Mr. Gerry Jones
Advisor Board Member
Gerry Jones’ curriculum vitae is most unorthodox. He was raised during the Depression on a farm in northern Indiana; he went to work on the night shift for Holsum Bakery at age eleven. He left home at age thirteen to seek more permanent work in the southern states.
Mr. Jones joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1942. He served six plus years in the First Marine Division during World War II and the Korean War. Gerry was a sergeant in the elite Marine Corps Scouts and Snipers, and fought the Japanese across the Pacific. He was wounded in action, with 40% disability, and received the Purple Heart.
Following WWII he lived in north China, where he studied martial arts under China’s three foremost self-defense masters. Mr. Jones taught self-defense and survival skills in the First Marine Division during the Korean War (1950-1952). He also taught professional Judo for twenty years in the United States, and he was on the National Board of the Judo Black Belt Federation of America for thirteen years.
Gerry became interested in extreme terrain architecture in China during the 1940’s. This led to his primary life’s work in architecture. He is totally self-taught in architecture and structural engineering. His architectural career spans sixty-four years (1952-2016) during which he has designed 323 luxury residences on mountain terrain. His work is recognized nationally and internationally. He has a new project on the drawing board at present. Gerry taught graduate architects extreme terrain architecture for seventeen years at Frank Lloyd Wright Taliesin West School of Architecture.
In a joint-venture with Tom Darlington and K.T. Palmer from 1957 to 1959, Mr. Jones designed and laid-out the master land plan for the newly formed Town of Carefree. He wrote the architectural guidelines, and designed and built the first two homes in Carefree. During his tenure as Planning & Zoning Commissioner for the Carefree area, (1983-1987), Mr. Jones wrote the Hillside Architectural Ordinance for Maricopa County.
He received an invitation from the Chinese government to return to China in 1984 to lecture on extreme terrain architecture. During Gerry’s return to China, he and his lovely wife, Leslie, acquired a large private collection of Chinese contemporary art. A portion of their collection has been featured in special exhibitions at the Phoenix Art Museum.
In 2005 Gerry became concerned about the political direction America was taking. He began writing position papers and lecturing in military education venues such as Virginia Military Institute, Hillsdale College, and the National World WWII Museum in New Orleans.
Mr. Jones is one of the original founders of The Veterans Directory and is committed to the assistance of military veterans and their families.
Last year Mr. Jones was awarded the Semper Fidelis Award from the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation for his lifetime achievements.
September 2016, Images Arizona Article