Art enthusiast Jerri Jones honored with memorial library

Carol B. “Jerri” Jones (1939-2017) was honored last Thursday with the dedication of the Jerri Jones Memorial Art Library in Phillips Hall.
In her remarks of Jones’s contribution to the university, art professor Teresa Valero said, “her generosity and love of art has greatly influenced the TU School of Art, Design and Art History.”
The library will display Jones’s large collection of art books and magazines, her ceramic work and many other pieces of art and crafts that she collected while traveling the world.
In her lifetime Jones travelled to every state, all seven continents and more than 100 countries.
“What is most obvious to us,” Valero said of the collection, “is her impeccable taste and her understanding of a simple design and the visual power that it possesses.”
Jones’s husband Jenk said that Jones was excited to share her life’s collection with the TU art school.
The contents of the library are only the latest of Jones’s several donations to the school, including funding three monetary awards for students each year and the donation for a new kiln.
Jones received her master’s degree in Art at TU in 1984 with a specialty in ceramics. Along with her studies, Jones served as the main researcher for Tom Manhart’s international Eloquent Object exhibition.
Jones was also a docent at Philbrook and Gilcrease museums for more than a dozen years.
In addition to her academic and professional career, Valero noted Jones’s extensive philanthropic work.
“She was either a board member, a founding member, a vice-president or president of countless organizations such as Planned Parenthood chapter, Tulsa’s Junior League, Leadership, Women in Communications chapter and many more,” Valero said.
Jones was also the first female president of the church she attended with her husband.
Jones was named Citizen of the Year for the Tulsa branch of the National Association of Social Workers, Volunteer of the Year for Tulsa Hearing Auxiliary and received the Distinguished Service Award from The University of Tulsa’s Kendall College of Arts & Sciences.
She volunteered at the Tulsa Botanic Garden, Tulsa Junior College, OETA, Woolaroc
Museum and Brady Heights District.
In 1968, she was named one of the Outstanding Young Women of America.
“TU is proud to be the new home for Jones’s art library,” Valero said. “We see the Jerri Jones Memorial Library as a place that will encourage students, faculty and members of the Tulsa community to explore, learn and inspire their work.”

Post Author: Kayleigh Thesenvitz

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