Rosa Jackson in Action: Sanitizing, Sterilizing and Smiling

Rosa Jackson works to keep the hospital clean and sanitized for our patients and families as a member of the environmental services team. She reflects on her favorite parts of working at the hospital, and what Black History Month means to her.

Rosa Jackson at Johns Hopkins All Children's.

Rosa Jackson at Johns Hopkins All Children's.

Published in Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital - Winter 2021

Black History Month is a time to celebrate and highlight Black Americans, including the incredible employees who make an impact on our patients, families and organization overall. One of those individuals is Rosa Jackson, a familiar, smiling face you may recognize around the hospital. Rosa works in environmental services, ensuring our facility is clean and sanitized, especially during the pandemic. She took some time to reflect on her time at the hospital and what Black History Month means to her.

What is your favorite thing about working at the hospital?

One of my favorite things is to engage and meet different families. Also, being able to help families that are lost and to listen to families who want to express their feelings. I am always willing to encourage and give compassion to parents/families who are scared or frustrated.

This year’s Black History Month theme is The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity. What does embracing representation, identity and diversity of Black people look like to you?

It is family and my Mom, a woman who was a single parent going to school while raising a family of six children. My mother pursued her higher education finishing her B.A. to provide a better life for her children and ensure they would have better opportunities for themselves. Myself and all of my siblings graduated high school and have gone on to lead productive and successful lives. All of this was due to the hard work, dedication and example my Mother has provided for us.

Name the Black American you admire or think people should learn more about.

Cathy Williams is the person I most admire. She became the first African-American woman to serve in the U.S. Army in 1866. Since women were barred from joining the military at the time, she enlisted as a man under the pseudonym William Cathay. She not only is a role model to Black women, she is a role model to all women. She proved that there should not be limitation on what a woman can do or achieve.