James Allen, Class of 1969

Posted Apr 29, 2021

Allen James Obit Pic2

James Allen ‘69 died April 17, 2021. A graduate of Otterbein and Ohio State, James began his career in 1969 at Upper Arlington High School. While at Otterbein James was involved in the Pi Kappa Phi (Country Club) fraternity and History club. After retiring in 1999, James taught part-time at Wellington for ten years.

James worked tirelessly at both schools to improve teaching and learning. In addition to working at UA as a Language Arts teacher, he served as Department Chair and K-12 Teacher Leader. During his tenure at UA and Wellington, James was both innovative and influential. He was responsible for reducing class-sizes and Initiating student-centered labs. He encouraged writing across the curriculum and implemented diverse courses with more composition and contemporary literature. He was a pioneer who encouraged integrated classes, collaborative teaching, common assessments, and grade-level standards. As a national consultant, James led workshops, spoke to large audiences at conferences, and published numerous articles. His work garnered multiple honors, including UAHS Teacher of the Year, District Teacher of the Year, UA Educators’ Hall of Fame, the Golden Apple, and the Ashland Oil Teacher Achievement Award.

James will be remembered for his love of the arts and his passion for the Buckeyes. He will also be remembered as a master gardener, gracious host, and fine cook. His parties—like his classes—were never dull! Preceded in death by his parents, James is survived by his dog, Kai and thousands of teachers and students, many of whom he inspired to write and teach.