Lubbock Christian University (LCU) has received a generous donation of one million dollars from the Helen Jones Foundation, Inc. to establish the Helen De Vitt Jones Endowed Chair of Fine Arts. The gift will benefit the LCU Department of Communication and Fine Arts to support hiring and retaining highly qualified faculty to ensure excellence in the classroom and in the performing arts through special research and projects that provide exceptional experiential learning opportunities for students.
Dr. Laurie Doyle has been appointed as the inaugural Helen De Vitt Jones Endowed Chair of Fine Arts. Dr. Doyle has served as the chair for the Communication and Fine Arts Department since 2006. Doyle began her work at LCU in 1983 as a faculty member in the Music Department, and she currently serves as a professor of music. She has also served in the roles of director, music director, or assistant director of over 75 musicals and theater productions at LCU since 1985.
In response to the appointment Dr. Doyle said, “It is a high honor to have my name in any way associated with Helen De Vitt Jones, a great champion of the fine arts and education. I am thrilled to have LCU now bearing the name of Helen De Vitt Jones through this generous donation.”
LCU President, Dr. Scott McDowell, shared, “We are incredibly grateful for the generosity of the Helen Jones Foundation and will steward this gift well to continue the Helen De Vitt Jones legacy. The fact that Dr. Laurie Doyle will be the first occupant of this prestigious chair aligns perfectly with the vision of excellence the Foundation supports, and I am confident that her leadership in the arts will continue to promote such excellence.”
Helen De Vitt Jones, who was born into one of the early ranching and oil families of West Texas, was a great humanitarian. She was an eager supporter of the fine arts and devoted her later life to sharing her wealth as a patron of philanthropic causes. The foundation that bears her name continues to follow her philosophy as its guiding principle. The generous donation from the Helen De Vitt Jones Foundation supports the strategic plan of the university to offer opportunities for faculty and students as they engage in meaningful and productive opportunities for professional development, scholarly research, and innovative curricular and co-curricular experiences.
President McDowell continued, “The Helen Jones Foundation has continued Mrs. Jones’ legacy of philanthropy and avid support of the fine arts and education and has been an outstanding supporter of Lubbock Christian University for many years. This gift to endow the first Helen De Vitt Jones Chair of Fine Arts at Lubbock Christian University will ensure that we will be able to continue to hire and retain highly qualified faculty and persist in our efforts to elevate the academic standards here at LCU.”
Raymond Richardson, Vice President for University Advancement, added, “The Helen Jones Foundation, under the leadership of Mr. Arnold, has made an everlasting fingerprint on the Fine Arts department at Lubbock Christian University. Our community is academically stronger, culturally enhanced, and sustainable due to the strategic investments made at LCU by the Helen Jones Foundation.”
Learn more about LCU's Department of Communication and Fine Arts.