A Memorial: Dr. Regnal John Jones
January 16, 1940 – January 9, 2016
Dr. Regnal John Jones, affectionally known as “Reggie”was Executive Director of the Illinois Institute of Technology-based, Chicago Area Health and Medical Careers Program, when he succumbed to a heart attack on January 9, 2016. He lived just a week shy of his 76th birthday.
Dr. Jones was born on the near north side of Chicago, in the Old Town neighborhood and was the youngest of five children. After his family moved to the western suburbs, Reggie attended Argo Community and Lyons Township High Schools. During his junior year of high school, Dr. Jones was admitted as an early entrant at the University of Chicago, where he would earn a BS in biology (63’), an MS in botany (63’), and a PhD in molecular biology in 1972.
Dr. Jones has had a remarkably varied career. His first professional appointment was as a research biologist at the IIT’s Research Institute in 1963. He later taught biology, plant physiology, experimental biology, and genetics at Loyola University and Chicago State University. From 1981 through 1986, Dr. Jones served Director of Health Education and Preventative Programs for the City of Chicago Department of Health, where he developed several nationally recognized community-based intervention programs in nutrition and communicable disease control.
In 1986, Dr. Jones returned to the IIT campus as Executive Director of the Chicago Area Health and Medical Careers Program (CAHMCP). CAHMCP is a “pipeline” program, with the goal of increasing the number of qualified minority matriculants to medical, dental, and other health profession schools. Program participants are provided with successive years of structured academics, counseling, motivational, and financial support until they reach their long-range careers goals. The CAHMCP pipeline extends from 6th grade through the final year of health professional school.
One of the most powerful statements about his life is that Dr. Jones was married to Angela 53 years, who he is survived by and his two adult children, and two grandchildren.