I am Alma Rodríguez Jones, a lifelong educator with 28 years of teaching experience. I have taught in private and public institutions from kindergarten through college. Although many of you would disagree, I consider myself a North Carolinian born in Lima, Peru. North Carolina is the only place where I have memories throughout my life, as a child, a teenager, and now as an adult. It is the home base for all my siblings and me. My father was a Peruvian diplomat, so my mother’s generations-old roots in the Appalachian Mountains were a constant. To that, I added my marriage to a man whose family roots in these mountains are as deep as my mother’s.
I finished high school in an NC public school, and I am the product of the UNC System (UNCA, UNC, & NCSU). My twins graduated from NC schools and currently attend state institutions, UNC and Appalachian State. I have taught in three NC community colleges for the past 25 years and experienced the transformative power these institutions can have on an individual. That is why I am so passionate about education in our state and have spent my professional life teaching in the mountains of North Carolina. Public education policy matters and impacts all citizens.