SMA Foundation Creates Scholarship Honoring Jim Henry

The Southwest Meat Association (SMA) has created a scholarship in honor of Jim Henry. The first scholarship was awarded at SMA’s 61st Annual Convention and Suppliers Showcase on July 22 in San Antonio. 

Bryan “Bo” Garcia, a sophomore at Texas A & M, was the recipient of the scholarship. Bo’s goal is to get a master’s degree in Animal Science and Education and pursue a career teaching at the university level. Making this first awarding of the scholarship even more special, Bo and Jim Henry share the same birthday.

The scholarship is being funded by the SMA Foundation and by donations made in Jim Henry’s memory. Scholarships will be awarded to qualifying students who are working towards a degree in meat science and a career in the meat industry.

Before his passing on June 17, 2017, Jim Henry was indisputably the longest-tenured member of SMA. His decades of experience in the meat industry gave him a unique perspective and allowed him to witness countless monumental changes in meat processing. He was considered the “go-to” person for anything related to buying, selling, refurbishing, troubleshooting, or repairing meat processing equipment and was a pioneer in terms of customer service. His passionate devotion to serving his customers led many of them to become his closest, lifelong friends. Jim’s passion for the industry continues through the work of his daughter, Cecelia Railey, and grandson, Scott Railey, at Jim Henry Enterprises.

Jim twice served as President of SMA’s Associate members in 1973-74 and 1982-83. The true affection and high regard with which SMA members held him were on display any time they gathered for an SMA convention. Jim attended 58 of the 60 annual SMA conventions held during his lifetime.

Donations to the Jim Henry Scholarship fund may be made through the SMA Foundation website.