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Arthur Jones, former MIT News Office director, dies at 61

Arthur Jones
Arthur Jones

Arthur Jones, a former deputy White House press secretary who served as director of the MIT News Office, died on Oct. 2 at Brigham and Women's Hospital following complications from treatment he was receiving for leukemia. He was 61 and had lived in Newton.

A memorial service will be held Friday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. in Walker Memorial at MIT. Parking is available at the Hayward St. Lot.

Kathryn Willmore, who recently retired as a vice president at MIT, said of working with Jones, "When Arthur Jones called, it wasn't just MIT calling, it was Arthur. And people knew they could count on him to tell the truth."

A native of Baltimore, Jones was an award-winning journalist in both television and print media. He worked at the Boston Globe, sharing a team Pulitzer Prize in 1975 for meritorious public service, and he received a New England Television Emmy Award in 1980 while he was news manager at WBZ-TV in Boston.

Jones served as director of communications for the city of Boston in the administration of Mayor Raymond L. Flynn and before that, as assistant press secretary to Gov. Michael S. Dukakis.

Jones moved to Washington, D.C., in 1993 to serve in former President Bill Clinton's press office and later as director of public affairs for the court-appointed receiver of the District of Columbia Housing Authority.

When he was appointed MIT News Office director, Jones said, "After several years in public service, it is an honor to join a traditional leader in service to the nation and the world--a voice of authority in science and technology."

Jones served as News Office director from 2003 until his illness.

He is survived by his wife, Karen; his mother, Ruth Stokes of Detroit; two daughters, Kofi of Wilmington and Keely of Los Angeles; a sister, Rita Dady of Oakland; a brother, Frizelle of Hudson; a stepbrother, Eric Stokes of Detroit; and a granddaughter.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on October 4, 2006 (download PDF).

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