates, Hicks Solutions LLC, Peagues & Sons Barber Shop…and other local businesses.          

1996-2006 WHYBMAD Record                                             Spoken Word Poetry CEO/Rep. Talent Coordinator, Event Planner, Newsletter, Writer, Artist


Turner South My South Speaks Poetry Slam Finalist

2003-2005 Speak To Me 

(Open Mic Event bringing Nationally known Spoken Word Artists to the Mid South ) featuring…

Will Da Real One, Samantha Raheem, Ms. Nterpretatation Taalam Acey, Ms. Reyonna (Third Eye Open), Stephanie Pruitt Wendy Oh, Mista Marshall (Dodson) Chandell Ultimate


Hear Her Speak, Nine Poetess and One Mic in a tribute to 80’s Hip Hop…Featuring…JJ., Arekah “Da Goddess” Dunlap, Dawn, Hannah, Michelle Montgomery, Ms. Dee Lyte,, Toshia Shaw, Treasure, Woodstar


Africa in April Poetry Showcase Organizer  


Sister Hood Showcase Poetry Showcase Organizer 


Spoken Word Expo Rep Word Up! 3&4, Sponsor International Poetry Festival and Concert Series presented and hosted by Queen Sheba, Oya Xclusive


Overflowing Poets Open Mic Event bringing Nationally known Spoken Word Artist to the Mid South featuring… Queen Sheba 03, Rebecca “Butterfly” Vauhgns 03, Nitche Ward (The Original Woman) 03, Ebony Washington 03, Khari B, Danny Devine 


The Spoken Word According to Jthepoetress, WHYBMAD Poets Compilation 


Jeanine Brooks’ Sorority Series, Fraternity Row Poetry dedicated to the nine African American sororities and fraternities     


National Library of Congress

Outstanding Poets of 1998, Of Summer’s Passing, Editor’s choice award


Rituals (legendary Open Mic spot in Chicago )                 First time performing Spoken-Word Poetry


Studied Abroad, Rust College, Gambia (Juffureh Village  home of Binta Kinte and other Alex Hailey Ancestors), Senegal, Dakar

Additional Skits & Plays 

You Can Be What You Want To Be,

Mother to Son,                                                     


Here is what others have said about “We Can All Decorate the Same Tree


We Can All Decorate the Same Tree” is beautifully written and wonderfully colourful. The message is obvious and even extends beyond the seasonal setting. Jeanine has produced a very good story that children, as well as adults, should love.

-Ernest A. Donelson, II Founder& President Black AIDS Memphis/Minority Health Awareness Initiative

Jeanine Jones has crafted a warm and inviting story about finding and forging a long-lasting friendship.  A great holiday story which keeps the reader engrossed and entertained. It is truly an inspirational story for all ages.

-Inger Upchurch, M.Ed.Manager of Cossitt and Crenshaw Libraries              

Memphis Public and Information Center 

The story has a wonderful theme and is sure to be a hit.  In a world that so often celebrates the individual and the illusionary power of me over us, this story portrays the real beauty and power of cooperation, of maintaining our personal freedom and identity yet multiplying our strengths and capacity through diversity, of the difference between a singular color and the mosaic of a rainbow. Our world needs more voices like this author’s. Jeanine, keep up the great beauty of your voice.

-Dr. Ric Potts Director of Secondary Instruction SupportMCS

We Can All Decorate the Same Tree is a story about togetherness. It leaves the reader with a sense of how combined efforts have a greater yield than individual ones. This book teaches important lessons about sharing, indirectly encouraging African American children to combine their talents and celebrate their potential, not only because of their shared ethnicity, but also because sharing is a gift that keeps on giving.

– Jerrie C. Scott, Founder The African American Read-In Chain


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