As Chief Executive Officer of Habitat for Humanity of Smith County, Jack Wilson offers 40 years of experience in architecture, construction and business management. With construction and architectural degrees, Jack was the Founder and CEO of a 24-year-old multiple office architectural and interior design firm, and he is licensed to practice in 14 states.
After over 15 years, Jack Wilson will hang up his hard hat as the Chief Executive Officer of Habitat for Humanity of Smith County.
At the end of June, Wilson will enter retirement after over a decade of service to the Smith County affiliate. Though originally from Boston, Massachusetts, Wilson’s first-hand experience with Habitat for Humanity began in Sarasota, Florida while volunteering as an ‘Orange Shirt Crew Leader’ starting in 2001, while running his multi-state architectural and interior design firm. After closing his firm in 2007, he served as Chief Operations Officer for Sarasota’s Habitat affiliate before being hired as Smith County Habitat’s CEO shortly after, in 2008.
Wilson has made his mark in the community since he and his wife, Patricia, moved to East Texas years ago. He is especially proud to look back on the progress of the affiliate over the years. “There have been many changes during my time here, and our affiliate has evolved by leaps and bounds. When I got here, we had built 74 homes, and soon we’ll finish construction on our 120th Habitat home in Smith County.”
Wilson was at the helm of the organization when its Critical Repairs Department was created in 2009. “I’m so pleased with the progress we’ve made in this department. Since 2009, we’ve spent about $10 million in grant funds completing over 1,200 repairs and renovations to homes for our seniors, veterans, and neighbors with disabilities,” Wilson said. “You’ve heard my speech about how important this work is, but we truly are the safety net for these individuals, and the only organization doing this type of work.”
The affiliate will celebrate Wilson’s tenure with the organization in June with a hybrid Retirement Party Fundraiser, raising funds to benefit the mission Smith County Habitat and to fund the lead gift toward the Jack Wilson Legacy Endowment Fund.
After a job well done and quite the legacy created here in East Texas, Wilson is excited to return to Sarasota with his wife, and “to be back on the ocean, with all the boats and white sand.”
He is a 30+ year member of the Unitarian Universalist Church.
Habitat for Humanity of Smith County’s Search Committee recommended, and by unanimous vote of the Board of Directors, approve Mary Alice Guidry as the affiliate’s new Chief Executive Officer. Mrs. Guidry’s role with HFHSC will officially commence in early July.
Guidry joins the Habitat team after serving six years on its Board of Directors, serving terms as Secretary, as well as President. She is a licensed architect with 9 years of experience as a Sr. Project Manager with Fitzpatrick Architects, Inc.
Current Smith County Habitat CEO, Jack Wilson, says he’s excited for the future of the affiliate under the leadership of his successor. “It’s time for new blood and fresh ideas, and for us to reach other demographics,” he said. “I think Mary Alice’s community involvement will be a great asset for the affiliate, and her background in design, construction, and business is a good foundation to move our affiliate to another level.”
“I’m a dreamer, focused on possibilities of innovation and creativity.” Guidry said. “As a licensed architect, I’m educated in current design and construction trends, as well as sustainability and affordable housing issues. I think this knowledge, paired with my imaginative outlook, will be beneficial in HFHSC moving forward. My goal is for Smith County Habitat to set precedents in our programs, making affiliates nationwide seek out our team’s direction and expertise.”
Guidry’s passion for the mission of Habitat for Humanity was ignited while finishing her undergraduate degree with the opportunity to design and build a Habitat home from start to finish, and her love of the mission has only grown since. Guidry is a graduate of Louisiana Tech University, where she earned her Master of Architecture degree. She has served as Project Manager and Designer for 10 projects during her time at Fitzpatrick Architects, Inc., equating to over 288,000 square feet and over $54 million, specializing in renovations and additions for non-profit organizations and multi-family housing. “I’m forever grateful to the leadership and staff at Fitzpatrick Architects for everything I’ve learned and the network I’ve gained through my time at the firm. I wouldn’t be where I am now without them!”
The affiliate plans to hold a meet-and-greet event for the new CEO in summer 2023.