A huge supporter of education, Jordan is determined to ensure better access to higher education in Sonoma County. For six generations his family farmed plums, peaches and berries on their land across from Ragle Ranch Park in Sebastopol, where Jordan was raised. He attended Park Side Elementary, Pine Crest Elementary, Brook Haven Middle School, Analy High School and Laguna High School, of which he is a graduate.
Jordan postponed the completion of his high school education for a time so he could work full-time to help support his single mom. While later completing high school at Laguna, he was simultaneously enrolled at SRJC, where he earned certification as an Emergency Medical Technician, a qualification that enabled him to work full-time in the Emergency Department at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital.
As the first elected Latino trustee on the Junior College Board – and only the third Latino trustee in SRJC’s history – Jordan takes pride in his heritage. His grandmother, a Puerto Rican, married his grandfather, Sonoma County-born and bred, while he was stationed there in the U.S. Army. Jordan’s mother, Edie, was born in Puerto Rico.
The Junior College Board is not new to Jordan. As a former Student Trustee – the voice of more than 36,000 students in the Junior College District – Jordan proposed a plan involving reduced school fees, equal representation on the Board and financial oversight. In 2014, Jordan was elected to the West County seat on the Board, which makes him the first former Student Trustee who was later elected to the SRJC Board. His colleagues elected him Vice President of the Board in 2016.
Jordan graduated from the Junior College with highest honors. Selected as valedictorian, he gave the commencement speech. Jordan then transferred to University of California, Berkeley, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a minor in Global Poverty.
Jordan is the founder and executive director of Children’s Humanitarian International (CHI), a nonprofit grass-roots organization that serves as an advocate for sustainable education and which provides educational opportunities and school supplies to children in developing countries. In addition, CHI runs a Summer Abroad program for Sonoma County high school students, sending a small group – most on scholarships – to study, work, and get five priceless weeks of first-hand exposure to developing countries at the CHI Academy in Kenya.
Among the numerous scholarships and awards from both SRJC and UC Berkeley that Jordan has received are the Cal Alumni Leadership Award and – for his work in the developing world – the Blum Center for Developing Economies Fellowship.
Beyond his work on the SRJC Board and for Children’s Humanitarian International, Jordan serves on the Board of West County Community Services, a multi-service agency for western Sonoma County that provides a range of counseling and support services for seniors, adults, youth and children.
Jordan is married to Jennifer Branham-Burns, the co-owner of Laguna Farm, just south of Sebastopol, whose Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) program serves over 400 Sonoma County families with produce boxes. In addition to their son, Cody, a high school student, Jordan is father to two step-sons from a previous marriage – Joe, a student at SRJC, and Ezekiel, who is also still in high school.
“As a young leader and an advocate for students, faculty and staff, I am putting my experience and passion to work for our entire community,” says Jordan. “We are all in this together; let’s together make the changes that will make Santa Rosa Junior College better than ever.”