The Reich College of Education at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, is establishing a hall of fame for alumni and faculty members. The first honoree to have his or her portrait hung in the gallery is Jesse C. Jackson, one of the first African American faculty members at Appalachian State. He was hired as a lecturer in 1974.
Jackson was the author of nine books for young adults, including his best know work Call Me Charley. The book, first published in 1945, tells the story of a black youth who moves into an all-White neighborhood. Jackson also authored the biography Make a Joyful Noise Unto the Lord! The Life of Mahalia Jackson, Queen of Gospel Singers.
Jackson received an honorary doctorate from Appalachian State in 1982, a year before he died.