The Jones Foundation for Reproductive Medicine is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing scientific and medical research in the field of reproductive medicine. The Foundation strives to provide resources to the scientific community so that there may be intellectual, creative and well prepared scientific leaders in the global environment of the 21st century by:
- Fostering the development of innovative, high-quality research by new and established investigators in the field of reproductive medicine.
- Educating the general public, including physicians, administrators and legislators, about the issues of public policy topics that will assist the general public and others in making informed decisions regarding fertility treatment and reproductive medical issues.
- Serving as catalyst to scientific investigators by reviewing and selecting for an annual Award, one or more significant research projects that advanced the field of reproductive medicine.
History & Founders
Our founders, Drs. Howard and Georgeanna Jones, trained hundreds of physicians in assisted reproductive technology. Their academic and clinical instruction indirectly contributed to more than a quarter of a million IVF births in the United States, including over 3,800 babies born as a result of treatment at the Jones Institute.
In 1978 British doctors Robert Edwards and Patrick Steptoe succeeded in conceiving the world’s first IVF baby. On the very day Louise Brown was born in England, Drs. Howard and Georgeanna Jones moved to Norfolk. As the boxes were being moved into their new home a reporter from the local newspaper arrived to ask the Joneses if the in vitro fertilization procedure could be accomplished in Norfolk. They said it could.
With funds donated by a former patient, a team of young scientists was assembled, and utilizing the advances in hormonal stimulation developed by Dr. Georgeanna Jones they pioneered in vitro fertilization at Eastern Virginia Medical School (“EVMS”). In December l981, Judy Carr gave birth to a daughter, Elizabeth Carr, America’s first so-called test tube baby. The Joneses and their team of physicians continued to achieve success, and in l983 at a symposium sponsored by EVMS the Howard and Georgeanna Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine was inaugurated. Elizabeth Carr’s birth in 1981 was an historic landmark in reproductive history, but just the beginning of the extraordinary and groundbreaking work at the Institute.
The field of assisted reproductive technologies expanded to include ISCI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) PGD (preimplantation genetic diagnosis), GIFT (gamete intrafallopian transfer), donor egg programs and surrogacy. Technology exploded in the 1980’s and 90’s, and the Institute remained on the cutting edge, making impressive strides in translational medical research, and becoming one the leading scientific research centers in the world in reproductive medicine.
As in vitro fertilization evolved, so did the Howard and Georgeanna Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine in Norfolk, Virginia, formally named for its founders in 1983. Two years later, to assist with financial and advisory support of the Institute’s endeavors, the Howard and Georgeanna Jones Foundation for Reproductive Medicine was created. While that Foundation is no longer exclusively affiliated with the Jones Institute, it continues to sponsor Institute research and educational projects. In 2009, the Foundation ceased to be exclusively dedicated to the Jones Institute, and expanded its mission so that its financial resources and leadership would be also available to deserving scientists and organizations throughout the United States.
- IVF Comes to Norfolk September 2010 (PDF)
- A Brief History of In Vitro Fertilization, a video lecture by Howard W. Jones, Jr., M.D.April 2008 (video and powerpoint presentation)
- Medical Icon: One-On-One with Dr. Howard Jones, an interview on What Matters with Cathy Lewis, October 2010 October 2010 (video)
- The American Society for Reproductive Medicine Honors Dr. Howard Jones, Jr. Upon His Centennial Birthday October 2010 (article and video)
- One-On-One with Howard Jones, MD: IVF Past and Present in the Light of the Noble Prize October 2010 (transcript and video)
- Howard Jones 100th Birthday at the Jones Institute September 2010 (video)
- An American Experience "Test Tube Babies" (video)
Board of Directors
MARY F. DAVIES began her affiliation with the Jones Foundation following the birth of her first IVF child, a daughter born in 1987. Prior to joining the Foundation Board of Directors, Mary was a senior executive with Bank of America, specializing in marketing and retirement planning administration. She was responsible for product development, administration and promotion for a $20 million holding company, two regional holding companies and three commercial banks. Mary conducted public seminars and conferences as the company spokesman, and discussed retirement planning and investments on regularly scheduled radio and television programs. She was also an instructor in banking at Tidewater Community College, the American Institute of Banking and the National Association of Bank Women.
Mary became a member of the Development Committee of the Jones Foundation in 1987, assuming Chairmanship in 1990 as the Foundation pursued a $10 million capital campaign. She was elected to the Board of Directors in 1989 and has held the positions of Vice Chairman, President and Chairman of the Executive Committee. Mary has also served as a member of the Development, Investment, Ethics and Nominating Committees of the Board of Directors.
Mary has been involved in fundraising for most of her career. Prior to assuming the Presidency of the Jones Foundation, she was the Vice President for Institutional Advancement of a kindergarten – grade 12 independent school where she had also been a member of the Board of Directors for eight years and Chairman of their Development Committee.