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Jimmie Ray Alford




AAFA #0500

1943 KY – 2012 IL


Jimmie R. Alford



Chicago, Cook Co., IL—21 December 2012


            Jimmie R. Alford, LL.D., L.H.D., CFRE died on December 18, 2012, at age 69, after a sudden heart attack.

            Jimmie was born in Madisonville, KY on November 24, 1943 to Loren and Dora Mae Alford. He has two siblings Betty Peveler and Larry Alford. The family moved to Chicago in the early 1950’s. On June 28, 1998, he married his best friend and true partner, Maree G. Bullock. He adored and celebrated his family, including his children Ann, Sean, Alan and Joshua and grandchildren Collin and Casey. He took immense joy in spending time with his family and never went a day without letting them know the depth of his love.

            Jimmie was also a deeply generous man who poured his heart and soul into the work of the nonprofit sector, helping to empower organizations as a visionary leader, mentor and teacher. He began his career with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago while completing his degree at North Park University and advanced quickly in the organization, becoming the director of a club program unit at the age of 24. He went on to obtain a Masters degree in Administration and Organizational Behavior from Aurora University and continued to work with the Boys & Girls Clubs for a total of 16 years.

            In 1979, he founded The Alford Group, a national consulting firm serving the nonprofit community in organizational development, philanthropy, executive search and knowledge management. The mission of the firm was core to Jimmie’s work and legacy, “to strengthen the not-for-profit community.” He formalized his efforts to educate the next generation of leaders by teaching graduate courses at the Axelson Center for Nonprofit Management at North Park University and by leading the Nonprofit Executive Education Certification at Notre Dame University.

            Most recently, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Better Government Association of Chicago and the 2012 “Spirit of Youth” award from the National Runaway Switchboard. In 2007, he received an honorary Doctor of Laws from North Park University and an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Aurora University.

            Even more than Jimmie’s professional achievements, his profound ability to inspire and motivate remains his most celebrated quality. Over his lifetime, Jimmie has helped countless people realize their dreams through his leadership and guidance. His legacy will live on through his wife, Maree, his children and grandchildren and through every organization and individual he touched.

            Visitation and service will be held Saturday, December 22, 2012 at the First United Methodist Church at The Chicago Temple, 77 W. Washington Street, Chicago, Illinois 60602. Public visitation begins at 1 p.m. and the memorial service at 2 p.m. Interment private.

            In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Jimmie R. Alford Scholarship Fund at North Park University, 3225 West Foster Avenue, Box 6, Chicago, Illinois 60625, For further information Michalik Funeral Home 312-421-0936 or sign guestbook at


AAFA NOTES: SSDI records confirm the birth and death dates of Jimmy R. Alford (SS# issued in IL), last residence not listed.

            Jimmie was on AAFA’s Board of Directors in 1996 and 1997. His first wife was Ellen D. Lasak.

            For more information about this family, see AAFA’s published genealogy, Known Descendants of William Alford and Mary Miller.

            His lineage: Jimmie Ray 1943 KY1, Loren G. 1915 KY2, Harlan 1894 KY3, Delaney 1871 KY4, Wilson L. “Cap” 1840 KY5, William 1804 VA6, William 1775 VA7.