Eric B. Jackson
Corporate Vice President and Market Manager
Education: Bachelor of Science, business–management, Johnson C. Smith University; Chartered Life Underwriter, insurance, American College for Financial Services
Company Name: New York Life Insurance Company
Industry: Financial/Life insurance
Company CEO: Theodore A. Mathas
Company Headquarters Location: New York City, New York
Number of Employees: 11,000+
Your Location (if different from above): Atlanta, Georgia
Words you live by: To empower the African American community through wealth creation
Who is your personal hero? My mother, Norma Jackson
What book are you reading? Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin
What was your first job: Piano Player at my local AME Church
Favorite charity: Alzheimer’s Association
Interests: Working out, cooking, exploring nature, and quiet time
Changing Lives and Impacting Generations
My professional passion is ignited by doing the work of promoting financial literacy. I have the privilege of working alongside the more than 1,400 financial professionals as the corporate vice president and market manager of the African American Market Unit for New York Life Insurance.
For me, it dates back nearly 20 years when I was a college intern for an established agent within the company. What initially was a requirement for graduation became an epiphany, and the catalyst for finding my passion and purpose. In the years that followed, my career provided a clear path toward serving my community directly and indirectly.
Transitioning from intern to sales development manager and ascending the organization’s ranks in the years that followed allowed me to learn the invaluable fundamentals of financial literacy. I also saw first-hand how many of the communities around me were using insurance and financial products to build, protect, and preserve wealth. This experience made me aware of the possibility of financially empowering and uplifting Black communities by creating generational wealth.
Many African Americans contend with financial inequalities due to decades of injustice and subsequent disenfranchisements. These disadvantages have created a significant wealth gap compared to our white counterparts. This challenge serves as an opportunity for my team and me to inform and empower our community. Because of this, I am most passionate. It is what keeps the fire within me burning.
A notable achievement that I’ve garnered during my New York Life career is the support I provided to the African American Market’s “$50 Billion Empowerment Plan.” Launched in 2011, the Empowerment Plan is a national movement with the mission of creating over $50 billion of tax-free, future income through insurance. Our team achieved that goal in 2017; the work continues, and of this, I am incredibly proud.
This year, COVID-19 and the social justice push occurring throughout the country have presented new challenges for the African American community. The opportunity to help meet those challenges has sparked my passion once again.
As a leader, I had to regroup with my team to re-imagine our approach to serving the community. We’ve leaned into embracing technology in our engagement and outreach. Additionally, we’re partnering with national financial and social justice thought leaders to develop fresh ideas and implement best practices. Our objective is to deliver the support and resources to what I am most passionate about personally and professionally, the Black Community. We’re not just changing lives, we’re also impacting generations.