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2015 READERS’ CHOICE: Man of the Year Terry Jones

Terry Jones Goat DaysMany have shared in the highlights and positive headlines of Millington, Tennessee in 2014.
Men and women of Flag City have made decisions in City Hall for additional growth along Highway 51 and Veterans Parkway. Meanwhile others have helped launched Millington Municipal Schools with Millington Central High School, Millington Middle School, E.A. Harrold Elementary and Millington Elementary School.
Behind the scenes involved in helping make those moments come to life was Farmers Insurance agent Terry Jones. An agent by day, in his free time, Jones is mayor of Millington.
And his work at both jobs earned him enough votes to be the 2015 Millington Star Readers’ Choice Man of the Year.
“It is a total surprise to me,” he said. “And it’s an honor. We’ve lived here 20 years now and this is the first time I’ve been recognized by The Millington Star. So I’m really thrilled and honored.
“It’s (2013-14) been busy considering they keep saying you’re a part-time mayor now,” Jones added. “I’ve found out there’s no such thing as a part-time elected official. Being an elected official and being in the mayor position, it has been a busy two years. And having to carry another job too, trying to keep up with the family it has been challenging at times.”
Jones, the father of four, has two children in college, a child in elementary school and another in middle school. His wife Mary is a teacher in the Millington Municipal School system.
Being a part of Millington government in some form for about a decade, Jones had a personal interest in all the changes going on in Flag City since 2013.
He was elected back in the position of mayor in 2012 just in time for a new form of government which includes a city manager. About the same time, residents of Millington voted to form it’s own school system.
“2014, that was a busy year too,” Jones said. “We had a lot of things going like working on a new form of government. Trying to get a full-time city manager in here is now the goal. We’ve been working on that in 2014.
“Of course one of the big things we did last year, we have our own school system,” he continued. “Millington Municipal School system was a lot of hours sitting with attorneys, county school board and everybody else trying to get the paperwork done on that. I’m glad it came to fruition. I’m excited things turned out so well.”
Jones has worked along side interim City Manager Chris Dorsey and MMS Superintendent Dr. David Roper on major decisions.
Other roles in his part-time job is keeping in contact with the seven aldermen and seven school board members. Jones also saw a need to create revenue streams for the city and school system.
“The Millington Education Foundation was sitting dormant for a while,” he noted. “I talked to a couple of people including Cary Vaughn. I told him that’s something we need to get back off the ground. He took it and ran with it. And look at it now, it gave back about $11,000 to our schools back in December.”
As for the city, Jones’ vision of growth on Veterans Parkway is starting to take shape with arrival of CTI bringing a flight training school.
“I think we have some exciting things that will be out in the news real soon,” Jones said.
With so much going on at City Hall, Jones hired some full-time help at his insurance office located at 7807 Church Street in Millington. After not being reelected mayor in 2008, Jones’ neighbor Danny Brown introduced him to the insurance industry.
In four years Jones has grown that business in the area.
From his job at Farmers to City Hall, Jones doesn’t mind being in the background as long as customers and residents get what they need.
“Ronald Reagan said, ‘There’s no limit to what a man can do, or where he can go if he doesn’t mind who gets the credit,’” he said. “I don’t care who gets the credit. I’m here to see the city grow and get the things they need and expect from their local government. If we can continue to do that and I can keep a majority of the people happy, then I have accomplished my goals.”
Jones’ goal after he retired from the Navy in 1994 was to find a place to call home and raise his family. Millington has become that “blessing.”
“We love Millington,” Jones concluded. “We had the opportunity to go anywhere in Shelby County. It seemed like God said, ‘You guys need to go ahead and stay there.’ We’ve been blessed ever since. Millington is definitely home.”
For more information on Farmers Insurance, call 873-4200.

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February 2015
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