Jennifer earned her BA in Political Science from Antioch College, her Master’s in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College. She received her Doctorate in Education from the Center for International Education at the University of Massachusetts. Her dissertation, Multicultural Education in a Predominantly White Rural Public Elementary School, focused on preparing students in predominately rural white schools to live in a more diverse world. During and shortly after graduate school Jennifer taught Intercultural Communication at Lesley College and the School for International Training, along with other courses at the University of Massachusetts and Springfield College.
After inheriting some money at 21 she began her work in the world of social change philanthropy. She founded The People’s Resource of Southwest Ohio with a community board. Since then she has been involved with a wide range of social change philanthropic and donor activist organizations, including A Territory Resource (now Social Justice Fund), Threshold Foundation, Peace Development Fund, Women Donors Network, Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts, Peppercorn Foundation, Responsible Wealth and many local efforts in Western Massachusetts.
Jennifer co-founded Class Action, with Felice Yeskel. Class Action’s mission is to inspire action to end classism, raise awareness, facilitate cross-class dialogue, support cross-class alliances and work with others to promote economic justice. Jennifer continues to support and work closely with Class Acton while she also owns her own business, Jennifer Ladd Consulting, in which she does philanthropic advising, fundraising consulting and organizing around local investing.
Jennifer has recently moved to Rocky Hill co-housing and does all of her work in the context of creating resilient, vibrant, sustainable community.