Community & Public Service
Huntington, Indiana, and Ostend, Belgium, are a world apart. That was even more true in June of 1927, the year Huntington’s Arthur Sapp was elected as president of Rotary International in the European city, putting the small American town on the global map.
Born in Ravenna, Ohio, in 1883, Arthur Sapp worked his way through Ohio Wesleyan University as manager of a college boarding house. He received his degree in 1907. He taught high school Latin In Chattanooga, Tenn. until 1909. In September of that year, he came to Huntington, where he married his wife, Clara. He went to law school at the University of Chicago and at Indiana University, and began practicing law in Huntington in 1912. He served as prosecuting attorney for three terms.
He was elected to membership in the Huntington Rotary Club in 1917, several months after the local club was charted. He served as secretary and president of the local club, and was group representative and district governor. Beginning in 1924, Sapp became involved with Rotary International, serving in numerous positions before being elected international president in 1927 in Ostend, Belgium. At the time, Rotary included 150,000 members in 44 countries.
Sapp traveled the country and the world as Rotary president, and wasreceived by crowned heads of Europe and visited Rotary clubs across the country during his one-year term of office.
In addition to his activities with Rotary, Sapp served many other local organizations. He was a Trustee of DePauw University and Evansville College, President and Director of the Huntington Y.M.C.A., Chairman of the State School Aid Commission, and member of the State Highway Commission. He was also President of the Rural Bankers Legion Life Insurance Company of South Bend, and was chairman of the World Peace Indiana. He was a founding member of the Huntington County Chapter of the American Red Cross.
Arthur Sapp died August 9, 1946.