Fletcher Jones Foundation
The Fletcher Jones Foundation has generously donated the funds to establish the Fletcher Jones Foundation Scholarship.
Fletcher Roseberry Jones rose from humble beginnings to gain fame and fortune as a mathematician, visionary businessman, and larger than life pioneer in the fast moving and unpredictable new field of computer science in the 1950’s. With his partner, Roy Nutt, a gifted programmer, they launched their own company, Computer Sciences Corporation, in 1959.
From the beginning, CSC was always a cut above the competition and was a magnet for talent by promoting a free-thinking atmosphere that encouraged creativity and experimentation. By 1963, CSC was the nation’s largest software company in a crowded field and the first to be listed on a national exchange. The company became the master of blending computers and communications, as well as the pioneer of multi-programming and real time. By 1967 CSC was well on the way to being the world leader in computer science, having gained lucrative contracts with NASA, The Atomic Energy Commission, and the Army. Today, Computer Sciences Corporation is the largest technology firm headquartered in Los Angeles County with over 90,000 employees worldwide.
As Chairman and CEO of CSC, Fletcher Jones provided the leadership, vitality and ingenuity which not only resulted in a successful company, but a sizable personal fortune as well. Had it not been for the tragedy of his untimely death in an airplane crash at the age of 41, Fletcher Jones would surely have gone on to be recognized as one of the giants of computer science and a name known to every American.
Fletcher Jones had other passions as well, including the collecting of fine art, which he carefully researched before purchase and generously loaned to museums. He acquired 4,000 acres of ranch land in Santa Barbara County named “Westerly Stud Farms,” which served as a breeding and training facility for his stable of race horses. Fletcher Jones’ attachment to airplanes was as deep and intense as his commitment to fine art and race horses. Because he was a careful and experienced pilot, the cause of the plane crash which killed him remains a mystery to this day.
To those who knew him, Fletcher Jones has been described in a variety of ways. He preferred his privacy to a visible social life and was a devoted father to his sons, Jeffrey and Scott. He involved himself with their endeavors in school. He wanted them to succeed but did not coddle or spoil them. Fletcher Jones held the view that extreme wealth might be a liability to his two sons. Hence, while he provided for a reasonable bequest to each of them, the Foundation would eventually receive the bulk of his estate.
Fletcher Jones’ colleagues saw a man devoted to excellence in all aspects of his life—business, art, horses, and home. He was known as an optimist, an intellectual powerhouse, and one who persevered. He set an example as a hard worker and expected the same of his associates. His energy and his ability to seize an opportunity were important factors in his success.
Although today the world recognizes the philanthropic accomplishments of the Fletcher Jones Foundation, Fletcher Jones himself had very little time to spend on thinking about charitable matters and very little to say about the direction which the Foundation would ultimately take, due to his premature death. His legacy through the Foundation was created and continues to be shepherded in a thoughtful and respectable manner by a dedicated and wise Board of Trustees.