Alumni & Donor Stories...
The Hoosier Experience - 12/20/2010
When the new Undergraduate building opens its doors, a classroom honoring a gift from Jim Huffer (BS’51) and wife Betty of Carmel will represent a lifelong commitment to Indiana University and emotional ties that are unique to the Hoosier experience. Jim was able to immediately leverage his IU diploma, though not as expected. When he was drafted, his education earned him a position in the Counter Intelligence Corps. A sour job market awaited Jim after his military service. At the advice of his father, a barber in his hometown of Frankfort, he took a job as a barber and beauty supply salesman. That led the Huffers to open their own supply business based on the east side of Indianapolis. The growth of the business necessitated an expansion of their space. Hoping to find a bit more room to grow, they bought land that was a bit removed from the city. “We got even deeper into real estate when we bought farmland in Castleton in 1970,” explained Jim. “Luckily for us, my farm land turned out to be located between the interstate and the largest mall in the state of Indiana. And so we became involved in commercial real estate.” “We hardly ever missed a football game,” Jim said with pride. “I was part of the Twelfth Man Club, a 60-member group that kicked in the first $600,000 of a $4 million overhaul of the football facilities. We raised that money at one dinner in one night.” The Huffer Classroom was selected by Betty, who, her husband explained, always had an eye for a great location. “It will have a nice view,” said Betty. “It is a well-thought out building. It is wonderful that the architects have maintained such a wonderful historic look in their designs for the building.” “It’s no secret that fundraising is a challenge in this tepid economy,” noted Rick Dupree, Assistant Dean of Development and Alumni Relations.“Major financial investments like those of the Huffers in Kelley projects speak louder than ever. They reinforce that the passion for our School and its associated programs and projects is not shared simply by those of us on campus, but by our devoted constituents world-wide.”
For more information regarding this story, please contact
Tom Bewley - Kelley School of Business, Office of Development & Alumni Relations.