James O. (Jim) Manley passed away on July 28, 2019. Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, July 31, 2019, at Navarre Funeral Home, 2444 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX 77521. Funeral Service will be held at 10 a.m., Thursday, August 1, 2019, at Rollingbrook Fellowship First Baptist Church, 505 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX 77521. Burial will follow at Cedar Bayou Masonic Cemetery in Baytown.
James O. (Jim) Manley was born June 1,1935 in Goose Creek, Texas, to M.O. Manley and Sally McDonald Manley. He died of congestive heart failure on July 28, 2019.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Nell McLain.
He is survived by his wife, Frances, daughter Carla Longhofer; son, Marcus Manley and wife Stephanie, and step-grandson Ian; grandson James Longhofer; granddaughter Sarah Longhofer and husband Mike Hahn; granddaughter Leah Longhofer; niece Lydia Galloway and nephew Gary Girard; and former son-in-law and forever treasured family member, Kyle Longhofer.
Jim grew up on Cedar Bayou Road in what is now Baytown, on a Shetland pony farm. He graduated from Cedar Bayou High School, Texas A&M, and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. His post-graduate studies included English literature at Midwestern University. He received a Danforth Grant for graduate studies in political ethics and theology at Rice University, which led to a series of senior positions in city, county, and state government.
He served as a campus minister at Tyler Junior College, University of Texas-Arlington, Texas Wesleyan University, and Midwestern University, and taught religion courses at several colleges. He later served numerous churches as interim pastor or in part-time staff positions while working in several non-profit and government leadership positions. He had many teaching roles in numerous churches over the years.
He held senior staff positions for six elected officials, including Houston mayors Fred Hofheinz, Jim McConn and Cathy Whitmire. He served as chief of staff to State Representative Sylvester Turner and headed the Local Government Division of the State Comptrollers Office under Comptroller John Sharp. He was chief deputy and chief of staff to the El Paso County judge during the his last eight years of work before retiring in Baytown. He also served as president and CEO of the North Channel Area Chamber of Commerce and executive vice president and CEO of the Houston Restaurant Association.
He was active in numerous organizations and held leadership roles in many. He served as chairman of the board of the Houston unit of Volunteers of America and as president of the Houston Society of Association Executives.
Following retirement, he served on the board of Urban Harvest, as vice president and board member of the Houston Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas, and as a member of the Steering Committee of Precinct 2 Master Gardeners.
He was known for his often humorous and thoroughly researched introductions of program guests in the various organizations in which he had program responsibilities.
He taught Bible Study at First Baptist Church, Baytown, and was active in its First Choice Senior ministry. He played the role of Jacob Marley in the church’s several productions of a “Scrooge” adaptation.
Jim loved gardening, reading, participating in and working to improve organizations, and time in the outdoors. Some of his favorite memories were of dining out with his wife, and their long rehashing of memories and discussions of religious and world affairs. Each year he eagerly anticipated the preserves and jellies she made from the blackberries, figs, and grapes he grew and harvested. He loved listening with his children to their favorite music. He enjoyed the musical theater with his daughter and the many discussions of contemporary books and current affairs with her and her family. He thrived on the recollection of the many days and nights in the outdoors throughout Texas with his son, as well as their many hours discussing every subject.
Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, July 31, 2019, at Navarre Funeral Home, 2444 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX 77521. Funeral Service will be held at 10 a.m., Thursday, August 1, 2019, at Rollingbrook Fellowship First Baptist Church, 505 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX 77521.
Burial will follow at Cedar Bayou Masonic Cemetery in Baytown.