Bill Jenkins

Bill Jenkins, 2009 Honorary Alumni

William L. “Bill” Jenkins (R-TN) was sworn in as a  member of the United States House of Representatives from the First District of Tennessee on January 7, l997.   He represented the First Congressional District of Tennessee in the 105th through the 109th Congresses, serving on the   Judiciary and  Agriculture Committees, and on the Subcommittees on the Constitution and  Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property.  He also served on the Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management;  and the Subcommittee on Specialty Crops and Foreign Agriculture Programs.  In 2003, Jenkins was named Chairman of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Specialty Crops and Foreign Agriculture Programs.

Jenkins, a seventh-generation Tennesseean,  worked as a family farmer and an attorney in his hometown of Rogersville prior to his service  as a Circuit Court Judge for Tennessee’s Third Judicial District.  He resigned his judicial position on May 10, 1996, to enter the First District Congressional race.

Beginning his political career at age 25 as a member of the Tennessee General Assembly, Jenkins served as State Representative for Hawkins,  Hancock, and  Grainger counties.  In 1969, Jenkins was elected Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives.   He later served as Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of  Conservation and in 1971;  was appointed by President Richard Nixon to serve on the board of directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority; and  became a policy advisor on energy and legislative issues to former Tennessee Governor Lamar Alexander.  He has also formerly served as a director of Home Federal Savings and Loan of Upper East Tennessee.

Jenkins owns and operates a family farm with beef cattle. 

Bill Jenkins is married to the former Kathryn Myers, who taught at  Langford Junior High School in Augusta, Georgia, Holston High School in Knox County, Tennessee, and  Cherokee Comprehensive High School in Hawkins County.  They have four children and eleven grandchildren. Educated in the public school systems of Rogersville and Hawkins County, Bill Jenkins earned degrees from Tennessee Tech University and the University of Tennessee College of Law before serving on active duty as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army Military Police Corps.

Jenkins is a member of the First Baptist Church of Rogersville, the Hawkins County Farm Bureau, the American Legion, Overton Masonic Lodge #5, a Life Member of the Tennessee Wildlife Federation, and the Tennessee Bar Association.  He is a past chairman of the Tennessee Heart Association, past district chairman of the Cancer Crusade, and a past chairman of the Hawkins County Community Chest.  He likes to hunt, fish, golf, and garden.

ETSU | Advancement | Alumni | Foundation | Contacts
Alumni Association · Box 70709 · Johnson City, TN 37614
(423) 439-4218 ·