James Louis Andersen West Des Moines Upon hearing the song of a thousand voices, then seeing the red sky at night, sailor's delight, Jim charted his final course. And like Siddhartha, with the wind at his sails, joined the unity of one voice on the river. The water was Jim's spiritual home. It was out on his sailboat that he could observe nature and the mystery of creation. Although he shared his love of sailing with many, he was content to spend hours on his own, just to listen, to hear his own heart and to move soulfully with it. Self-taught in all aspects of his life, he generally took the solitary path of study. There he could go deep. He was intellectually curious, a keen observer of the human condition and his self-quest for learning sparked the creative tension that stirred within him. Make no mistake. He was driven. From his depth of study, he then shared his findings with the world, creating courses and curriculums in the Humanities, Human Relations, Collaborative Education and so on. He lived life artfully, with intention, with personal authenticity. Because he was receptive to discovery each day, life to him was truly exciting. "Life's pearls" he would call them. A man of great ideas, his great wisdom was to listen. Relationships were the core of his being and he cherished and remained close to lifelong friends and embraced new. When through with the big ideas of his career, Jim lived life fully, continuing his love of carpentry, sailing, reading, sculpting, traveling and enjoying time with family. Jim's life was his message. Even in illness, he was our "Courageous Teacher." His good fortune was that his final year was in the company of family and friends. Last days joyously spent snuggling in bed with family, eating cookies, singing favorite songs with his children and grandchildren. And on his final morning, savoring a cup of coffee on an outing with family. Jim graduated from Dana College in 1958 and later received his PhD in 1977 from the Fielding Institute in Santa Barbara, California. Jim was a nationally recognized specialist in Human Relations and Collaborative Education. He began his innovative work of creating and implementing a group process model for Human Relations which began early in his career as a teacher/counselor at Algona High School. His work culminated into the book, "Courageous Teaching-Creating a Caring Community in the Classroom, published in 1995. He served as mentor to hundreds of educators and facilitated seminars on many college campuses in over 20 states. Jim worked in a variety of disciplines, including business, counseling, education and health. In addition, he served as facilitator for the Education Commission of States, the National Conference of State Legislatures, the National School Board Association, the Danforth Foundation and the Texas School Board Association. He held positions of leadership and distinction in Counseling and Education professions. He served as President and Executive Director of the Iowa Association of Counseling and Development. He was named, "National School Counselor of the Year" by the American School Counselor Association and Dana College recognized him with "The Distinguished Alumni Award." The Des Moines Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa presented him with Educator of the Year Award." Jim served as Coordinator of the Humanities Program at the Heartland Education Agency and in his work at Heartland, over 20,000 teachers had taken his Human Relations and Collaborative Education Courses James L. Andersen, son of Andrew and Nina Andersen was born Dec 7, 1935 in Portland, Oregon. He died October 14, 2016. He will be deeply mourned and lovingly remembered by his wife, Beth Andersen; his children, Kathleen Andersen (Pat Whitfield) of Laguna Beach, CA, Becky Henke of Laguna Beach, CA, and John Andersen (Ellen) of Tai Pei, Taiwan; his grandchildren, Matthew Matsuyama, Lars Henke, Kirsten Henke and Karac Andersen; his brother, Andrew Andersen (Susan) of Elijay, Georgia; and Ann Andersen, the mother of Jim's adult children. Services will be held at Hamilton's on Westown Parkway, 3601 Westown Parkway in West Des Moines, IA with visitation on Thursday, October 20 from 5 to 8 p.m. and the funeral service on Friday, October 21 at 12:00 p.m. Condolences may be expressed online at www.HamiltonsFuneralHome.com .
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