1970-2020: Advancing the cause for 50 years


The desks were doors laid across file cabinets when I came to Graves & Associates as an intern in 1979. I used White-Out to correct the news release I wrote on a typewriter, wielded a calculator to tally the column inches of a competitor’s classified newspaper ads, and proofread strips of type that had been pasted up using wax and a roller.

I brought my Apple IIe computer with me from home when I returned as a new staff member to a real desk. That was 1987 and the agency was now called Jacobson Ray McLaughlin Fillips.

In those years, you would often hear former president Kurt Jacobson stress how important it was to “know and love the client’s business.” It was true then and it’s true now. Today we work with many nonprofit and government as well as business clients. Our passion is not only to know their business but to embrace their purpose and to “advance the cause.”

Advancing the cause has also been rewarding as we’ve built our team. In 1974, our founder Glen Graves hired Jerry McLaughlin as part of the “Back a Brother” campaign to create opportunities for candidates from racial minority groups. Jerry retired 37 years later as JayRay executive vice president. Glen gave me a break, too, accepting me as an intern. (Thank you, Glen!) And in 2007, JayRay welcomed a sharp Western Washington University student, Kacie Leacy, as an intern. Kacie was hired right after graduation and became part of the JayRay ownership team in 2016.

At JayRay, we continue to support causes and organizations that make a meaningful difference in our community. Consider it partial payment for our community’s decades-long support of JayRay.

As we celebrate our 50th anniversary, my heart is full. I am grateful for the many clients and colleagues who have given us the privilege of taking up their causes as our own – from meeting the basic needs of families who are struggling and educating our children, to creating jobs and building community.

On behalf of the JayRay team, thank you.

We invite you to look back over the decades with a visit to JayRay’s anniversary timeline.

Written by Kathleen Deakins, JayRay president