James A. Sanders
Evansville - James A. Sanders, age 82, passed away Thursday, June 25, 2020 at his home. The son of the late Roy W. and Adelaide Daudistel Sanders, he was born in Evansville, April 27, 1938.
Mr. Sanders was a respected educator and administrator and nationally regarded as an American antiques expert, consultant, and appraiser. He taught English and journalism in the Henderson, Kentucky public schools; was a business teacher at North High School in Evansville where he established and coordinated the distributive education program; and served as the district state supervisor for educational marketing instruction. In 1985, he left teaching to become the University of Southern Indiana's first director of Historic New Harmony, where he combined his marketing knowledge with his interest in historic preservation. After 10 years, Jim accepted a position as director of corporate and foundation relations at the University, playing a key role in the University's first capital campaign. He also supervised the interior design/holiday decor committee of the University Home, established the Art Collection Committee, and obtained funding to support the impressive teaching collection. He was instrumental in establishing the Kenneth P. McCutchan Art Center/Palmina F. and Stephen S. Pace Galleries in the liberal Arts Center.
Mr. Sanders made a generous planned gift to the USI Foundation to endow Presidential Scholarships, establish a distinguished professorship, and support the Art Collection fund. In recognition of his leadership in University administration and his service to the southwestern Indiana region, the University conferred on him an honorary Doctor of laws degree in 2001.
He received a bachelor's degree in marketing from the University of Evansville and a master's degree in business from Indiana State University. As an antiques expert, he lectured and taught internationally. He was a board member of the prestigious national Decorative Arts Trust.
Many civic and professional organizations have benefited from Mr. Sanders's involvement. His memberships included the boards of the Evansville Preservation Alliance, Evansville Museum of Arts, History, and Science, Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, Posey County Community Foundation, USI Foundation, U.S. Office of Education Region V, Ivy Tech State College Advisory Board for Office Education, University of Michigan Vocational Advisory Group, and the State Distributive Education Clubs of America. For several years he was chair of the Robert Lee Blaffer Foundation as well as the history committee of the Evansville Museum of Arts, History, and Science, and served as president of Harmonie Associates. Jim was life Director of the Reitz Home Preservation Society, a life Director of the Rapp-Owen Granary Foundation and was a committed volunteer and leadership donor to the Granary's restoration, completed in 1999. He also was active in establishing the Premiere Society of the Public Education Foundation of Evansville.
Among his many awards, Mr. Sanders treasured the Arts Advocate of the Year award from the Arts Council of Southwestern Indiana, the Special Recognition award from the USI Alumni Association, the Nicholson Leadership Award from the USI Foundation, as well as being named a Life Director, member of the President's Circle, and the Carter Society. Receiving the highest recognition from the University of Southern Indiana, an honorary doctorate, was his most cherished honor.
Mr. Sanders was preceded in death by his sister, Doris Jean Sanders Halwes, and his nephew, Joel T. Halwes. He is survived by his nephews, Jeff Halwes (Lan) and Jon Halwes; step-niece, Hebing Wang; brother-in-law, Elmer W. Halwes, Jr.; and close friends, Darla Olberding, Charlie Farber, and Albert Owen.
Visitation will be Sunday, June 28, 2020 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Ziemer Funeral Home North Chapel, 6300 N. First Ave., Evansville, IN 47710. Visitation will continue Monday from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home. Funeral service will begin at 11:00 a.m. at the funeral home with Reverend Emily Slade officiating.
Burial will be at Oak Hill Cemetery.
Jim and his family would like to thank his caregivers, especially Tina.
Jim requested gifts to honor his memory be made to the USI Foundation, James A. Sanders Art Collection Fund, 8600 University Blvd. Evansville, Indiana 47712 or www.usi.edu/onlinegiving
Condolences may be made online at www.ziemerfuneralhome.com