Veteran Honored as Distinguished Alumni

SAN ANTONIO – A graduate of Wayland Baptist University was honored by his alma mater during a Sept. 30 alumni gathering in the city. Jack De Forrest III was named Distinguished Alumni Award honoree for 2021 for the campus, one of 11 in the Wayland system.

A veteran of the U.S. Air Force, De Forrest retired as chief master sergeant after a 29-year career that involved 18 years as first sergeant in employee relations roles in both domestic and foreign locations. He also served as aircraft technician and supervised jet flight training detachment of B-1 Bomber pilots.

He earned his undergraduate education while serving his country, with two associate’s degrees from Community College of the Air Force and his Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education degree from Wayland, received in 2007. He then earned a Master of Public Administration degree in 2013 from Norwich University.

De Forrest is executive director of transportation for North East ISD, the 13th largest public school district in the state. His team of more than 400 employees operates more than 200 bus routes travelling more than 17,000 miles per day to serve 70 campus and program locations during the 180-day school year. Nearly 15,000 students are in the team’s care during the day. He joined the district in 2008 first as a substitute driver, working his way up to the leadership role.

“I can think of few Wayland alumni who exemplify what it means to love their university more than Jack De Forrest. He is a regular supporter, serves on our Alumni Board, recruits regularly for our campuses and champions the cause of higher education at every opportunity,” said Teresa Young, director of alumni relations at Wayland. “We are honored that he is part of our Wayland family and we are proud to formally honor his accomplishments and his service.”

Wayland’s Alumni Association has presented Distinguished Alumni Awards to graduates over the homecoming weekend for many years. The program was expanded a few years ago to include a winner for each campus’ alumni. An Alumnus of the Year is chosen annually from the various campus winners and announced at Wayland’s Homecoming in February.


Pictured Above: Jack De Forrest, left, shakes hands with San Antonio campus Executive Director Dr. Jim Antenen after being presented the Distinguished Alumni Award for the campus for 2021 at a Thursday night alumni event.