Press Release: Retiring After More Than 23 Years of Service

Nurse graduates together at their pinning ceremony standing in front of Capital IDEA's banner that reads: "Be Your Own Hero"

JANUARY 13, 2022

Contact: Amy Silvey, Director of Development and Communications

Capital IDEA announces the retirement of founding Executive Director, Steve Jackobs

AUSTIN, TEXAS – JANUARY 13, 2022 – After serving as Capital IDEA’s Executive Director since 1998, Steve Jackobs announced his plan to retire in August of this year.

“After more than 23 years, and as I turn 65 in August, 2022 is the right time for me to pass on the leadership of Capital IDEA. I am proud and honored to have served as Capital IDEA’s Executive Director since its founding. It is my bedrock faith that we solve problems with win-win solutions. Capital IDEA proves that bringing together businesses that need skilled workers and our neighbors who need good careers is a win-win. Moreover, I stand in awe of our students’ grit and resolve as they work and study hard to create better lives for themselves and their families. I am inspired to see our graduates’ children follow their parents’ examples and succeed in their own education.”

“Capital IDEA has been fortunate to have such a committed, passionate, and steadfast servant leader since its inception.”

During his stewardship, Capital IDEA has so far placed 2,000 low-income Central Texans into new high-paying careers, primarily in nursing, other health care careers, tech, and the trades. Capital IDEA and Steve have received numerous awards over the years, including multiple Greater Austin Chamber Business Awards, First Tee Austin Robert T. Hughes Philanthropic Leader, Liveable City Vision Award, Ethics in Business, Bank of America Neighborhood Builder, Greenlights for NonProfit Success Collaboration Award, CommunityTechKnowledge, Ernst & Young Social Entrepreneur of the Year, and the Dream Come True Foundation Lifetime Achievement. Capital IDEA will be featured in an upcoming book, Growing Fairly/How to Build Opportunity and Equity in Workforce Development, by former Indianapolis Mayor Stephen Goldsmith and Kate Coleman.

Board Chair, Rev Paul Skeith, shared, “Central Texas invests local funds in the careers and futures of its low-income neighbors. Capital IDEA has been fortunate to have such a committed, passionate, and steadfast servant leader since its inception. We thank Steve for his legacy, and the board aims to find someone of equal passion and inspiration to continue to help families and local businesses flourish.”

About Capital IDEA
Capital IDEA serves the community by acting as a bridge, connecting committed, yet underemployed people to employers in need of highly skilled workers. Capital IDEA funds participants’ tuition, books, and childcare and works with them to find employment with good salaries, benefits, and career growth opportunities.

Established in 1998 through the efforts of Central Texas Interfaith (formerly Austin Interfaith) and the local business community, Capital IDEA lifts working families out of poverty by sponsoring educational services that lead to life-long financial stability.

To date, more than 2,000 participants have entered career employment in high-demand occupations, including nursing and other healthcare occupations, high tech, and professional trades. The average starting earnings of participants entering employment in the last 12 months is $25.00/hr. More than 900 participants are currently in training or are receiving post-placement services. Half aspire to careers in nursing.

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