He served the citizens of Laurel County for over 20 years. Now his dedication to his community has been recognized with a road bearing his name.
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet recently announced the name of the connector road between West Ky. 80 (Hal Rogers Parkway) and Parker Road as Tom Jensen Highway.
KY 3006 runs from Arby's on West Ky. 80 parallel with Interstate 75 to Parker Road (also known as 16th Street to the I-75 overpass) and was named in Jensen's honor due to his acquiring funding for the project.
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet alerts motorists to look for newly installed honorary roadside signs recognizing community accomplishments and individuals who have improved the lives of fellow Kentuckians. The Department of Highways District 11 office installed signs in Laurel County displaying "Tom Jensen Highway" on KY 3006 designated by the 2020 General Assembly.
“Ceremonially naming roads and bridges is a popular tradition Kentuckians take pride in to recognize people and milestones that bring respect to the Commonwealth,” said Secretary Jim Gray.
“Tom Jensen is a man of integrity and has been a staple of our community for decades,” said Sen. Albert Robinson. “He has held numerous distinguished titles throughout his years of service. He has served as State Representative, he proceeded me in my current position as State Senator of the 21st District, and 27th Judicial Circuit Judge to name a few. Above all else, he is a loving husband and father, and a friend to many. This dedication in his name is not only a sign of his dedicated public service, but also of how beloved he is by our community. It was my pleasure to sponsor the resolution honoring a great man and a friend.”
Jensen said he was honored by the road bearing his name.
"It's an honor to me," he said. "When I was in the legislature, I put in funds to build that road. But the state operates on a five-year road plan. I guess since I retired, they wanted to do that to honor me."
Jensen said while serving in Frankfort, he was approached by many people regarding the connector road that gives motorists another route into downtown or to West Ky. 80. The road runs in front of Heritage Hills, which hosts a banquet hall and a history museum.
"The road gives better access to the tourism commission property and I can see where there could be a lot of development along that route," Jensen said. "There's a lot of land on both sides of that road that could be business development in the future."
Jensen credited his wife and daughters, Senators Albert Robinson and Robert Stivers, for the honor, but said he never dreamed or wanted the road named after him.
"I think my wife had a lot to do with it," he said. "It's a good area for new development, even if it takes 10 years or longer, but hopefully it will be utilized well."
"I'm very proud of having the road named after me," he said. "I never asked for my name to be on there, but I am honored."
Jensen served 10 years as state representative, 8 years in the Kentucky Senate and three years as Laurel Circuit Judge before retiring. He practiced law in London since the 1980's and was instrumental in obtaining funding for the road project.
Fifty-nine honorary names were designated statewide and will appear on 13 bridges, 29 roads and 16 honorary locations. Signage will remain posted indefinitely unless otherwise specified in House Joint Resolution 105.