ABOUT ELLA JONES
"Ella M. Jones has a rich heritage in service to the Lord, the church and the community. She is a proven leader with the skills, compassion and commitment to improve the quality of life for all residents."
Ella M. Jones and her late husband Tim moved to Ferguson in search of quality educational opportunities for their daughter. She has been a resident for more than 40 years. Ella graduated from the University of Missouri at St. Louis with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Chemistry. She was certified by the American Chemical Society as a high pressure liquid chromatographer and completed training as a pharmacy technician. Ella’s previous employers include Washington University School of Medicine, in the Biochemistry Molecular Bio-physics Department as a Peptide Specialist, and KV Pharmaceutical Company as an Analytical Chemist. Ella also served many years as a Sales Director with Mary Kay Cosmetics. In that position she provided leadership to over 50 beauty consultants. Ella’s unit earned seven Mary Kay cars and their highest production in one year was over $230,000.00. Ella's faith is the root of her compassion for people. Her grandparents, Lester and Ruth Exkano were instrumental in establishing an African Methodist Episcopal Church in the city of New Orleans, Louisiana. Their dedication and commitment to African Methodism was instilled in Ella M. Jones at an early age. Ella is a member of the Missouri Annual Conference in the Fifth Episcopal District. She was ordained an itinerant elder from St. Paul A.M.E. Church, “The Mother Church of African Methodism west of the Mississippi.” As an associate minister she provided a wide range of ministries to the church. Ella served as the pastor of several congregations including Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Paynesville, Missouri; St. John African Methodist Episcopal Church in St. Charles, Missouri; and Tri Union A.M.E. Church in St. Louis, Missouri.
Ella was recognized as a distinguished community leader by the Alpha Nu Chapter of the Phi Delta Kappa Sorority in 1993. She has been a member of Rainbow Chapter #80 Order of the Eastern Star for over 30 years. In October 1998, Ella Jones and her family stepped from complacency to action with a group of believers and organized Holy Trinity A.M.E. Mission. Initially located at 409 South Florissant Rd. in Ferguson, the mission then moved to another location which grew until 2002 when the church was absorbed into other congregations. Ella was a Missouri Conference Trustee for two years and served as Treasurer and 2nd Vice President for the A.M.E. Ministerial Alliance. Ella's business experience and her career in the ministry provides a fertile foundation for her current career in public service. After 30 years of being a Mary Kay Sales Director and 22 years as a Pastor, Ella transitioned to work full time in the community. As a public servant, Ella’s career includes being elected as Councilwoman for Ward 1 in April 2015, and she became a member of the National Women’s Political Caucus. She won nearly 50 percent of the vote in a four-way race. Her resounding victory made history as she became the first African-American to serve on the Council. Ella's strong vision and ability to build coalitions has resulted in more than $8 million in investments for our City. Ella secured $4.7 million through a federal grant to serve the needs of our youth. Her work with Washington University has resulted in partnerships that will support the implementation of the historic Department of Justice agreement to improve policing and other social justice issues in our community. After serving one year of her term as Councilwoman, Ella made history again by becoming a candidate in the race for Mayor of the City of Ferguson. She was the first African-American female to ever run for the office. Though she did not win the election, she received significant support from the community.
Ella is in her second term as a Ferguson City Council member. She has continued to accumulate various awards and serve in numerous capacities. She received the Legacy Award from The National Council of Negro Women, Inc. in 2014. In 2015, on behalf of the City of Ferguson Ella received an award from the Missouri Commission on Human Rights. During 2017, Ella became a member of the Board of Directors of the Emerson YMCA. She was also certified by the Missouri Governance Institute as a Municipal Official. In the Fall of 2018, Ella became a member of the Board of Directors of Metro-Market. Ella is very passionate about Metro’s mission. She firmly believes that residents in every community should have easy access to fresh fruits and vegetables at affordable prices. Ella is very happy that Metro-Market is meeting those needs, especially for people who live in food deserts, i.e. areas that are void of fresh fruits and vegetables. In the same year, Ella became a Guild member of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis. Most recently, Ella received a political leadership award during the 2019 Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Tribute sponsored by Saint Louis University and the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis. In addition to being the founder and current Chairperson of Community Forward, Inc., a nonprofit community development organization, Ella founded the Annual UNITY Weekend, which provides school supplies and support services to families with children attending schools in the districts serving Ferguson. For the same population, Ella has been instrumental in securing free children’s shoes distributed by Samaritan’s Feet Organization, during the organization’s National Day of Service Event held every January in Ferguson.