Class of 2016



Lynton Keith Caldwell

Indiana’s Mr. Ecology

Born in Iowa in 1913, Lynton Keith Caldwell (1913 – 2006) moved with his family to Hammond, Indiana where his lifelong love of the natural world originated with the frequent trips he would make over the following years to explore the rare Indiana Dunes Ecosystem. He also became active in the protracted, ultimately successful effort to create the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore (now the Indiana Dunes National Park).

After obtaining his Master’s degree at Harvard and his Ph.D. in political science at the University of Chicago, Caldwell embarked on a long and successful career in public administration. At age 26, he became Secretary of Indiana University’s South Bend Mishawaka Extension Center, later moving to a position with the Council of State Governments in Chicago. In 1947, he moved with his wife, Helen, to Albany to direct a new Syracuse-New York University-sponsored civil service training program. Special appointments took him on missions to Columbia, the Philippines and, in 1954, to Turkey. During these years he became increasingly concerned by escalating problems of unchecked pollution and environmental degradation.

In 1956, after a year of teaching at UC Berkeley, Caldwell accepted a position with the School of Government at IU Bloomington to administer a newly established joint public administration program with Thailand, which later extended to Indonesia. Over the next few years, his work took him around the world.

In 1962, Caldwell made the radical decision to step down from his position in order to pioneer the development of an entirely new academic subfield: environmental policy and administration studies. During the next decade, he worked virtually singlehanded on this endeavor, traveling widely to promote his ideas for countries to start incorporating environmental considerations into their public policy planning. In 1967, his groundbreaking work led to a consultancy in Washington D.C. with Senator Henry Jackson for whom he drafted the nation’s keystone environmental law, the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. His insistence on “action-forcing” wording in the statute also resulted in the important Environmental Impact Statement provisions that require concerned federal agencies to carry out detailed studies before embarking on any major project having potentially negative impacts on the environment. Following this success in 1972, Caldwell realized another long hard fought dream with the opening of IU’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

For the next 25 years, Caldwell continued to teach, lecture and act as a consultant on environmental affairs to institutions, universities and government entities both in the United States and across the globe. Among many awards and citations, in 1982 the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) elected him to its Global 500 Roll of Honor. He also authored 15 books and some 300 peer-reviewed articles.

Note: Susan Lennis, “Indiana’s Mr. Ecology,” Indianapolis Star Magazine, December 10, 1973.

Lynton Keith Caldwell was nominated by Wendy Read Wertz and Elaine Caldwell Emmi with Lee Botts.



Nelson Algren

Author of A Walk on the Wild Side

“Never Play Cards with a man called Doc. Never eat at a place called Mom’s. Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own.” From A Walk on the Wild Side (1955).

Nelson Algren (1909-1981) found fame with the publication of his 1949 book, The Man with the Golden Arm, and then a controversial movie that followed in 1955 starring Frank Sinatra and Kim Novak. As in all his work, The Man with the Golden Arm turned a harsh spotlight on the lives of the poor, addicted, alcoholic and afflicted. His focus on the “people on the other side of the billboard” as he put it set him in stark contrast to his literary contemporaries.

Algren’s family spent part of their lives in Black Oak, Indiana. As a teenager, Algren discovered and became enamored with the dunes of Lake Michigan. His visits there prompted him to use the first substantial money he ever received for writing to purchase a cottage on the lagoon in Miller, Indiana. His place on the lagoon served as a creative oasis for him, where he worked on A Walk on the Wild Side and many other literary endeavors throughout the 1950s.

The life and times of Nelson Algren are as fascinating as his literary output. Coming from modest means, and graduating from college at the height of the Great Depression, he explored the experience and consequences of poverty by riding the rails in the 1930s as a hobo, picking fruit with migrant laborers and working as a carny, all the while documenting the lives of those whose only sin was owning nothing. After gaining fame from The Man with the Golden Arm, he began a decades-long love affair with French existentialist Simone de Beauvoir, who visited him at his Miller cabin. While he wrote, she began a treatise on women and women’s position in the world. Algren counseled her that women were considered a second-class sex, inferior to men, much as African Americans were considered second-class to white America at the time. As a result, she named her book The Second Sex, and began a revolution that changed the world.

After serving in World War II, he returned to America suffering through the Cold War and McCarthyism. While not politically active, his identification with the “down-and-out” made him be viewed as a threat to the US and his passport was denied, jeopardizing his transatlantic relationship with de Beauvoir. He maintained his empathy for the underdog even as the cultural sea changed to post-WWII prosperity caused him to lose favor as well as the ability to earn money.

Readers of Nelson Algren are unable to walk past the poor “stumblebums” of the street without concern. As biographer Bettina Drew stated, “Algren demands compassion” from his readers. He demands sympathy for the less fortunate. His realistic portrayal of the poor has made him able to be considered the Dostoevsky of American Literature.

In 1950, Algren was presented with the first National Book Award by Eleanor Roosevelt. Three months before he died in 1981, he was elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. Upon his death, the Chicago Tribune created the Nelson Algren Literary Awards for original short fiction, which catapulted many noted authors to fame. More than 4,200 entries were considered for the award in 2016.

Nelson Algren was nominated by Sue Rutsen and George Rogge, Founders of The Nelson Algren Society of Miller Beach. Photographs by Art Shay © 1953-2016.



Chief Clyde Hamilton McMillan

Founder of Task Force Tips

Clyde Hamilton McMillan (1930-1982) was born chasing fire trucks. His parents would say that from the moment he could walk he wanted to RUN chasing fire trucks. He graduated with honors as a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Iowa in 1951. Being at the top of his class brought him 13 offers of employment. He took the lowest paying one and went to work for American La France in Elmira, New York, the most iconic name in fire engines. It was in Elmira that he first became a volunteer firefighter.

Fortunately, things did not work out at American La France and he found himself taking a job at Gary Sheet and Tin as a metallurgical engineer. He found himself missing the volunteer fire service while living in the city which had a paid department. It wasn’t long before he approached Gary Fire Chief John Massa with a radical idea. Clyde wanted to start a volunteer department to support the paid department on major incidents. His idea was that if the volunteers mopped up the lost causes then the city department firefighters could get back in service and hopefully prevent the next call from growing into something bigger.

While building this new department, Clyde responded to the Standard Oil fire of 1955 in Whiting, Indiana. At the time, this fire was the largest industrial loss in U.S. history. During the blaze, a 3-million-gallon tank of Naphtha exploded. Clyde tried to protect himself with a nozzle that was not capable of fog by trying to crank his water cannon to a higher angle. He was not fast enough and without protection was severely burned. This incident taught him a lesson that he never forgot: the old-fashioned nozzles with a simple hole through them were not adequate to protect a fireman when things went wrong.

One day, while sitting in a restaurant on 5th Avenue in Gary, an idea occurred to him. If he put a spring in the nozzle, he could control the pressure, much like when someone watering his or her garden puts a finger over the flow. He took his idea to all the manufacturers of nozzles and they all told him that there was no market for it. One company, however, took his idea and started to produce it. But Clyde had ideas that went far beyond his basic concept, and with those ideas, he decided to start a business making products to compete. His company started in the basement of his home in Hobart, Indiana with his family members. Today, Task Force Tips in Valparaiso employs more than 250 people, and its products are in nearly every country on earth.

Clyde Hamilton McMillan was nominated by Ian S. McMillan with Stewart G. McMillan.

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