The Jones years: 2004-2014

President James F. Jones, Jr. is set to retire on June 30, 2014, after a decade of service to Trinity College. What follows is a glimpse of his tenure through photographs and through the words of those who know him best.

Jones conducts a fall semester seminar, “The Emergence of the Modern Mind,” in 2008.

Jones conducts a fall semester seminar, “The Emergence of the Modern Mind,” in 2008.

“When we offered Jimmy the job as the 21st president back in 2004, I asked him, on behalf of the board, to enhance the academic reputation of Trinity College. He has done an outstanding job at Trinity because he has fulfilled exactly what we asked him to do. He has brought in outstanding young faculty and maintained our core of outstanding existing faculty.”
- Paul E. Raether ’68, P’93, ’96, ’01, Chair of the Board of Trustees

“I have been honored to serve with Jimmy for the past two years. He has demonstrated his love for my alma mater, his natural affection for the students, his highest regard for the faculty, his appreciation of our parents and alumni, his romance with railroads, and his taste for chocolate macaroons. I will miss Jimmy’s warmth, kindness, and largesse.”
- Mary Jo Keating ’74, Secretary of the College and Vice President for College Relations

“After four presidents in four years, Jimmy came to the rescue! He brought to Trinity the experience and wisdom accumulated over decades as a teacher, scholar, administrator, and college president. What a blessing to have the leadership and stability of his 10 years as our president.”
- Borden W. Painter, Jr. ’58, H’95, Professor of History, Emeritus; Former President of the College

Jones leads the way at the Vernon Social ribbon-cutting in September 2013.

Jones leads the way at the Vernon Social ribbon-cutting in September 2013.

“Among Jimmy’s most important achievements was recruiting the finest administrative team in generations. At a time when new faculty hiring was on hold across the country, Jimmy brought in a new dean of faculty and empowered her to seek the best young faculty she could find. This counterintuitive move by Jimmy is among his finest legacies and will enrich Trinity academics for decades.”
- Scott Reynolds ’63, P’92, H’11, Secretary of the College, Emeritus; Former Member, Board of Trustees

“Jimmy Jones, first and foremost, is a truly loving and principled man with vision, fortitude, and almost unbounded energy. Coupled with his extraordinary wife Jan, he is almost sui generis. He has an uncanny ability to be with students, faculty and staff, alumni, and college benefactors, whatever the opportunities or challenges. We will miss his presence as an accomplished scholar, a thoughtful leader, and a friend to all.”
- William C. Richardson, Ph.D. ’62, H’03; Member, Board of Trustees

“Jimmy is energetic, infectious, exuberant, and intellectually charged. His belief in and support for the faculty have kept the academic excellence of the College at the absolute highest level. It is admirable that with all the responsibilities of a College president that he has always found time each semester to teach a seminar. His passion for the students, the faculty, and the College is exemplary.”
- Nina McNeely Diefenbach ’80, Member, Board of Trustees

Professor Joan D. Hedrick, Charles A. Dana Professor of History, Joseph F. Wassong, Jr. ’59, and Jones attend the Shirley G. Wassong Memorial Lecture in European and American Art, Culture and History, which Hedrick delivered on April 23, 2012

Professor Joan D. Hedrick, Charles A. Dana Professor of History, Joseph F. Wassong, Jr. ’59, and Jones attend the Shirley G. Wassong Memorial Lecture in European and American Art, Culture and History, which Hedrick delivered on April 23, 2012

“No campaign can be successful without the support of the president. President Jones was actively involved; he was an energetic leader, always there for alumni gatherings, traveling extensively, and doing whatever he could to contribute to Trinity’s fundraising success. His leadership was absolutely critical to the excellent outcome of our six-year fundraising effort.”
- George Kellner ’64, Former Member, Board of Trustees; Former Tri-Chair, Cornerstone Campaign

“A respected leader among college presidents, Jimmy created financial discipline, improved governance, attracted talented faculty, and revitalized Development. He leaves an extraordinary legacy.”
- Mitch Merin ’75, Former Member, Board of Trustees

“My deepest thanks for your unsurpassed love for, and leadership of, Trinity College. … Your presidency is so extremely important and vital; you at the helm–miraculously (it seems) steering us past impossible obstacles.”
- Marjorie V. Butcher H’09, Professor of Mathematics, Emeritus

“The hallmark of Jimmy’s personality is that, for him, it is always first and foremost about the students, whom he teaches, nurtures, and supports in ways that are seldom visible to the public at large. He cares deeply about sending students beyond the United States and Europe for their life learning and their education. We will sorely miss his commitment to the Trinity concept of study abroad.”
- Milla Riggio, James J. Goodwin Professor of English

“He’s done so much for the infrastructure. The restoration of the Long Walk was a great achievement for the College, as were the Crescent Street Townhouses, the new roof on Austin Arts, and the Gates Quad. I think he’s done marvelously well.”
- Leslie Desmangles P’91, ’99, Professor of Religion and International Studies

Jones speaks with Elizabeth Gerber ’14 and Benjamin Rudy ’13 during the 2013 Homecoming football game. Jones’s wife, Jan, is at right.

Jones speaks with Elizabeth Gerber ’14 and Benjamin Rudy ’13 during the 2013 Homecoming football game. Jones’s wife, Jan, is at right.

“President Jones has been an integral part of our athletic team–he understands and appreciates the Division III NESCAC model and has been a great advocate for our coaches and student-athletes. We’re going to miss having him, Jan, and their dogs on the sidelines next year.”
- Robin Sheppard M’76, Professor of Education and Associate Director of Athletics

“President Jones has accomplished many things at Trinity, but rather than list specific issues, I would emphasize the ways in which he accomplished them. His sense of integrity and commitment to the academic enterprise of the liberal arts, to me, underlies everything else.”
- Cheryl Greenberg, Paul E. Raether Distinguished Professor of History

President James F. Jones, Jr., Trinity College’s 21st president, offers remarks during his inauguration on October 17, 2004

President James F. Jones, Jr., Trinity College’s 21st president, offers remarks during his inauguration on October 17, 2004

“Before President Jones arrived, Trinity had four different presidents in the space of four years. His steady leadership during his decade in the office not only settled the uncertainty but allowed both him and the College to achieve great things.”
- Kevin McMahon, John R. Reitemeyer Professor of Political Science

“For me and many others, President Jones has been a remarkable and inspirational mentor. His strong leadership touch will be felt at Trinity for years to come.”
- David Brown ’06, Ann Plato Fellow in English

“Throughout his tenure I have been continually amazed by how many students President Jones knows personally and how supportive he has been of them and their work. His enthusiastic encouragement has had profound impacts on many who will remain grateful to him and Trinity for the rest of their lives.”
- John Rose, College Organist; Chapel Music Director

“The support he has shown to Trinity’s rare book collections has made us the envy of our colleagues at other New England schools.”
- Richard Ring, Head Curator, Watkinson Library

“President Jones–Jimmy–made a special effort to seek my input regarding how Trinity could better respond to the survivors of sexual assault.”
- Laura Lockwood M’95, Director, Women & Gender Resource Action Center

“Soon after President Jones arrived at Trinity and while I was still a high school senior, I had the opportunity to meet him and perform Louis Vierne’s ‘Carillon de Westminster.’ I am so grateful for the support he has shown chapel music and organ music at the College and will always remain amazed that I arrived at Trinity under his presidency.”
- Chris Houlihan ’09, Artist-in-Residence, 2013-2014

“In 10 years of dedicated service to the College, President Jones has steadfastly fulfilled President Ogilby’s ideal of the ‘Personal College.’ ”
- Peter Ragosta ’15, Whitters Family Scholar

“The opportunity to take a class with President Jones was undoubtedly once in a lifetime. The profound wisdom that President Jones shared with me reshaped my worldview and will stay with me for the rest of my life.”
- Meredith Munro ’15

quest_JIMMYTAL_rough

Jones takes part in the inaugural Quest pre-orientation trip to Killarney Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada, in August 2005.

“I will be very sad to see you go, but am so grateful for the incredible way you have enhanced my education and the way you have helped shape me into an adult–from moments on Quest … and Tibet! … to the classroom to the Quad. You have helped make Trinity a wonderful and safe place to learn and grow.”
- Mina Aiken ’11

“Words cannot express our praise to you, the faculty and staff for [our daughter’s] extraordinary four years at Trinity. … Your ability to touch the lives of your students in such a personal way is extraordinary.”
- Jaye and Joe Semrod P’12, Parents of Kelsey Semrod ’12

MetroHartford Alliance President and CEO Oz Griebel presents Jones with the Rising Star Award in January 2014 in honor of Jones’s leadership and service to the College, the city, and the region.

MetroHartford Alliance President and CEO Oz Griebel presents Jones with the Rising Star Award in January 2014 in honor of Jones’s leadership and service to the College, the city, and the region.

“President Jones has made a difference through what he has done … to make Hartford a better place. He is a down-to-earth person with a heart of gold.”
- Hyacinth Yennie P’02, ’06, President, Maple Avenue Neighborhood Revitalization Zone

“President Jones has been a quiet and determined champion of the Hartford Youth Scholars Foundation, making a difference one student at a time. He has done the work but not asked for the recognition he deserves. Now is the time that he should receive it.”
- Roxanna Booth Miller, Co-Director and Chief Development Officer, Hartford Youth Scholars Foundation

Photos by John Atashian, Al Ferreira, Nick Lacy, and John Marinelli

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