Jackie's late husband was a judge at the Illinois State Court. She appreciated that he never brought work home with him.
Jackie is very protective about her family, especially her son. She is reluctant to believe in her son's corrupt behavior and is hopeful Alicia and her son will reunite and once again become a family. Although she has good intentions, she often comes off as "crazy" when using unconventional tactics to "help" her loved ones, such as allowing her grandchildren to visit their father behind Alicia's back on many occasions throughout the duration of Peter's sentence.She also heard Zach listening to "muslim music", and thought that his girlfriend Becca had gotten him to be rebelious. Jackie snooped through his room, as she does with Grace's, and found evidence that Zach knew about his father's sex scandal and destroyed it.
Later when Alicia decided to separate from Peter, Jackie became very angry and accused her daughter-in-law of being selfish. She later tried to manipulate her grandchildren, causing Alicia to forbid her to see them without her approval.