CENTRE ASSOCIATE OF THE YEAR FOR 2006
JAMES L. ROGERS III
Students of Greek mythology will recall that Prometheus, a Titan, was punished by Zeus for stealing fire from the gods and giving it to mankind. Specifically, he was punished for his “philanthropy” – i.e., for his “love of mankind.”
Surely, education is the modern equivalent of fire. The educated young man or woman of today has powers that exceed those reserved for the gods in the imagination of our ancient forebears. In this sense, people who give of their time, talent, and resources to create the opportunity for a life-shaping education for others are most deserving of the title “philanthropist.” This is certainly true of our 2006 Associate of the Year, James L. Rogers III.
Jim Rogers gives generously of his time, talent, and resources in serving on the governing board of two colleges, including Centre, neither of which is his alma mater. In addition, he is one of three trustees of the Lon and Jessie Rogers Educational Trust, which provides more than a half million dollars annually in financial aid to needy and worthy Kentucky students, with preference given to students from Muhlenberg, Ohio, and Pike counties. A member of the Centre College Board of Trustees since 1989, he chairs the Finance Committee, while also serving on several other committees. He plays a vital role in keeping C entre fiscally sound, so that the College can provide a life-shaping education to those bright and highly motivated students who pursue their educational goals at Centre.
A native Kentuckian, Jim now lives in Florida, where he serves as chief executive officer of The Packers of Indian River, a citrus growing and packing firm located in Fort Pierce. Even so, he and his wife, Mary, continue to maintain strong ties to Kentucky and especially to Muhlenberg County, where they maintain a home and have business interests. Jim is a graduate of The McCallie School and holds both the Bachelor of Arts and Juris Doctorate degrees from Vanderbilt University. He practiced law in Nashville, Tennessee, prior to taking over the operation of The Packers of Indian River in 1980. Jim is a member of the Board of Directors of the Indian River Citrus League and the Board of Trustees of Lindsey Wilson College. Jim and Mary are members of St. Mark’s Anglican Church of Vero Beach, Florida. They have five children, including daughter Elizabeth Rogers Garavaglia, a 1992 graduate of Centre.
In grateful recognition of his tireless efforts on behalf of higher education in Kentucky, his outstanding service to Centre College, and his exemplary life and career, we are pleased to recognize James L. Rogers III as the Centre Associate of the Year for 2006.