Jay Charles Finley III
April 22, 1947 – January 20, 2015
Jay Charles Finley, III, RRP, a well respected figure in the vacation ownership industry, passed away January 20, 2015 in his home in Branson, MO.
Jay was born April 22, 1947 in Jersey City, New Jersey and was raised in West New York, New Jersey. He attended Fairleigh Dickinson University and Montclair State College and worked at New York Telephone before joining the Army and serving in Vietnam. Jay was a decorated Veteran, earning a purple heart, among other citations, and was honorably discharged.
A member of the Masonic Lodge in Branson, he became a 32nd degree member of Scottish Rite Valley of Joplin, MO in 1997. Jay became a Shriner in 1997 with the Abou Ben Adhem Temple in Springfield. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge in Branson, MO, a Noble of Abou Ben Adhem Temple, a member of Taney County Shrine Club and the Ends of the Earth Club.
Jay spent more than 35 years successfully navigating the waters of the resort real estate industry with a particular focus on sales, marketing, management and development. Known for building high performance sales teams, he even wrote sales training manuals and was responsible for sales totaling more than $2 billion.
Throughout his career Jay has been affiliated with many real estate industry leaders. In 1989 he was COO for the Rank organization who specialize in timeshare and fractional sales and development. In 1992 he joined RBC enterprises as senior vice president of the Mid-West division. In1997 he launched a new timeshare company called Grandvista Resorts which ranked among the industry’s top 20 timeshare sales companies in the U.S. based on sales volume and was eventually purchased by Westgate Resorts.
In 2008 he created Compass Resort Group, LLC with partner Chuck Frey. Compass deals predominately with legacy resorts that are experiencing a decline due to maintenance issues, shrinking revenues and escalating debt.
During his long career he earned many ARDA awards in sales, marketing and management including 12 Silver and 6 Gold Awards in the Sales, Marketing, and Management categories. Additionally, he served as chairman of the awards committee, former vice chairman of the resale forum and an active member of the ARDA membership committee.
Jay married Theresa Kathleen Law on October 19, 2013. He is survived by his wife; his brother, Robert James Finley, New Jersey; a niece, Michele Turner, Branson; and two step-sons, Alec G. Stack, Springfield and Erik M. Stack, Branson.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Elsie Mae Miller and Jay C. Finley, II and a sister, Kathleen Ruth Devaney.
Burial with full military honors was held on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 in Missouri Veterans Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warriors Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675 or the American Heart Association, 2446 E. Madrid St., Springfield, MO 65804.
Our deepest sympathies and condolences are with his family and friends at this sad time.
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