Jesse has more than 30 years experience in international humanitarian assistance, development, and refugee protection. Served as a Peace Corps volunteer long ago in Africa as part of the national team that created the U.S. refugee program after the fall of Saigon. He helped establish national refugee resettlement programs at the Federal level, and helped communities and voluntary agencies resettle refugees. He also helped the National Council of Churches expand services to refugees and advised the Ford Foundation regarding their funding priorities in international refugee assistance and protection. Jesse was the director of two Washington-based non-governmental organizations and served as the senior policy advisor on refugee affairs to the Department of State.