James Akin McAlister
James Akin McAlister
  • November 15, 1936 - January 16, 2018
  • Texas

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Jim was lovingly and joyously welcomed into Heaven on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.
Jim was born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1936. His family moved to Shreveport, LA where Jim grew up and went to school. He later attended the University of Oklahoma where he was a Kappa Alpha and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Geology and Engineering. After completing his Bachelor degree, Jim moved to Houston and attended the University of Houston where he received a Master's Degree in Petroleum Engineering and a second Master's Degree in Finance.
In 1962, Jim married Rhetta Moody of Houston and they enjoyed 55 years of marriage and have two children, Jim McAlister IV ("Jr") and Hydie Hill McAlister. Jim is survived by his wife, Rhetta McAlister and their children Jim McAlister IV and Hydie Hill McAlister, his brother, Dr. Clint McAlister (and wife Gracie) of Bossier City, Louisiana and nephews Clint (and wife Eva), Charles McAlister and his niece, Jan McAlister (and husband Jim Ingvoldstad). Jim is predeceased by his parents, Jim and Inez Gayle McAlister.
As a young man, Jim worked with Mitchell Energy and Development as Vice President of Real Estate Investments and Director of Corporate Planning and Economics. During his nine year association with Mitchell Energy and Development he was responsible for implementation and creation of the Woodlands. It was just the start of his successful real estate career.
Jim formed McAlister Company in 1973 and later McAlister Investment Real Estate. He was often looked upon for his expertise in the field of real estate and asked to be a guest speaker for many Kiwanis, Rotary and Lions Clubs, Investment, Marketing and Banking Groups, Houston Association of Realtors, Title Companies and The Chamber of Commerce Groups throughout Texas, Massachusetts and California.
Jim always enjoyed athletics as well and played semi-pro football for several years after college. He also played tournament tennis and golf for much of his adult life.
For those that knew Jim, you know that one of his passions was horses. Jim, Rhetta and Hydie spent many happy and successful years travelling and competing in Quarter Horse Shows. In 1984, 1985 and 1986 Jim was the Texas All Around High Point Champion. In 1987 Jim and his horse, Top Win Boy, accumulated 80 American Quarter Horse Association All Around Championships. That year Jim was voted to be the recipient of the Texas Amateur Sportsmanship Award which is given to the person most helpful and enjoyable to show with. Jim's next challenge was to learn to ride and show Reining Horses and, as always he gave it a hundred percent and was successful. Only several years ago his Quarter Horse, Hidalgo, was the Buckskin National Champion Reining Horse, and his Quarter Horse, Smoke was the Buckskin Reserve National Champion Reining Horse. Jim was known for always giving 100% and was admired for his dedication and sportsmanship and kindness to all. Even when Jim stopped competing a few years ago, he continued giving his time in many areas of the Quarter Horse world; serving on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Texas Quarter Horse Association and the Greater Houston Quarter Horse Association.
Jim was also very involved with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo both as a contestant and committeeman. He served on the Corporate Development Committee, The Youth Education Committee, the International Committee and the Cutting Horse Committee. He and Rhetta are both Lifetime Committee Members.
For many years Jim loved riding the Texas Hill Country with the Tejas Vaqueros. Their annual September ride was always the first thing that went onto his New Year's calendar and the brotherhood shared was something that was very important to him. He enjoyed sharing stories and catching up with old friends whenever he could.
Jim also served on the Board of Directors of SIRE, and was instrumental in the merger of SIRE with Houston's Therapeutic Equestrian Center. It always brought a smile to his face when he spoke of the program and the positive impact it brought to those with special needs and disabilities and their families.
Over the years Jim gave much of his time to young people, teaching them to ride, hunt and water ski. He counseled many on career choices and even how to write job resumes. He also gave many college students summer jobs at McAlister Company teaching them about real estate and the economics of business.
Jim and Rhetta are members of First Presbyterian Church where they were married 55 years ago. In 1968, along with several other couples in the Fulshear area Jim and Rhetta worked together to re-open a once abandoned one room church and named it The Simonton Community Church. The Church which has grown exponentially over the years has been completely restored and is extremely active within the community.
Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to his private care doctor, Dr. Karen Hoermann and to Monique Lee and the precious caregivers who work with her at Gift Bearing Angels, for the loving care they have provided to Jim over the last several months.
In lieu of customary remembrances, the family requests with gratitude that donations be made in his name to: SIRE Houston Therapeutic Horsemanship, St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital or The Texas Heart Institute.
A Memorial Service and celebration of Jim's life will be held at 1:00 in the afternoon, on Monday, January 22, 2018 at the First Presbyterian Church at 5300 Main Street, Houston, Texas 77004. Immediately following all are invited to a reception in the Fellowship Hall of the Church. There will be a private family burial.