During my first term as Sippican Historical Society President many years ago, I had the great pleasure of having a very distinguished individual from the corporate world on my Board: Jack Ludes. Jack brought a different level of thinking to the Historical Society. He encouraged us to broaden our mission, and to do things that would benefit the whole community. It was a great experience for all of us – working with Jack. Jack Ludes is this year’s recipient of the Sippican Historical Society’s Annual Award.
Jack was the former President and CEO of American Brands and the Acushnet Company. He brought years of successful business experience with him to Marion. Jack’s contributions to the community include serving on the Sippican Historical Society Board for many years; he still acts as our advisor. He has also been a great friend to Tobey Hospital, donating a room. For all of you who go to the Y, if you go in the men’s locker room, there’s a plaque that was donated by his foundation. Jack has donated property to the Sippican Lands Trust, namely the Ludes Estuary, off Creek Road. Jack helped the Sippican Historical Society raise funds to purchase and renovate the pharmacy building, when it came to the market. Then, he purchased the building from Historical Society for a substantial charitable donation to the Society in the process, because he wanted to help preserve the retail space in the village. He currently leases the building to China Trader Antiques. He also owns the parking lot with Jack Cheney, and they maintain the parking lot together – including snow removal. Many people don’t realize that; they incorrectly think that it’s public property belonging to the town. But that’s all Jack and Jack taking care of that. His project on 11 Hiller Street – the renovation of the old sail loft – has ensured the preservation of that wonderful building. He’s worked with St. Gabriel’s on capitol campaigns. He purchased the Wisner estate on Converse Road, and is saving the older buildings and the stone walls on the property.
Jack’s altruism has reached out not only to Marion, but to the whole south coast. He has been a member of the New Bedford Chamber of Commerce, Director with the New Bedford Food Bank, and a member of the Economic Development Council of Greater New Bedford. This area is fortunate to have such a kind, generous, positive-thinking individual, and the Sippican Historical Society appreciates all he has done for Marion and the surrounding area.
Dedication presented by Frank McNamee