Moms in the Lou: Up Close with St. Louis City Treasurer Tishaura Jones

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1) Tell us about you! We know you’re a St. Louis local. 🙂

I’m a daddy’s girl, unapologetically black, and sometimes, I’m petty! I was born and raised in St. Louis. I’m the oldest of three girls, and the single mom of the most adorable twelve-year-old son, Aden. Catch his adventures on Twitter at #stuffadensays. I graduated from Affton High School, went to undergrad at Hampton University, and completed graduate school at St. Louis University.
 

2) Tell us about your job. What is the best part? What is the most difficult or frustrating part?

Being a citywide elected official is great, until the months leading up to an election. You really find out who your real friends and supporters are. I enjoy making connections for people, I feel like it’s what I do best and what I’m here for— to knock down barriers that inhibit people from reaching their full potential. I also enjoy the work I do for financial literacy and empowerment. I love the testimonies of our clients after hearing that they increased their credit scores or learned something new from one of our workshops.
 

3) Tell us about motherhood! Did you always want to be a mom? What about your birth story? 

Motherhood was an unexpected surprise that has brought me both joy and anxiety. I wanted to be a mom, but I never thought in a million years that I would be a single mom. My parents were married until my mother died in 2000. It’s definitely not the most ideal at times, but my family helps out a lot, and they help me make it work. The anxiety comes from raising a black son at a time when black men and women are losing their lives to police violence. I worry about him when he hangs out with his friends in the suburban white school district where he attends school. I worry about the off chance that he pisses off “that cop” or “that business owner,” and things escalate, and he becomes a hashtag.
 
My best friend, Jasmine, my dad, and my grandmother were with me when Aden was born. He was a week late, and I had to have a C-Section because he was turned the wrong way. Not breached, but facing down instead of up. I was in labor for 24 hours. I remember a Fresh Prince of Bel-Air marathon was on the TV. I also remember that Aden would only wake up for my dad and my grandmother. 

4) How do you balance motherhood with a hectic professional life?

Three things: Jesus, my iPhone, and bourbon! Plus, I have a shared calendar with my dad. All of my appointments appear on his calendar. He knows where I am every day. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing! Also, he’s retired and lives across the street from me. It’s great because Aden can spend the night there if I’m out of town or have late meetings. And, Aden keeps my dad young. They played a lot of basketball during the pandemic because neither one of them left our homes.
 
 

Tishaura Jones with her son, Aden

 

5) Tell us your favorite St. Louis hot spots! Date night? Moms’ night out? Mom and kid’s day out? 

If I had a boyfriend, I’d definitely have a favorite date night spot! Single men who can handle me, my kid, my crazy schedule, and profession are hard to come by. Also, the public nature of my job doesn’t allow me to hang out much. So, my mom squad, or my friends and I, will usually gather at someone’s home or meet for dinner. 
 

6) Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I see myself continuing to be a public servant, although I’m not sure where I will be. I’ve been in constant prayer on whether or not I’ll be running for Mayor again. I came too close not to seriously consider another run. Also in five years, Aden will be close to graduating from High School, so I assume we’ll spend our summers visiting universities. I’m hopeful he will follow in my footsteps and attend my alma mater, Hampton University, or another Historically Black College or University. 
 

7) What is your hope for St. Louis? What change do you wish you could see happen overnight?

My hope for St. Louis is that we can embrace racial equity, eradicate poverty, reimagine public safety, and improve our education system. Making those four investments would be a game changer for our region. I wish the gun violence in our community would stop overnight. My son and I go to sleep to the lullaby of gunshots in the distance more nights than we’d like to admit. A small piece of me dies every time we lose a child to gun violence.
 

8) What are the big stigmas moms are up against these days? How can we change the narrative?

The largest stigma we have is society’s expectations on us as superwomen. We hold the weight of the world on our shoulders while holding our kids on our hips. We can change the narrative by adding the word “No” to our vocabulary. It’s a full sentence. We don’t have to be everything to everyone.
 

9) What is the single most unexpected thing about motherhood for you personally?

I didn’t know about unconditional love until Aden came along. I didn’t know my heart could hold so much love! How could this little dude make me so mad one minute and make my heart melt the next? I also didn’t know that motherhood would make me into this super sensitive person who cries watching Amazon commercials! I also didn’t expect single motherhood to be so lonely at times. Stepping in and raising another man’s child isn’t for the faint of heart. I’ve yet to find the guy willing to step up to the plate. Maybe he’s out there somewhere, but he hasn’t found us yet. 
 
 

Tishaura Jones, St. Louis City TreasurerTishaura Jones is the first woman to hold the office of Treasurer. She is the chief investment and cash management officer of the city and oversees and manages the city’s parking division.   Since becoming Treasurer, Tishaura has increased transparency in city government, streamlined and modernized the parking division, improved returns on the city’s investments, increased the overall financial health of city residents by reducing the number of unbanked households, and started a citywide children’s savings program.

Prior to becoming Treasurer, Tishaura was a Missouri State Representative from 2008-2012 and was the first African American and First Female Assistant Minority Floor Leader.  

Tishaura enjoys an active volunteer career as a member of the St. Louis Metropolitan Alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.  She also sits on the boards of Wyman and People’s Community Action Corporation.

Born in St. Louis, Tishaura has a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Hampton University, a Master’s degree in Health Administration from the Saint Louis University School of Public Health, and is a graduate of the Executives in State and Local Government program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.  Prior to being elected Treasurer, Jones was employed as Vice-President of Municipal Finance for Blaylock Robert Van and as an adjunct faculty member at the Anheuser-Busch School of Business at Harris-Stowe State University.  

Tishaura is the proud mother of Aden.

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