As a former college basketball player and an aspiring coach, Aaron T. Jones understands the importance of both teamwork and leadership. This experience helps him succeed both as a program manager for Lockheed Martin Corporation in Miami and as a member of the South Florida Chapter. In addition, Jones is a major in the U.S. Army Reserve Signal Corps, who serves as a strategic plans and operations officer in the J-6 Directorate at the U.S. Southern Command. Over the years, he has deployed in support of several operations, including Intrinsic Action in Kuwait, KFOR-3B in Kosovo, Iraqi Freedom in Iraq and Unified Response in Haiti.
“My favorite aspect of my current position is being able to communicate effectively and efficiently with executive level decision makers about solving their complex problems,” Jones relates. He also enjoys the process of managing a project from “cradle to grave and experiencing all the highs and lows associated with the process.”
Jones joined AFCEA in 2000 while serving as an Army second lieutenant Signal Corps officer in the 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, Fort Benning, Georgia. “I wasn’t highly involved during that time because of multiple deployments and training requirements,” Jones says; however, he did attend several AFCEA functions every year. As an active-duty major assigned to the J-6 Directorate in 2007, he became more involved with the South Florida Chapter, ultimately volunteering to serve as the second vice president in the spring of 2012 to reinvigorate the membership. He played an integral role in encouraging engagement and developing a chapter growth strategy. Jones introduced a series of initiatives and assisted with the organization of the chapter’s first executive committee meeting and now is leading the effort to establish a chapter Young AFCEAN program.
“I attribute AFCEA [membership] to my personal and professional development, both as an Army Signal Corps officer and as a business professional,” Jones notes. He emphasizes that the association gave him an opportunity to network with other professionals from all over the country and to fully understand the reach of what AFCEA has to offer. Those opportunities included meeting Gen. Colin Powell, USA (Ret.), during a Washington, D.C. Chapter luncheon, which Jones recounts as his favorite memory with the association.
Despite meeting and working with many leaders, Jones points to his parents as his biggest mentors. “They have always set a positive example for me and displayed a tireless work ethic, both in their personal and professional lives.” He draws inspiration from their success and is committed to using his skills to help the South Florida Chapter emerge as a prominent chapter once again.