They said they wanted to leave a legacy, and Judge Carlton Sanders and his wife Sue have left their mark on higher education in Southern Indiana.
The Lanesville couple have given more than $3 million to their alma matter, Indiana University Southeast, and have also financially supported Ivy Tech Community College of Southern Indiana.
They credit their post-retirement monetary success to fortuitous investments, and yet it’s the students and faculty at local educational institutions that have had the good fortune of being blessed with the philanthropy of the Sanders.
And the former Harrison County judge knows first-hand how important and liberating a solid education can be.
“No one in my family had gone to school prior to myself,” he said. “So when I finished my undergraduate courses, it made me feel quite good frankly.”
Carlton Sanders attended the IU Southeast campus in Jeffersonville when it was located at Warder Park. Sue Sanders attended the Floyd County campus, and they both have fond memories of their time at the university.
“We chose IUS because we love IUS, and we have ties to IUS,” Carlton Sanders said. “It gave so much to us.”
The couple understands the importance of having a four-year university close to home. Carlton Sanders said he wouldn’t have been able to have afforded to attend the IU Bloomington campus, and that IU Southeast allowed him to further his education and realize his potential.
After their retirements, the couple focused on boosting IU Southeast. Both business graduates, the Sanders began with an endowment to bolster the IUS School of Business.
About a decade ago, the Sanders Chair position was established through a donation by the couple, and that slot has been filled by Uric Dufrene for the past several years.
In addition to instructing students, Dufrene has contributed to educating the public about business through lectures, annual financial updates and media commentary.