VU in the News

VU mourns the death of C. James McCormick

May 23, 2017 / Vincennes University mourns the death of C. James McCormick

VINCENNES, Ind. - Vincennes University President Chuck Johnson issued this statement this morning about the May 22 death of longtime VU Board of Trustees member C. James McCormick.

“The Vincennes University family is deeply saddened by the loss of C. James McCormick who served on the VU Board of Trustees with distinction for almost two decades. His service on the VU Board, including six years as its chair, were remarkable years of progress thanks in part to his visionary leadership and generous philanthropy, particularly in support of the Mac McCormick Scholarship and the creation of the Red Skelton Museum of American Comedy. The Museum is appropriately part of VU’s Red Skelton Performing Arts Center, which he also supported from concept to completion. Jim’s legacy of service to others will live on at Vincennes University, the VU Foundation, the Skelton Museum Foundation, and the community, state, and nation he loved.”


C. James McCormick served almost 20 years on the VU Board of Trustees. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels appointed McCormick in January 2007 to complete the term of McCormick’s late son, C.J. “Mac” McCormick III, who died on Oct. 26, 2006. This marked the second time that McCormick had served as a member of the VU Board of Trustees. He also served from 1990 through 1999, including six years as chair of the VU Board. He followed in the footsteps of his father, the late Clarence McCormick, who also served as chair during his service on the VU Board of Trustees from 1953 to 1976.

VU awarded McCormick its Walter A. Davis Memorial Citation in 2001 for community service. He was also the recipient of a 2002 VU Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration.

McCormick served as chair of 1st Bancorp and First Federal Bank in Vincennes until December 1998, and had served on the bank’s board since 1966. He retired from the Board of German American Bancorp in 2003 and from the Board of First American Bank in 2004. He also served eight years as a director of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis.

He retired as chair of McCormick, Inc., and Best Way Express, Inc., on March 31, 2000, and was chair emeritus of both. He was serving as president of JAMAC Corp., all headquartered in Vincennes.

McCormick was a major shareholder and board chair of Golf Hosts, Inc., the parent company of the Innisbrook Resort, Tarpon Springs, Florida, and the Tamarron Resort, Durango, Colorado, until the company was sold in 1997.

McCormick was a life member of the Board and former first vice president of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, and a past director of the Vincennes Area Chamber of Commerce. He was also former chair of the Board of the American Trucking Association, Inc., and a life member of the ATA Board of Directors; director and past chair and president of the Indiana Motor Truck Association, Inc.; and former chair of the Aeronautics Commission of Indiana. He was a former vice president of the Board and member of the Executive Committee of the Automotive Hall of Fame, and former chair of the Board of the National Highway Users Federation and the Indiana Highway Users Federation. He was a director of Broker’s National Life Assurance Company, Little Rock, Arkansas.

McCormick was actively involved in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes for over 40 years. He served on the National Board of Trustees for 12 years and was a past chair of the National Board of Trustees of FCA, serving as chair during 1987-90. He was a director emeritus on the National Board of Trustees. A lifelong Methodist, he was a member of the Community United Methodist Church of Vincennes. He formerly taught Sunday school.

He was past president and a member of Kiwanis, Elks, Masons, Scottish Rite 33, and Shrine. In the mid-1970s, McCormick also served on the Board of Trustees of the University of Evansville.

McCormick was a lifelong resident of Knox County. He was married to the former Bettye Gramelspacher for more than 50 years, and she passed away on Feb. 28, 1997. He and Bettye were the parents of four children and 10 grandchildren. Their youngest son, C.J. “Mac” McCormick III, died on October 26, 2006, just five days after his 55th birthday.

In 1998 McCormick married Marilyn Hanson, who has three children and four grandchildren.


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