The imprint of Kay ’02 and Jerry Cox ’72 on Mays Business School — and on Texas A&M — is hard to miss. The pair has donated more than $2 million to Mays, and one of Mays’ buildings (Jerry and Kay Cox Hall) bears their name.
The Coxes say they wanted to continue their family tradition of supporting the school, so they created a fund to support the Business Honors Program. The $400,000 gift, which will be implemented over the next five years, will be used to provide scholarships to full-time students enrolled in the program.
“We just strongly believe in the business school and want to keep supporting the good things that are going on there,” Jerry Cox explains. “Kay and I believe that recruiting high-achieving students to the Mays Honors Program will benefit not only those students, but will positively impact all Mays students, programs and faculty.”
Jerry and Kay Cox Hall, completed in 2003, enhanced the classroom and office capacity of the business school. The Coxes gave $1.5 million toward the facility and 40 other former students and friends also contributed.
“I believe this sends a loud message to peer institutions and the business community that we are serious about excellence in business education,” Jerry Cox said at the time of the addition. “We don’t just want to move up in the rankings but desire to impact the business community. It’s not enough to just be successful in the business world. As Aggies, it’s not only our knowledge, but also our values and integrity, that set us apart.”
Cox Hall also contains the Reliant Energy Securities & Commodities Training Center, which was outfitted with the most up-to-date financial data and training equipment by a $3 million endowment by Reliant Energy, and the Cocanougher Special Events Center, named for former Dean Benton Cocanougher, who initiated the center’s construction, and his wife Dianne.
“It is impossible to be at Mays Business School and not feel the impact and affection of the Coxes,” said Mays Dean Jerry Strawser. “Their generosity has significantly enhanced our three most important strategic priorities: our faculty, our Business Honors Program, and our MBA Program. It is a rare donor that touches all of those areas and impacts them so meaningfully. But, Jerry and Kay Cox are rare people.”
Jerry Cox is president and chairman of Cox & Perkins Exploration Inc. in Houston. He received a bachelor’s degree in finance from Texas A&M, a master’s degree in theological studies from Houston Baptist University and an honorary doctorate of laws from Pepperdine University. Kay Cox received a master’s in educational psychology from Texas A&M in 2002.
He was inducted into the Corps Hall of Honor in 2009 and has been honored as a distinguished alumnus by both the Mays Business School and The Association of Former Students.
He has been a major donor behind several enhancements of Texas A&M including the Cox-McFerrin Center for Aggie Basketball and the Jerry and Kay Cox Endowed Chair at the Mays Business School. Cox has served on many boards and committees at Texas A&M, including the Texas A&M Foundation, the Development Council at the Mays Business School and the Corps Development Council. He is a former director and president of the 12th Man Foundation and was the presiding chairman of the One Spirit One Vision campaign.