For the love of the music.
After a career of 48 years in education, Jenkins is retired in Wimberley, Texas. He enjoys playing the trumpet, composing, arranging and publishing music; travel and golf. He is a member of the Wimberley Lions Club. He is a member of the AF&AM, the Austin Consistory of Scottish Rite Masons and the Ben Hur Shrine. He is a member of ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) and enjoys the art of music immensely. He is an ordained Ruling Elder in the Presbyterian Church of the United States of America, active in the Brotherhood of St. Andrew, and is a member of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church. He was a Delegate to Council for the Episcopal Diocese of West Texas and a member of the Vestry of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church Wimberley.
During graduate school at The University of Texas, Jenkins was a Longhorn Band arranger, scoring half-time music for Director Vincent R. DiNino. He also directed the start-up band program at Stephen F. Austin High School in east Austin in 1957-58.
In public education, Jenkins taught instrumental and vocal music in Texas public schools He was the founding Executive Secretary of the Four States Bandmasters Association and sponsored the Four States Stage Band Festivals. As a research psychologist, Jenkins directed a study of accident frequencies at the Red River Ordnance Depot that defined psychological characteristics of accident producers. He was decorated for his research in 1962 with the Civilian Meritorious Medal by the U.S. Department of the Army.
He returned to The University of Texas in 1964 and served as the Assistant Dean of Men during the turbulent middle sixties. Following the passing of the enabling act creating the Virginia Community College System, Jenkins joined the Commonwealth of Virginia and had an active role in building the twenty-two college system. He was the founding Dean of Virginia Western College and was the founding President of Thomas Nelson College.
After operating as the founding Dean of Virginia Western College and the founding President of Thomas Nelson College, Tom returned to Texas in 1970. He was President of Alvin Community College for five years, during which time Jenkins was elected and served as President of the Texas Association of Community College Presidents and Board Members. He developed the master plan for the Alvin college and began an expansion of curricula to accommodate its growth. While at Alvin, the college district grew to twice the geographic boundaries and three times the valuation of taxable wealth. Each was accomplished by popular vote in separate elections.
In 1976, Jenkins joined the Houston Community College System and served as the Director of HCCS services in the northwest quadrant of Harris County until his retirement in June 1993. During his tenure with HCCS, he represented the System to the American Association of Community/Junior Colleges International/Intercultural Consortium. He also founded and directed the Commercial Music curricula at the HCCS.
In retirement, Jenkins has served as a consultant to community colleges in several states and throughout the United Kingdom — and always kept playing. His passion for the trumpet has been a cornerstone of his life and he still performs with numerous ensembles. He has played traveling musicals prior to and during retirement. A variety of genres he has played were: Ice Capades, Disney on Ice, Brigadoon, The Pajama Game, Oklahoma, Pal Joey and Guys and Dolls; Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey, Hanneford Brothers and Brezini Circuses. He has performed with Kay Starr, Harve Presnell, the Geesinslaw Brothers, Harry Blackstone, Jr., the Four Tops and many others.