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UAM’s Jay Jones Honored as Arkansas Baptist “Father of the Year”

June 19th, 2015 by

imageJay Jones, UAM’s interim chancellor, and a deacon at First Baptist Church, has been named the Arkansas Baptist News (ABN) 2015 Father of the Year.

He was nominated by his 21-year-old son, Brooks Jones, as part of the ABN A Tribute to Godly Fathers essay contest.

For his nomination essay, Brooks Jones submitted an article he had written in honor of his father. In the post, he recounts all the ways his father has provided for his family and set a godly example.  “Yes, Dad has always met our physical needs. Yes, Dad has always encouraged and challenged us spiritually,” he wrote. “But maybe even more meaningful than that, Dad reflects the image of Christ in a way that makes the idea of a loving Father who unconditionally loves me not so far-fetched. Through the way my dad treats my mother and simply lives his life on a daily basis, it is much easier for me to grasp the idea of a heavenly Father who is ultimately The Provider, whose love for me took Him to the cross.”

People that know Jones family will ask if the essay was written during Jay’s recent medical crisis: No, it was posted online, last year, then revised for Father’s Day.

After almost 8 years at the University of Arkansas at Monticello , serving as vice chancellor of finance and administration, Jones had recently been appointed as interim chancellor for the University.

On May 1, Jones became ill while attending a meeting at Southern Arkansas University and went to the medical center in Magnolia. From there he was air lifted to a hospital in Little Rock where he had emergency surgery to repair an aortic dissection. “It was a few days after the surgery before I became aware of the chronology of events and realized the gravity of the situation”, Jones said. “The doctors were not giving the family much assurance that I would make it through the surgery on that Friday night. But, I am very grateful for the wonderful care that I received and am convinced that the prayers of so many of my friends and family figured into the outcome.”

Jones returned to work on June 8 on a limited basis and plans to resume his duties full-time around the first of July.
He and his wife, Karyn, have four children.

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