James Andrew Jones, one of five children born to Jennifer and Earl Harris, was born at Miami’s Jackson Memorial Hospital and raised in Carol City.
A four-year letter winner at American Senior High School in Miami, Jones was the Class 6A Player of the Year in Florida in 1999 and catapulted to national fame as a star of the University of Miami’s basketball team, from which he graduated with a degree in finance after carrying a 3.41 GPA and joining the National Honor Society. He was inducted into the university’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.
The Indiana Pacers drafted Jones out of college in 2003 and just five years later he made his way back to his hometown to wear the #22 jersey for the Miami Heat. While playing alongside Lebron James and Dwyane Wade, Jones went on to win two championship rings with the team and a third with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He is currently the vice president of basketball operations for the Phoenix Suns.
Wherever he lives, Jones has always remained connected to his Miami roots, and in 2009 he and his wife Destiny established the James Jones Legacy Foundation to make a difference in the lives of children without access to positive role models. His philanthropic dedication extends throughout the community as an advocate for Tobacco Free Florida, the Miami-Dade Homeless Trust and a personal leadership and literacy campaign for school-age children.
Athletics run deep in Jones’s family. His uncle, Ricky Gutierrez, is a former infielder who played 12 seasons of major league baseball with the San Diego Padres, Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs, Cleveland Indians, New York Mets and Boston Red Sox. His aunt, Lisa Gutierrez, and his cousin, Mionsha Gay, played basketball at the University of Miami. Another aunt, Hope Jones, and cousin, Shelnita Jackson, played basketball locally at Barry University. Jones’s biological father, Jay Lee (Southern University), uncle, Mitchell Lee (University of Minnesota), and cousin, Shawn Brailsford (Marshall University), played college basketball.
Jones enjoys spending time with his family, reading, fishing, bowling and waterskiing. In 2006 he hosted a basketball camp with his former high school coach at American Senior High School, which blossomed into Crew 22 Training Camp. In 2009 he and his wife hosted J Hoops Live in his wife’s hometown of Barbados with the Barbados Amateur Basketball Association. In addition to basketball, his favorite sports include football, his favorite teams being the Miami Hurricanes and the Miami Dolphins.
Jones and his wife have three children.