Tom Lugar is an engineer known not only for upholding his family’s business, but also improving his community. He has served as a board member for various local companies and organizations and, after a short stint in the U.S. Army (and the passing of his father), took the reins of Thomas L. Green and Co., which was started by his grandfather.

A 1951 graduate of Shortridge High School, Lugar attended Purdue University, where he received a degree in engineering.

The Indianapolis native recently talked about being a proud IPS alum and how IPS, specifically Shortridge, helped prepare him for his professional journey.

Early life in Indianapolis …

I live here and grew up here. I love Indianapolis. I have one brother and one sister. Growing up, I enjoyed croquet with my neighborhood friends. I attended grade school at William A. Bell School 60 through eighth grade, and then I went to Shortridge for the remainder of my adolescent education.

Your experience at Shortridge …

I had a very pleasant experience at Shortridge. I really enjoyed it. They had wonderful teachers and I still remember a lot of them. I played sports, including football; we won the city championship in 1949 when I was a junior. My senior year I had the pleasure of being co-captain on the football team. I had a wonderful football coach, Coach George Gale. He was a very good coach and mentor. He was a role model for a lot of students. Aside from football, I also ran track. I graduated in 1951.

Fondest IPS memory as a student …

I was involved in a lot of activities. I was involved in Shortridge symphony and played the violin. I participated in Shortridge vaudeville. I loved participating in these activities, but I still loved sports above anything else. Next to graduating in 1951, winning the city football championship in 1949 was a very fond memory for me with IPS.

My IPS education prepared me for ….

Life. (Shortridge) was a great school to prepare for college. I went to Purdue University, one of the best engineering schools in the country. I wanted to go to college to be an engineer and Shortridge helped prepare me for that.

Higher Education …

I graduated from Purdue University with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1955. My college experience was great as well – I love Purdue. I enjoyed my classes and the subject matter being taught. I also enjoyed being a member of a fraternity, Beta Theta Pi.

My life since graduating …

After college, I joined the Jet Engine Development Program at Allison Division of General Motors. I was later drafted into the Army and served in 1956. I was active for six months. My initial intention was to serve seven years in the reserves, but after my father passed away, I could leave with an honorable discharge to help in our family business. My father was the president of our family business (Thomas L. Green and Co., founded by my grandfather).

I have been with Thomas L. Green Co. since January 1957. I started working in the shop, then in the engineering and sales departments, and was elected president in 1972. In 2001, we merged with Reading Bakery Systems Inc. in Pennsylvania. Today, I serve as a consultant for the company. I am still listed as chairman of the board.

Proudest accomplishments …

First, becoming an Eagle Scout as a freshman in high school. I am proud of being the president of the company my grandfather started. I am very proud of my wife, my children, and all our family. It was great having a nice family and being able to participate with them while they were growing up.

Additionally, some of my proudest civic involvements include:

  • Past chairman of the board of Methodist Hospital of Indiana
  • Past president of the Rotary Club of Indianapolis
  • Past member of the board of the Children’s Museum

Family…

I have been married to my wife Sally since 1958 and we have three children – Todd, Scott and Nancy. My wife and I enjoy spending time with our five grandchildren. Two of my grandsons followed my footsteps and graduated from Purdue University. Overall, my family are active, church-going, good people who are doing well and are compatible with each other. I love that we are a close-knit family and I am very proud of each one of them.

Interests/Hobbies …

I have a greenhouse in which I enjoy growing orchid plants. I also collect stamps and coins. I have been collecting both items since I was about 10 years old. Photography has always been a long-time interest of mine. I enjoy taking pictures of people and my family.

Vision/Dreams …

I hope that we can continue to live in a land of freedom and democracy. I can only hope that my kids and grandkids have the same opportunities that I did.

Final Quote …

“Work hard with honesty and integrity, strive for perfection, help others and love your family.”