A West Virginia native, Jones worked as a builder and contractor in Huntington and began his political career in the 1960s with a four-year stint in the West Virginia state House of Delegates. He moved to the Bluegrass State after marrying Kentuckian Libby Lloyd and they opened the 2,500-acre Airdrie Stud near Midway, Ky., in 1972. Some of Airdrie farm sits on land that was part of the Woodburn Stud, an important 19th century breeding farm that was the home to five Kentucky Derby winners. Airdrie is home to more than 200 mares and a dozen stallions, including Proud Citizen, sire of Mark Valeski. Jones, one of America's most prominent breeders for more than 30 years, was active in Kentucky politics and served as lieutenant governor for four years and governor of the commonwealth from 1991 to 1995.