Prestage was on of sixteen children born on August 12, 1931, in Hutton, Louisiana to proud parents Brudis Leroy Limar, Sr. and Sallie Bell Johnson Limar.
The family later moved to Alexandria, Louisiana, where she received the majority of her education, graduating as valedictorian from Peabody High School at the age of 16. Jewel accepted Christ at an early age and was baptized at True Vine Missionary Baptist Church in Alexandria.
Prestage went to earn her Bachelors from Southern University in Baton, Rouge in 1951, then the Masters degree from University of Iowa in 1952 and at the age of 22, her PhD in 1954. During her graduate education, Jewel married James in 1953 upon his return from military service in Korea.
Jewel began her illustrious teaching career at Prairie View A&M University in 1954 and after two years she returned Southern University as a faculty member, subsequently becoming department chair and then dean of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, a position she held until her retirement in 1989. In recognition of her contributions, Southern conferred upon her the status of Distinguished Professor Emeritus. Under her leadership and mentoring, a generation of students received academic preparation that led them to graduate and professional schools. Those students represent 45 PhDs and over 200 lawyers, judges, elected officials, administrators, commissioned military officers, and business executives. After retiring from Southern, Jewel returned to Prairie View A&M University as professor of political science and subsequently, dean of the Benjamin Banneker Honors College the first of its kind at an HBCU.
Funeral Arrangements for Dr. Jewel Prestage who passed on August 3, 2014 in Houston is set for Saturday, August 9, 2014 at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, 3826 Wheeler Avenue, Houston, beginning with the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Ivy Beyond the Wall Ceremony at 1:30 pm. Viewing runs from 2 pm - 3 pm at the church with the service beginning at 3 pm.
Prestage is survived by her husband of 60 years, Dr. James Jordan Prestage; five children, Terri Prestage-White (Patrick), James Grady Prestage (Fheryl), Eric Warren Prestage, Karen Prestage Washington (Lionel) and Jay Wilkins Prestage; two brothers, George Limar (Sonja) and Eugene Limar; two sisters, Annetta Limar Brock (Warren) and Ordia Limar Gee (Albert); nine grandchildren, one great-grandchild; many nieces & nephews, cousins, godchildren and friends. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Jewel Prestage Award in Political Science, c/o The University of Iowa Foundation, P.O. Box 4550, Iowa City, IA 52244-4550 www.UIFoundation.org; or to The Jewel Limar Prestage Mentorship Award, c/o National Conference of Black Political Scientists, 14000 Hwy 82 West, MVSU 5098, Itta Bena, MS 38941-1400 www.ncobps.org/?page=PrestageAward.
Condolences may be sent to: The Jewel Prestage Family, c/o Sugar Land Mortuary, 1818 Eldridge Road, Sugar Land, TX 77478. Let us continue to keep the entire Prestage family in our thoughts and prayers.
For more information contact the Mortuary at 281-277-1818.