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By Glenda Graves | Portrait photo by Keith Branch

Joe Lloyd

Be Present Where Your Feet Are

Joe Lloyd was born in Fort Smith, but he spent much of his youth moving around to places such as Richardson, Texas, and Denver, Colorado. Eventually his family settled in Alma, Arkansas, where his father wanted to return for his last working years with Rheem. Joe describes his father, who he lost in 2022, as an authentic and present father. And he says of his mother, “She is truly a Proverbs 31 woman. She was all love while my dad was all truth. It taught me a little of both is a good thing.”


His parents were both deeply involved in the community and nonprofit organizations, giving Joe the opportunity to witness the rewarding pursuit of serving and giving back.


As a child, Joe wanted to be a flight surgeon. His father was third-generation military, and Joe thought he would surely follow in those footsteps. After graduating high school in Alma, Joe attended the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. With the idea of possibly going into medicine, he pursued a microbiology and chemistry degree while also being involved in Air Force ROTC.


After receiving his degree, however, he decided not to move forward with those plans and instead joined Tyson Foods in Springdale. Joe went on to have a successful 30-year career at Tyson Foods leading food safety, ethics and compliance teams, then eventually serving as vice president of technology at the Tyson location on Emma Avenue in downtown Springdale.


He recalls being at a local Christmas parade one year, seeing Bernice Jones and thinking about what an amazing woman she was and all the things her family had done for the community. “My family and I were already members of the Jones Center at the time,” he said. “I knew a lot of the board of directors, and I just never really got that out of my head.”

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Now, Joe has been named president and CEO of the Harvey & Bernice Jones Trust. Sometimes a dream job can be something that one isn’t quite sure is even an option. And it does seem that the opportunity to lead the Jones Trust was a calling Joe always had. When it presented itself, he jumped at it. “I love being able to give back here,” he said. “I am excited about being more of who God called me to be.”


Joe is grateful to the community for its continued support of the Jones Center, honoring the legacy of Harvey and Bernice Jones. He is thrilled about working alongside the Jones Center Trust Board of Directors and seizing the opportunity to lead the center into a new era of growth and impact. His hope is to see the Jones Center team continue enriching lives, partnering with other nonprofits and strengthening community bonds for years to come.

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He encourages those who haven’t been on-site recently — or ever before — to visit the 55-acre campus in downtown Springdale. “We invite you and your family to join us as members,” he said. “Your membership gives you access to numerous youth, adult and family programs. Your participation not only enriches your own life but also strengthens the community spirit of the Jones Center, where everyone can learn, play and thrive. We also need your feedback on your experiences at the center. It’s essential for us to improve and grow.”


Joe believes the Jones Center and the Jones Center for Nonprofits to be the perfect representation of the regional community, with full diversity and inclusion. “Everyone is excited to be here,” he said. “Just give us a chance, whether it’s for recreation, developing a new skill, family outings or unique themed events…we have so very much to offer.”


He explains, “As we enter the 29th anniversary year, we have big, bold plans for the center. These plans include improvements of our current amenities as well as brand-new features and spaces for recreation, learning and communal experiences. And although we have an endowment from Harvey and Bernice Jones to operate our Springdale and Rogers properties, we need new and existing philanthropic partnerships to realize this modernization and meet the needs of our growing and vibrant region.”

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Left: Joe Lloyd with Jones Center Board Member Archie Schaffer and Heather Chilson at the Downtown Springdale Street Dinner on June 8
Right: Joe and Michelle Lloyd with their daughters, Kade and Jordan, and son-in-law, Chris Rogers

Joe and his wife, Michelle, have two daughters, Jordan and Kade. They love spending quality time around the dinner table, in the pool and at the beach. He and Michelle are expecting their first grandchild this fall from Jordan and her husband, Chris. And they look forward to continuing the family tradition of being present for one another.


He said his father would always tell his children, “Be present where your feet are.” His father’s sayings eventually turned into mottos and what they now call the “Lloyd Family Rules.”


“I believe we are to be good stewards of our gifts, time and finances,” Joe said. “My dad used to tell me, ‘Your life should be about giving yourself away,’ which requires being observant to the needs around us and being present where your feet are. My advice, then, for others within our community is to be curious within your community and invest a portion of yourself where your gifts, time and money align.”


With his feet firmly planted in Northwest Arkansas, Joe is present and poised to lead The Jones Center in a spirit that would make Harvey and Bernice proud.


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