1994 Laureates

James C. White

James C. White was born in Solon, Michigan in 1890, the son of Nell Ferris White and Andrew John White, Jr. He was educated in Solon and Traverse City, Michigan, graduating from Traverse City BusinessCollege. During World War I, White served in the Tenth Engineers Division of the U.S. Army. He spent eighteen months in France as a master engineer and earned a Purple Heart. In 1920, White accepted Tennessee Eastman's job offer to become manager of timber and lumber operations. As White's career progressed, the company prospered. In 1925, he became the plant's general superintendent. During the span of 10 years, 1930 to 1940, White came vice-president and general manager, and sales grew exponentially from $2 million to $30 million.

In 1942, Tennessee Eastman became involved in the war effort. White received prestigious Manhattan District Special Award, authorized by the War Department, In recognition of his individual contribution to the country's nuclear program.

In 1945, White became president and general manager of Tennessee Eastman. In 1953, he was elected a director of Eastman Kodak, and in 1961, became a member of Kodak's executive committee.

When James C. White retired in 1969, he was head of the newly formed Eastman Chemicals Division with over 16,000 employees and plants in Tennessee, Texas, South Carolina and England. During his 24-year tenure as president, annual sales grew by over $500 million.

White was extremely active in civic and professional work. He was one of the incorporators of Holston Valley Community Hospital and the Kingsport Community Chest. He chaired the fund drive to create the Kingsport Public Library. Among his honors, White received honorary doctorates from both King College and Brown University. He was also a fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

James C. and Vera Wynkoop White had four children.