Mid-States MSDC Mourns Founding CEO Donald E. Jones


Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council (Mid-States MSDC) is saddened to announce the passing of founder Donald E. Jones.

Jones, a native of Indianapolis, dedicated more than 30 years to cultivating a space for minority suppliers to congregate. Before establishing Mid-States MSDC as the leading supplier development council that it is today, Jones’ dedication to fostering minority-owned businesses began in 1973, when he joined the Indianapolis Urban League Business Development Center. Over the years Don’s vision led him to establish the independent Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council, a testament to his enduring commitment.

Both past and present Mid-States MSDC CEO’s recognize Jones’ impact. Former CEO, Carolyn Mosby, who worked closely with Jones until his retirement in 2004, remembers him fondly.

“Don Jones possessed a wealth of knowledge and demonstrated strong dedication to fostering minority businesses in Indiana,” Mosby said. “His commitment and hard work paved the way for these businesses to thrive. Mid-States MSDC, a regional affiliate of the National Minority Supplier Development Council, boasted the highest number of corporate-plus minority-owned businesses, thanks to Don’s advocacy.”

Current President and CEO Demetrius Glover echoes Mosby’s sentiment, highlighting Jones’ lasting impact and the organization’s deep appreciation.

“We will miss him more than words can express,” Glover said. “To show our gratitude for his contributions to this organization, minority suppliers, and supplier diversity efforts across the tri-state region, we have established the Donald E. Jones Legacy Award in his honor. The award will be presented at our annual ceremony each November.”

Reggie Henderson, who led the council from 2004 to 2008, said that while Jones was generally a quiet and humble man, his vocal efforts for the community were still powerful.

“Don Jones was the father of diversity, equity and inclusion in Indiana and well before the term was coined,” Henderson said. “His desire to simply do the right thing opened the doors for so many such that they could reach their greatest potential.”

Donald E. Jones’ impact will not be forgotten. His family and friends invite members of the community to celebrate his life and legacy.

Services will be held at noon on Friday, June 7 at Witherspoon Presbyterian Church. The calling will begin at 10 a.m.

To make a tribute in honor of Donald E. Jones’ life and legacy, please visit stuartmortuary.com. For more information about Mid-States MSDC please visit midstatesmsdc.org.

Check out a 2016 interview with Don Jones about the 40th anniversary of the Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council here.

About Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council

Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, established in 1976, and one of 23 regional affiliates of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC). NMSDC’s network is the nation’s most dynamic force in developing successful relationships between America’s top corporations and supply-chain providers from the Asian, Black, Hispanic and Native American communities. Mid-States MSDC’s mission is to accelerate economic growth by driving opportunities and collaboration between corporations and minority businesses. The Mid-States MSDC’s footprint includes Central Illinois, Indiana and Eastern Missouri, and we connect our corporate members with qualified minority-owned suppliers of all sizes that meet a high standard of excellence.