Judy Gay, a lifelong Texan and leader in McKinney, was honored during the McKinney Chamber of Commerce’s 2016 Community Awards Celebration with the Carey Cox Citizen of the Year Award.

Bill Cox, Vice President of the Carey Cox Company and former student of Gay, presented the award, praising her for her tireless work, giving back to the community without any expectation of compensation. “She has supported countless organizations in McKinney with her time, her talents, and her gifts. She lives and works with passion – she ‘gets it!’ ” said Cox.

Gay began her career with McKinney Independent School District in 1979 as an English and Creative Writing teacher where she demonstrated an abiding commitment to education issues and was a positive role model to countless students. She was a sponsor for the Whiz Quiz Team, National Honor Society, and for the Creative Writing Student Published Book, “Spindrift,” in 1985. She was awarded Teacher of the Year before retiring in 1986.

Judy Gay - 2016 Carey Cox Citizen of the Year Award winner

A woman of many talents and interests, Gay began her business career in 1986 with the opening of a women’s shoe boutique called Sister’s Attic with her sister Joan Coleman.

In 1990 she became a realtor with Ebby Halliday Realtors and assisted with the establishment of the McKinney office in 1997. She won numerous awards including:

  • Lead Agent – Judy Gay Group
  • Eagle Award from Ebby Halliday REALTORS for Company-wide Top Team runner-up, 1999
  • Top Honor Roll – Ebby Halliday Realtors
  • D Magazine Top Realtors, 2003
  • Ebby Halliday Yellow Rose Award (McKinney), 2006 and 2014
  • McKinney Magazine Top 25 Women in Business, 2010
  • Texas Monthly 5-Star Professional, 2012

Gay has shown outstanding community service through her leadership and volunteer roles in McKinney by serving on committees such as the McKinney Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Heard Museum, as President of the American Cancer Society North Collin Chapter, and with the Collin County Children’s Advocacy Center to name just a few. Gay continues to serve on the Library Advisory Board for the City of McKinney. She was also the recipient of the Leadership McKinney Alumni of the Year award in 2013.

Both she and her husband John were given the absolute highest honor when the City of McKinney named the City’s first branch library in their honor – The John and Judy Gay Library. The new library opened in 2009, the year of John and Judy’s 50th wedding anniversary. They used their celebration party again for the benefit of the community, raising over $30,000 for the new library to purchase books.

Cox closed by praising Gay saying, “She is the example of how to give back, how to help others, and how to be successful.”


About the McKinney Chamber of Commerce

The McKinney Chamber of Commerce is an advocate for the McKinney business community and proudly serves as the unified business voice of McKinney. The Chamber, which celebrated its Centennial in 2014, represents over 40,000 employees from more than 1,200 business investors in McKinney and throughout the North Texas region. With a rich heritage of leadership and collaboration, the Chamber works in concert with the City of McKinney, community partners and the corporate community to promote, advocate for and expand business. Through, and associated social media pages and feeds, the McKinney Chamber markets the community’s advantages as the foremost location for doing business and to keep a growing community connected. You can find the McKinney Chamber of Commerce on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.