James M. Middleton

While at Jeff, Jim was a member of the National Forensic League, Student Council, HI-Y, all school play, basketball, intra-mural league, speech/debate team, special chemistry, physics, and math programs.

Jim received a B.S. degree in management from Indiana University and obtained an MBA at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He finished four Air Force service schools, including the Air War College and Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Residence. Jim retired in 1988 from the U.S. Air Force as a Colonel after serving 21 years including two tours at the Pentagon. He served in a variety of positions including the Office of the Secretary of the Air Force; Commandant Officer Training School; executive officer to a major air command; commander/ director of Plans and Technology; and Manpower programmer/planner.

Jim joined United Services Automobile Association in 1988 which serves military forces worldwide, retirees and families. Jim has held several key positions in the company and in March 2000 was promoted to president and chief executive officer of the Life Insurance Company. Jim also serves on various industry committees which include Life Office Management Association, American Council of Life Insurers, Life Insurance Marketing Association and the Texas Association of Life & Health Insurers. He is involved in the San Antonio Fine Arts & Symphony, United Way Campaign, Holiday Cheer Program, Junior Achievement fund raising event, Read to Children, and Habitat for Humanity Home Building Program.

Jim is former president of the Comal Independent School District board of Trustees and former president of the high school athletic booster club. He has coached soccer, baseball and basketball.

John Robert “Bob” Miller

While at Jeff Bob was a member of the basketball and track teams and student manager of the football team. He was also active in student organizations. Upon graduation from Jeff he attended the University of Arizona on a scholarship for 3 years. In 1942 Bob enlisted in the United States Marines Officer Training Program and later transferred to the United State Naval Aviation Program where he graduated as pilot with the rank of Ensign and was later promoted to Lt. JG.

After military service he enrolled at Purdue where he earned a BS and MS in Education. He taught at Jefferson High School teaching aeronautics and health. He was also an assistant coach in basketball, football and track and supervised the boys intramural sports program.

In 1948 Bob moved to Delphi High School and was their first varsity football coach, varsity basketball coach and an assistant in track. He taught health, physical education and general science and was the athletic director. Bob then moved to LaPorte and taught biology and continued coaching. Bob then moved through the chairs of counseling, assistant principal, associate superintendent and superintendent. He retired in 1985 after 33 years in the school corporation.

Bob was active in professional and community affairs. He was elected to the executive committee, North Central Division, of the Indiana State Teachers Association; was on the executive committee of the Indiana Association of Junior-Senior High School Principals and was president of the Indiana Public School Study Council. Bob was a charter member of the Purdue North Central Chancellor’s Advisory Board.

Bob was named to the Indiana Silver Anniversary All-State basketball team. He later was named to the Arizona Hall of Fame Silver Anniversary Team, which included both high school and college players.

Delinda “Denny” Fee

Delinda was in the last graduating class from the “Old” Jefferson High School. While at Jeff, Delinda was active as a Junior Varsity and Varsity cheerleader, served on the Cheerleader’s Advisory Board, volunteered as an office scout, was a member of the Broncho Broadcasters Club, the Sunshine Society and Student Council.

After graduation from Jefferson High School Delinda attended Lafayette Beauty Academy. Upon receiving her beauty license she worked at the Beauty Walk Hair Salon and later taught cosmetology at Lafayette Beauty Academy.

Delinda’s work in daycare began over 30 years ago. She says that providing daycare for children is her passion in life. Denny hopes that each and every child that has been a part of her life has something positive to remember from their stay at “Denny’s Daycare.” Denny believes that children have a way of always bringing a smile to your face and that makes for a great day on the job! Denny also feels blessed to have nurtured hundreds of children passing thru her door and has watched many of them grow into adulthood.

Richard Stewart Halstead

Upon graduation from Jefferson High School, Richard attended The Chicago Academy of Fine Arts, graduating in 1970. He also attended Purdue University and the Ontario College of Art. He apprenticed at the Stevens, Biondi and Diccico Advertising Studio, and with the Portrait Artist Gustav Likan, in Chicago.

Richard taught fine art at the Ontario College of Art and later at the American Academy of Art in Chicago. In 1983 he founded the Halstead Portrait and Figure Workshop at the Noyes Cultural Arts Center in Evanston, Il., and devoted his energies entirely to portraiture work and teaching figurative art.

Richard has exhibited in galleries and group exhibitions in Canada and the U.S., such as; The Oil Painters of America (as a signature member), the Washington Society of Portrait Artists at the US Capitol Building, Ontario Society of Artists, The Portrait Institute in New York, the Montreal Museum of Art, the Ontario Museum of Art, the Ditmar Gallery of Northwestern University, Portraits Inc. (New York), the Chicago Civic Center, and the State of Illinois Building.

His paintings are in the collections of Yale University, The National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Purdue University, University of Melbourne (Australia), Baird and Warner, University of Toronto, Ryerson Steel/Inland Steel, Dartmouth College, University of Kentucky, and Rush Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center.

Some of Richard’s portrait subjects include Governor of Illinois George Ryan, Roman Catholic Prelate and Archbishop of Chicago Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, President of Field Enterprises and Chairman of the Boards of the Chicago Art Institute and Terra Museum of Art Marshal Field V, and Purdue University President Dr. Steven Beering.

Richard H. Crosser

While a student at Jefferson High School, Dick was Sophomore Class Vice President and Junior Class Vice President. He was involved in Hi-Y, Student Council, J-Club, Red and Black Revue, Cross Country, Wrestling, Baseball, Purdue Legislature, and Boy’s State.

Dick attended Indiana University through a scholarship/internship program sponsored by National Homes Corp., then the nation’s largest homebuilder. After graduating in 1960, he spent 15 years with National Homes, leaving as Vice President/Regional Manager.

In 1975, he joined Deluxe Homes as Vice President and General Manager. Seven years later he bought controlling interest and grew a homebuilding company becoming Indiana’s largest builder. In 1993, the company went public emerging as Crossmann Communities, Inc. In 2001 Crossmann became America’s 12th largest homebuilder. Crossmann then merged with Beazer Homes.

While President of Crossmann Communities, he was involved with Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics, Make a Wish Foundation, American Heart Association and initiated the Crossmann Communities Scholarship Fund, now called the Richard H. Crosser Memorial Fund.

Dick was committed to giving back to communities where he worked, built homes, and lived. That commitment to giving back is continued by his family through the Crosser Family Foundation, established in 2002. The foundation has contributed to St. Vincent’s Children Hospital in Indianapolis, Boys and Girls Club in Noblesville, Third Phase in Noblesville thru the Legacy Fund and Jefferson High School’s “Build the Future” program.