W. Phillip Saunders

W. Phillip Saunders, former instructor in economics, 1961-1962, died on May 28, 2017, in Bloomington, Indiana.

(The following appeared online at dignity.com, May 2017:)

W. Phillip Saunders, 82, of Bloomington, died May 28, 2017. Born September 3, 1934, in Morgantown, West Virginia, Phil was the son of Warren P. Saunders and Thelma Dotson Saunders. He married Nancy Lee Trainor on June 16, 1956, and their marriage was blessed with five children and twelve grandchildren.

Phil received a BA Degree from Penn State University in 1956; a MA Degree from the University of Illinois in 1957; and a Ph. D degree in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1964. He held teaching positions at M.I.T., Bowdoin College, and Carnegie-Mellon University before becoming a Professor of Economics at Indiana University in 1970. In addition to his teaching and research at IU, Professor Saunders served as the Director of the Center for Economic Education for 28 years and as the faculty coordinator for the large-enrollment, multi-section courses Introduction to Microeconomics and Introduction to Macroeconomics. He also served as an Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences from 1974-78 and as Chair of the Department of Economics from 1988-92. Professionally, he served two four year terms on the American Economic Association’s Committee on Economic Education, and he served as first vice president of the Midwest Economics Association and as President of the Society of Economic Educators.

At IU Phil received two distinguished teaching awards: the Senior Class Council Award in 1974 and the Amoco Foundation Award in 1981. His profile in the millennium edition of the Marquis WHO’S WHO IN AMERICA also lists four awards from national organizations: the Villard Award for Distinguished Research from The National Association of Economic Educators; the George Washington Honor Medal and a Leavy Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge; and the Distinguished Service Award from the National Council on Economic Education. In addition to extensive consulting and speaking throughout the United States, Phil conducted workshops in economics education for college professors and high school teachers in Azerbaijan, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and before his retirement in 1998.

Phil was a member of the First United Methodist Church. In addition to playing for the Church’s men’s softball team, he served on several committees, including twelve years as Chair of the Staff-Parish Relations Committee. He was a little league baseball coach, and helped coach the Bloomington Babe Ruth 16-year-old State Champion baseball teams in 1985, 1986, and 1988. Following his retirement, Phil became an active member of the IU Men’s Golf Group, and he served on the Board of Directors and volunteered extensively at the Shalom Community Center. He was also active in the Interfaith Winter Night Shelter program, and Monroe County United Ministries’ Wednesday Food Pantry. He was presented a Be More Bloomington Award by the Bloomington Volunteer Network in 2012 “For his passion and commitment to people in poverty.”

A dedicated family man, Phil loved mysteries, puzzles, and games. He was always Professor Plum in three generations of family Clue games. Phil was preceded in death by his parents, an infant brother, and his beloved wife of 56 years and 169 days. He is survived by a sister, Anne Bloxom (husband Bruce) of Carmel, California, children Kathleen McIntire of Wadsworth OH, Kevin Saunders (wife Marian) of Roswell, GA, Keith Saunders (wife Ann) of Carmel, IN, Kent Saunders (wife Chrissie) of Anderson, SC, Kristine Beyer (Cary Craciunoiu) of Avon, IN, and grandchildren Rachel McIntire, Eileen McIntire, Amy Saunders, Laura Saunders, Kyle Saunders, Reed Saunders, Adam Saunders, Kelcey Saunders, Kendra Saunders, Khloe Saunders, Kyle Craciunoiu and Kayla Craciunoiu.

Visitation will be at Day and Deremiah-Frye Funeral home on Thursday, June 1, 2017 from 4-8 p.m. A service will follow on Friday June 2, 2017 at First United Methodist Church at 1 p.m. with additional viewing and family visitation starting at noon. Entombment will be in Valhalla Memory Gardens.

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