James Leslie Putnam, 1918
Ph.B., Denison University
M.A., Columbia University
Citation awarded on Saturday, June 7, 1958
Through his unceasing efforts to give aid to untold numbers of his fellow human beings, James Putnam’s contributions as a distinguished YMCA secretary has greatly bettered international relationships.
For 39 years Mr. Putnam has provided leadership at the “Y”, and since 1950 he has served as general secretary of the Jerusalem YMCA. An international center for refugee relief and a Christian center for inter-faith membership, Mr. Putnam’s “Y” enables Jews and Arabs to meet on friendly terms in a strife-torn land. There, his “Y” workers were the first to set up a trade and elementary school for refugee children and more than a quarter of a million people visit his “Y” annually. Other overseas assignments he has held include the Armed Services “Y” in Tsingtao, China, and the Central Mediterranean area, as well as the educational secretaryship in Honolulu, Hawaii.