Jiles E. Kirkland - 2008 A Award Recipient
Called to preach at the age of 10, Jiles E. Kirkland served for 46 years as a Methodist pastor and as the district superintendent of the Sarasota District. Beginning in 1954, he pastored the Manhattan Avenue United Methodist Church in Tampa, Florida. During his 10 years there, the church received 1,800 new members. He also pastored several churches in Florida, Kentucky and Illinois.
Kirkland has worked for Asbury College as a vounteer in student recruitment and referral. In 1991, he served as the organizing regional volunteer for the largest Second Century Campaign Regional Event in Tampa. In 1990, he served as an assistant to the President's Office and Institutional Advancement with major gift cultivation and solicitation.
Kirkland will retire this year from the Asbury College Board of Trustees. For 10 years, he has assisted in fund-raising for the College's expansion program--raising nearly $5 million. The first floor of the Kinlaw Library is dedicated in the honor of Jiles and his wife Eloise Gakes '50 Kirkland.
Kirkland holds degrees from Asbury College and Garrett-Evangelical Seminary, as well as honorary doctorates from Asbury College and Bethune-Cookman College, Kirkland received the Distinguished Service Award from Asbury College and was also the College's Volunteer of the Year.
Since retirement from the Florida Conference, Jiles and his wife moved to North Carolina where they built a home in the Smoky Mountains. They have three children, nine grandchildren and a great-grandchild.