Growing up in the small town of Early, Iowa, Jack Evans emulated the work ethic of both his grandparents and parents. After high school, Jack had the opportunity to follow in his father’s footsteps to Coe College, earning a Bachelor’s Degree and “finding the two loves of his life: Cedar Rapids, and Nancy.”
After college, Jack went on to receive an MBA from the University of Iowa and began work at SCI Financial Group, Inc., eventually moving up the ranks to President and Chief Operations Officer. Jack recalls his time at SCI Financial Group fondly and especially enjoyed the municipal work he did with nonprofits and hospitals, such as the Cedar Rapids Public Library.
In 1996 after William Whipple became chairman, Jack was invited to become President of the Hall-Perrine Foundation. Under Jack’s expertise, the Hall-Perrine Foundation continued as a pinnacle of community investment in Linn County and today, is credited for being not only a catalyst for community reinvestment, but an anchor investor in the fabric of Linn County. Frequently consulted on community projects, Jack has become known for his keen analytics. “If Jack is behind a project, then I know it has been vetted out properly,” remarks Kyle Skogman, President of Skogman Companies.
In addition to his leadership role at The Hall-Perrine Foundation, Jack has demonstrated strong commitment to organizations like Priority One, United Way of East Central Iowa, and he has sat on the board of The Gazette Company, Nuveen Mutual Funds, Coe College, the Chicago Reserve, and the Iowa Board of Regents. Currently, Jack is chairman of the board of directors at United Fire Group and is the only non-physician on the Board of Directors for the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery, Inc. Jack has been the only person to twice chair a campaign for United Way of East Central Iowa – the first in 1994 and the second in 2014 alongside his son, Matt; the centennial campaign set the record for funds raised. “The country needs a few more Jack Evans,” remarks Jim Leach, former U.S. Congressman.
“You look at the new library as an example, the McGrath Amphitheatre, the convention center --- they would all be an example of the generosity of The Hall-Perrine Foundation led by Jack. He has made an incredible difference in allowing us to move this community forward,” says Jeff Pomeranz, Cedar Rapids City Manager. “He is Mr. Cedar Rapids.” He is able to connect people in a way they didn’t know they needed. He has mastered the art of diplomacy with selfless savvy, according to Dean Sara Gardial of the University of Iowa.
If you are a Washington Warriors fan, you will frequently see Jack going casual for Friday Night Lights. This year, he will be proudly celebrating 40 consecutive years of being part of the “chain gang crew” at all Washington home football games. However, his community involvement only comes second to the love that Jack has for his family: his wife, his three boys, and three grandchildren. A decisive thinker, a family man, and a great listener; it’s easy to say one could learn a lot from Jack Evans. Perhaps no description could be more apt than the one Randy Ramlo, President of United Fire Group, provided, “Jack Evans is like Jimmy Stewart from “It’s a Wonderful Life”. He’s cordial, smooth, and the most down-to Earth guy I’ve ever met. He’s never lost his roots.”