People @ Goddard
Alumni, Former Trustee
Jim Clay is the founder of Regency Pacific, a senior health care company with services in four states, but how this occurred is part of why Regency has had an outstanding reputation and has been an innovator in providing quality of life to the oldest Americans.
A natural athlete, Jim began his professional life as a basketball coach with a philosophy that positive reinforcement developed his players much more completely than the business-as-usual screaming and repetitive drills as punishment for poor performance. When the opportunity came to move into health care administration, his first mentor was a tough nurse who believed the best bosses practiced servant leadership. Her “roll-up-your-sleeves-and-understand-the-challenges” approach is reflected in Regency Pacific’s values statement which hangs front and center in the more than fifty facilities he owns.
When success afforded Jim other opportunities, he did not slow down. His passion for serving those who need a little extra help extended to East Africa where he and his wife founded a secondary school. Knowing little about work in third world countries, he enrolled in Goddard’s Master’s program for sustainable community development. He credits Goddard’s excellent faculty and individualized learning program for the outcomes at both the school and the village, which now has several successful small enterprises and a stable source of food and water. His admiration for what a Goddard education can mean in the world inspires his service as a Goddard trustee.
Jim is married, has seven children, ten grandchildren, five rescued dogs and one very spoiled cat. In addition to his work at Goddard, he also serves on the boards of Project Education Inc., Soysambu Wildlife Conservancy, and Forest Ethics.
He is a 2009 graduate of Goddard's MA in Sustainable Business & Communities.