JACKSONVILLE, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Jacksonville native and longtime health executive Donald “Don” C. Jones, is retiring on May 7, as CEO of the Jacksonville-based American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), after leading the organization since 1997.
“I have known Don Jones since I was a fellow, and he has been a constant presence in my endocrine career,” said Pauline M. Camacho, MD, FACE, current President of AACE, and Professor of Medicine and Director of Loyola University Osteoporosis and Metabolic Bone Disease Center. “He was there when I first joined the Board of Directors, when I was appointed Secretary, and finally, now as the President of AACE. Many years ago, I jokingly asked him to wait until I became president before retiring, and I’m glad he did. Don has done a remarkable job at AACE, and all of us on the AACE Board of Directors will miss his leadership as well as his friendship.”
Jones has dedicated his more than 47-year career to medical association management, serving as the CEO of AACE for the past 20 years, and as the former Executive Director and CEO of the Florida Medical Association (FMA), where he spent the first 29 years of his career (1967-1996).
“The opportunity to work with AACE since its inception has been the highlight of my entire career in organized medicine,” said Jones. “To me, endocrinologists and AACE are unique in its mission and role in organized medicine. Endocrinologists are among the brightest of the brightest of physicians, totally dedicated to meeting the everyday needs and challenges in providing the best possible care to their patients with endocrine disorders.”
“It’s been an honor to be part of such a phenomenal organization from the very beginning,” Jones continued. “The tremendous growth and influence of AACE – both domestically and internationally – has earned AACE’s growing recognition as truly the ‘Voice of Clinical Endocrinology.’ It has been a special honor to work with the leadership, Board of Directors, the Executive Committee and the many dedicated members who have and continue to serve on AACE committees and task forces. Their combined contributions are immeasurable. Suffice to say, I approach the end of my time with AACE with mixed emotions. I will truly miss working with this great organization and the most talented and dedicated staff anyone could ever hope for. They have played a huge role in AACE’s achievements and have my deepest admiration and appreciation for the full support they have provided to me personally for the past 20 years.”
“I leave behind my best wishes and confidence that AACE will continue to grow and achieve new milestones of success in the future. My thanks to everyone for allowing me to be part of the AACE family.”
During his tenure at AACE, Jones was responsible for the overall daily management of personnel at the AACE headquarters in Jacksonville and supervision of its policies; oversaw important health care legislation; helped to initiate and expand AACE scientific programs and activities of AACE and its affiliated educational organization – the American College of Endocrinology (ACE), as well as AACE’s for-profit subsidiary, AACECORP.
He guided the Association through exponential growth, from approximately 2,600 members in 1997 to more than 7,500 members today from 22 domestic chapters and 16 international chapters.
„My opportunities in organized medicine were made possible through Don’s willingness to take a chance on me in 1997 as his Deputy,” said Jay Millson, Executive Vice President of the Florida Academy of Family Physicians (FAFP). “He will always be my mentor and an individual who I hold in the highest regard. The “Counting Crows” version of Mr. Jones may have had a different meaning, but it always reminds me of the days I spent just ‘Mr. Jones and me.’ Here’s to a great man who will be remembered for an outstanding career.”
A strong leader and a consummate professional, Jones championed the rights of patients with diabetes and other metabolic conditions, and the physicians who care for them.
Many AACE “firsts” were established under his leadership including AACE’s 2011 landmark lead in recognizing obesity as a disease, and the American Medical Association’s (AMA) affirmation two years later. Other firsts include AACE’s Clinical Practice Guidelines being featured in the National Guidelines Clearinghouse; the start of the annual Capitol Hill Congressional Visits with lawmakers in 1999; the formation of AACEPAC, an independent organization dedicated to promoting congressional candidates who share the mission of AACE; the creation of a Socioeconomics Conference to assist members with the business and regulatory side of their endocrinology practice; the establishment of a physician placement service now known as AACE Endocrine Careers, and the debut of AACE Online News, an e-newsletter to keep members better informed of policy and other important news, and many others.
In addition, Jones served on the Advisory Committee to the Executive Vice President of the AMA from 1983 to 1990; and on the Board of Directors of the American Association of Medical Society Executives (AAMSE), serving as its president in 1989. In 2001, he was awarded the AMA Executive Achievement Award for his service.
On January 15, 2009, Jones was one of the 155 aboard the U.S. Airways flight 1549 that landed safely in the Hudson River in New York, known as the “Miracle on the Hudson.”
Jones and his wife of 52 years, Sharon, have two children; Amy Jones Bruns and Donald Jones II, and five grandsons.
About the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)
The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) represents more than 7,500 endocrinologists in the United States and abroad and is the largest professional association of clinical endocrinologists in the world. The majority of AACE members are certified in endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism and concentrate on the treatment of patients with endocrine and metabolic disorders including diabetes, thyroid disorders, osteoporosis, growth hormone deficiency, cholesterol disorders, hypertension and obesity. Visit our site at www.aace.com.
About the American College of Endocrinology (ACE)
The American College of Endocrinology (ACE) is the educational and scientific arm of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE). ACE is the leader in advancing the care and prevention of endocrine and metabolic disorders by: providing professional education and reliable public health information; recognizing excellence in education, research and service; promoting clinical research and defining the future of Clinical Endocrinology. For more information, visit www.aace.com/college.