Legend. Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a legend? In a world where many want to be “instafamous”, do people really know what is needed to reach that level?
Patty Jackson has shown over her 39 years in the radio industry that greatness requires hard work, discipline, sacrifice, persistence, a good attitude and giving back.
His work ethic and dedication to his community over the years has turned Jackson into a living legend. It now legitimately has a street at 23rd and Ellsworth Streets ceremoniously named “Patty Jackson Way”.
A daughter of South Philly, Jackson began her broadcasting career at Southwark Motivation High School where she was the morning announcer on the school’s sound system. She didn’t know she would become a radio legend.
Heard daily on WDAS-FM, Jackson has worked on multiple stations of all formats including Urban, Urban AC, Pop and even Country – a true pioneer in radio.
On Friday, board member Kenyatta Johnson paid tribute to Jackson’s radio career and service to his community by ceremoniously renaming the 2300 block of Ellsworth Street “Patty Jackson Way.” The city council passed the resolution for the name change earlier.
“I started 411 when I was a kid. I remember running down that street telling everyone in the neighborhood that Elvis was dead, ”Jackson said. Hundreds of people gathered on that same street to watch Jackson receive Friday’s honor.
It was an event rich in stars and emotions. Musician Carol Riddick opened up about their friendship and how she saw Jackson dealing with life’s ups and downs with ease and grace.
Soul jazz musician Jeff Bradshaw and neo-soul duo Kindred The Family Soul were also there to recognize Jackson’s contributions. They also spoke about her delicious cuisine and how she has helped them throughout their careers.
“You are as genuine as they come,” said singer Kathy Sledge of Sister Sledge. “Not only do you breathe love, but you are love. You light up the airwaves with your mind. You have a smile that lights up the room. It’s like the sun. So every time you go down Patty Jackson Way. It has a whole new meaning: the sunny side of the street.
Artist Patti LaBelle was also there to support Jackson and stood by his side throughout the ceremony. Members of the crowd joked, shouting “It’s Patti and Patty!”
At the dedication, LaBelle said, “I love her and will do anything for her. Congratulations my dear friend.
Much like Jackson, she used her acceptance speech to thank others. She took the time to mention anyone who helped her in one way or another. Not just in his radio career, but also in his entire life.
She shouted at the people in the crowd and spoke about their importance to her. In an emotional moment, she spoke of not having her parents with her to see this honor and recovering from a stroke that initially left her unable to walk and see.
“It was God because he had more planned for me,” Jackson said.
She also spoke about the artists, community leaders, colleagues, family, friends, media and listeners who have come forward to support her.
“Over the course of my career, I’m sure I’ve touched them in one way or another,” Jackson said. “I am honored because this is what I intend to do. Reach people and encourage them.
Like Jackson’s real ‘aunt’, she used this moment to offer advice: “Find something you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” “
When asked how the title of living legend fits him, Jackson warmly smiled, laughed and said, “I still have to come home and cook!” But it feels good !