FROM PRESIDENT DR. MIKE SMITH

Dr. Mike Smith, President - 903.589.7106 - msmith@jacksonville-college.edu

JC HIRES DIRECTOR OF ALUMNI RELATIONS

With the addition of Randy Decker to the administrative team, Jacksonville College is expanding its alumni outreach efforts. Randy will take the newly created position of Director of Alumni Relations. While the job description is wide ranging in scope, Randy’s primary focus will be to reconnect with alumni on a personal level and enable them to connect with each other as well as with Jacksonville College.

Randy is a retired educator with twenty-nine years of service in Texas schools in Jacksonville, Dallas, Mt. Pleasant, Gilmer, and Tyler. The majority of those years were spent as a choral director with two years as a junior high math teacher. He is a 1974 graduate of Canton High. He holds two Associate degrees from Jacksonville College, a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from Dallas Baptist University, and a Master of Science in Education from Stephen F. Austin. He holds educational certifications in Texas in All-Level Music Education (K-12) and Mathematics (4-8) as well as a Principal’s Certification.

Randy has been married for 35 short years to Gay Lynn. Gay is a registered nurse who worked in home health for 17 years and in outreach and education in the medical field for 15 years. She has been an avid volunteer for the American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association. She currently works at East Texas Medical Center in Athens in the education department. Randy and Gay have two children, Ryan and Melissa. Ryan is a design engineer for Bell Helicopter. He and his lovely wife, Katie, have two amazing daughters, Chloe (3) and Ellie (2). Melissa works in marketing for American National Bank of Texas and has an equally amazing son, Jeremiah (3).

Randy has maintained close ties to Jacksonville College in the forty years since graduating in 1976. He returned to the school to work as Admissions Counselor from 1979-1982. For the last six years, he has served as President of the Bearden-Bonner-Gaylor Chapter of the Alumni Association and as a member of the Executive Board of the Alumni Association.

When asked about his relationship with Christ and the role Jacksonville College has played in his Christian walk, Randy was eager to share his experience.

Christ came into my heart a little over 51 years ago. He’s been working to rescue me from myself ever since. My life verse is Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” He’s been putting the brakes on me for decades. How amazing that in all these years He continues to bring just the right person with just the right words and just the right opportunities. More amazing still that when exposed to His Word, I am changed from the inside out.

I am very happy to be closely connected to Jacksonville College again. I sat next to the jaguar on top of the coach’s office and watched Chief Johnson rain down jumpers on frustrated opponents when my dad, George Decker, was a ministerial student here in 1961-1962. I was a student here in 1974-1976 and was introduced to my personal life ministry when I finally had opportunity to be in one of Gerald Orr’s great JC choirs. I returned and worked in the Admissions Office in 1979-1982 in hopes of bringing others to find what I found here. Here I am again with the mission of reconnecting our family so that we can reclaim and rekindle our part in the mission and ministry of our College. I am excited to return and represent Jacksonville College where I was mentored and where I developed lifelong friendships. I’m a Jag for life.

Randy can be reached at his JC office at (903) 589-7143, on his cell phone at (903) 790-1700, or by email at rdecker@jacksonville-college.edu.

Randy Decker, Jacksonville College Director of Alumni Relations

NEW ALUMNI LIAISON

Jean Galyean is the new Alumni Liaison at Jacksonville College, filling the position of Neatha Cagle upon her retirement. Jean’s roots with Jacksonville College go back to the 1960’s when her father, Leon Gaylor, was a Bible teacher and chair of the religion department at the College for 28 years. In 1970-1972, Jean was a student at Jacksonville College, graduating with an Associate of Arts Degree. After receiving a Bachelor’s Degree from Stephen F. Austin State University, Jean began a 36 year career in teaching in Jacksonville. She is married to Paul Galyean, JC alumnus and current Director of Financial Aid at the College. The Galyeans have two children, Leigh Parker and Chad Galyean, and are active me