Harley Jones is director of emergency services at the Central Illinois Chapter of the American Red Cross, where he heads up disaster planning and relief services, services to the Armed Forces and international services to a 10-county jurisdiction, and oversees the disaster initiatives of five other Red Cross chapters. Because Jones leads by example, volunteers, co-workers and others follow with confidence.
Jones has been deployed to more than five national disasters and served on an evaluation team seeking to improve relief operations. When Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, Jones took leadership and trained volunteers to process incoming evacuees. He directed and prepared facilities where victims could be housed, worked with police departments to ensure safety, and worked with medical facilities to ensure healthcare for evacuees. His effective leadership engaged people in the process while maintaining a spirit of cooperation.
Jones was promoted to government relations liaison manager through the American National Red Cross and was recognized by FEMA after Hurricane Katrina for “exemplary performance” during the unprecedented disaster. The State of Illinois acknowledges his leadership every time it requests him to serve in the State Emergency Operations Center during disasters.
Under Jones’ leadership, tens of thousands of gift items have been sent to our military troops overseas. He chairs the FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter program for Peoria, Marshall, Stark and Woodford counties, and works with the Heart of Illinois Homeless Continuum of Care.
He is a member of the Illinois State Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters, the Peoria Area World Affairs Council and the Americorps Alumni Association, and has volunteered with the Children’s Home of Illinois, Tri-County Urban League and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Peoria. He is also an instructor at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Bradley University.
Visionary and inclusive, Harley Jones brings together different constituencies and leads them to accomplish common goals. He demonstrates the kind of leadership that is needed in our changing and diverse community. iBi