Jerry Jones – 2017 President of the Year
Jerry Jones, Legatus’ 2017 President of the Year, has an undeniable love for his faith, and relishes his servant leadership in many realms.
Jones, 67, past president of Legatus’ Indianapolis Chapter and a Legate for 11 years, credits the chapter’s previous presidents, membership directors, and chaplains with establishing the foundation for a vibrant organization.
Last year, Jones retired from Cannon IV, the family business he cofounded with his father, Richard, in 1974. He is still busy though, serving on various boards and volunteering in the community. He recently spoke with Legatus magazine.
How did it feel to be honored as Legatus’ President of the Year?
It was flattering. The Indianapolis Chapter has been so strong for so long, I was just so humbled by the fact there were so many great presidents before me that really just put this chapter on the fast track.
What makes the Indianapolis Chapter so vibrant?
We begin with Mass, as all Legatus chapters do. Second, we always have a healthy number of people, and we try to really make it fun. That’s one of the things that I think all organizations have to do. You have to make it fun so when people get there, they’re laughing, and really just having a good time. We know we’re going to deliver a good spiritual message, but we’re also making it fun and lively, so when people come to our organization who are prospective members, they leave and they’re laughing, having fun and they want to come back.
How would you describe your experiences with Legatus over the years?
Legatus is just a fantastic organization for my wife Peggy and me. It affords us the chance to be with very likeminded people. We also really enjoy that it is a planned date night. We get to see wonderful friends. We always get a great spiritual message and go to Mass. We get a great dinner and a speaker. We look forward to it every month.
What do you love about the Catholic faith?
I identify with the Catholic faith. It has a style. I love the fact that from early on, you’re part of a parish and you’re part of a community. It’s a strong church, but it’s the whole neighborhood and the school and everything. It’s a religion that fits my wife and I like a glove.
What led you to start the family business with your father?
My father and I started the company back in 1974. When we started off, we were just selling typewriter ribbons and carbon paper. My father passed away, and I took over the business in 1978. As the industry started to change, we changed, and we got into the technology part of the business. My dad’s dream was to have all his sons in the business. I have three younger brothers, and that’s why the company is called Canon IV because there are four boys in the family and all four are in the business. Now my son is in the business.
How are you enjoying retirement?
I absolutely love it. I’m very busy with being on several boards. But for the first time in my life, I get a chance to dictate my day and do what I want to prioritize for the day. So yes, it’s wonderful.
What is servant leadership?
I think it’s a philosophy of wanting to give back, to nurture and teach, and be a servant of the organization – humbled that you work for a good organization, and flattered that you actually have a chance to be a leader.
Do you have any hobbies?
I love to bike, run, and hike. My wife and I also love to travel. We enjoy the theater and we like to read. We stay pretty busy.