SIDNEY — Many accolades rolled in with the nomination of Ardiss Willman Luce (SHS 1967) to the Sidney City Schools Hall of Honor. One of the strongest came from former Russia principal Doug Barhorst who called her his best hire for that Shelby County school district.
“She made art relevant in Russia,” he recalled recently.
Luce will join three other Sidney High grads as they comprise the Hall’s 25th induction class on Friday, April 20, when a 7 p.m. ceremony in the SHS auditorium will precede a gymnasium reception with both events fully open to the public. Luce, Raeburn E. Barnes (SHS 1892), Richard R. Rediske (SHS 1970), and Mike Herbert (SHS/JVS 1985) will bring hall membership to 127.
An accomplished third generation artist who spent over 20 years teaching at Sidney High School, “Ardiss the Artist” inspired many to become artists and/or teachers of art. However, multiple nomination testimonials painted a broader and more significant picture of her true impact. Luce was able to convey an appreciation of art to those who did not pursue art professionally. She was seen as influential in this regard within her classroom and in the buildings and communities where she worked.
Conversely, her own art inspirations included her mother, grandmother and SHS teaching legend Richard Cromer (HoH 2003).
Luce was also a full participant in the total school enterprise, especially where an artistic touch would enhance the situation. She held long-term advisory roles with activities like the prom and Muse Machine. When she retired, those functions missed her talent, energy, and longevity. The Charity League and its Red Glove Revue were among her civic endeavors.
She operated an art gallery for two decades and remains active in the art world as she and her husband travel through retirement from a Sidney base of operations. You can catch up to her through the website Ardiss.org. A cancer survivor and ongoing visible advocate, Luce and husband, Judge Donald Luce, have three adult children.
Luce is the fifth member of the 1967 graduating class to join the Hall also including William M. Dodd, Chuck Price, Douglas Stewart and Kathy Lindsey.