The Jesse White Tumblers were created in 1959 to provide a positive alternative for inner-city kids. Team members must stay away from gangs, drug, alcohol, stay in school and maintain a minimum “C” average. The team consists of male and female participants as young as age 6.

The team, with 7 units, gives more than 1,500 performances each year at major sporting events and community, business, and charity functions. The Jesse White Tumblers attract national and international attention and have performed throughout the United States, Canada, Hong Kong, Bermuda, Belize, China, Israel, Tokyo, Japan, and Zagreb, Croatia. The team has also been featured in commercials, national television shows, and motion pictures.

Because the organization requires its student athletes to maintain at least a “C” average, team members and trainees who fall below this standard must attend tutoring classes or show proof that they are enrolled in a tutoring program. Our program assists with homework, encourages independent reading, improves writing skills, spelling and handwriting, and practices basic math facts.The program also helps to improve science and social studies grades through study skills and develops a higher level of thinking skills through group and individual work.

About Jesse White

Until his retirement in 2023, Jesse White was the longest serving Illinois Secretary of State. He was elected to the post on November 3, 1998 by a margin of over 450,000 votes. He was sworn into office on January 11, 1999. He has served as the 37th Secretary of State since 1999. He is the longest serving and first African-American to hold this position.

Prior to his election as IL Secretary of State, White was the Recorder of Deeds of Cook County, the nation’s second largest Recorder of Deeds office. He was elected to the post in 1992 and re-elected in 1996.

Prior to his election as Recorder, Jesse White served 16 years in the Illinois General Assembly representing the most culturally, economically and racially diverse district in Illinois. As a state legislator, he built a solid record for fighting crime, improving education and helping senior citizens. White was chairman of the Illinois House Committee on Human Services. He was an active member of the education committee and the select committees on children and aging. His community service office remains open today as a constant source of information and help for the neighborhood in which he has lived and worked all his life.

Since March 1996, Jesse White has served as Chicago’s 27th Ward Democratic Committeeman.

Born in Alton, Illinois in 1934, Jesse White now lives on Chicago’s near-north side. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in 1957 from Alabama State College (now Alabama State University), where he was a two-sport star earning all-conference honors in baseball and basketball. In May 1995, White was inducted into the Southwestern Athletic Conference Hall of Fame. He was an all-city baseball and basketball star at Chicago’s Waller High School (now Lincoln Park Academy) and was inducted into the Chicago Public League Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in June 1995.

Jesse White served our country as a paratrooper in the United States Army’s 101st Airborne Division, Army Reserves and a member of the Illinois National Guard. He played professional baseball with the Chicago Cubs organization, which was followed by a 33-year career with the Chicago public school system as a teacher and administrator.

He was a gymnast as a kid, taught gymnastics in college and worked as a gymnastics coach and teacher for the Chicago Park District YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago.

Official Web Site for Illinois Secretary of State