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Gene Snowden receives Distinguished Service Award

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Huntington, Ind. ” Gene Snowden, former state senator and mayor of Huntington, was presented the Huntington College Foundation’s first Distinguished Service Award at the organization’s annual dinner tonight.

Snowden was presented the award by Huntington College president Blair Dowden and Huntington College Foundation president John Easterday.

Snowden has long been associated with the College. Lake Sno-Tip in the center of campus is named in part for Snowden. In 1997, Snowden was awarded the Huntington College Centennial Medallion.

At tonight’s banquet, before an audience of 170 regional business leaders, Foundation president John Easterday read the following citation in Snowden’s honor.



Today we honor Gene Snowden for his extraordinary service both to Huntington College and to Huntington County as a tireless advocate and public servant. Gene has devoted his life to improving quality of life in Huntington County and quality of education at Huntington College.

Gene Snowden was born and raised here in Huntington County. After attending Olivet Nazarene College, Gene returned to Huntington and soon began a forty-year career in the insurance industry. In addition to serving the needs of his clients, Gene devoted much of his career to public service.

Gene was elected to the Huntington County Council in 1962. Two years later, he successfully ran for the Indiana House of Representatives. After a two-year term, he was elected to the state Senate, where he continued to serve for 18 years. In this office, he held many influential positions, including serving six years as Assistant President Pro Tem, the second-highest post in the state Senate. Senator Snowden sponsored legislation that created the Indiana College Tax Credit. This measure provides a substantial tax credit to individuals, couples, and corporations that financially support Indiana’s institutions of higher learning. This legislation has helped engender significant philanthropic support for Huntington College and other Indiana colleges and universities.

In 1988, Gene Snowden returned to Huntington County and continued his life of public service. He served four years as County Auditor and in 1992 was elected Mayor of Huntington. Mayor Snowden initiated the popular citywide clean up program. He also helped establish a new city/county computer system, which linked all public agencies serving the community.

Gene Snowden’s public service was not limited to his tenure in public office, however. He has invested countless hours in a wide variety of community service organizations. Gene was instrumental in establishing the Huntington Optimist Club in 1960 and served as that organization’s first president. He has served on the board of the First Church of the Nazarene for more than four decades. At various times, he has provided volunteer leadership to the Police Athletic League (PAL), the Salvation Army, Huntington County Historical Society, the Boy Scouts, Huntington County Leadership, Pathfinder Services, and United Way. He has been an active member of the Huntington College Foundation and has also served on the Board of Trustees of Huntington College.

The Huntington College Foundation Distinguished Service Award honors those whose life embodies the very principles associated with the mission of the College. Recipients are those who give substance and credence to our beliefs, who serve as effective role models for our students, and who are recognized for their outstanding contributions to the local community. Recipient’s actions, as well as their words, bear persuasive witness to their commitment to the College and community. Their lives illustrate their commitment to the ideals of integrity, service, compassion, responsibility, faithfulness, discipline, and generosity.

Gene Snowden, on behalf of the Board of Directors of the Huntington College Foundation, and in recognition of your outstanding leadership and service to Huntington College and the local community, I present you with the Huntington College Foundation’s Distinguished Service Award.

Awarded this 12th day of September, 2002.

John H. Easterday, President
Huntington College Foundation

G. Blair Dowden, President
Huntington College