S. Henry Bundles, Jr.


Distinguished Alumni Service Award (2004)
B.A., 1948


Born in 1927, S. Henry Bundles Jr. graduated from Indiana University with a degree in journalism in 1948. He would go on to become a highly visionary and successful civic leader, businessman and entrepreneur for more than a half century.

Bundles has seen much success wherever he's ventured, and his business vision has had a huge effect on minorities as well. In 1955, he moved his family to Indianapolis and worked briefly with the Madame C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company before becoming President of Summit Industries in 1957. Under his leadership, Summit Laboratories became one of the nation's top developers and manufacturers of ethnic hair products.

Bundles was the driving force in the founding of the Center for Leadership Development, an organization dedicated to the development of minority youth in Indianapolis. Today, it prepares more than 2,000 high school students annually for success in college and beyond.

In 1999, he was inducted as a member of the Hall of Fame in the American Health and Beauty Aids Institute for his pioneering and visionary accomplishments in the industry.

Among other roles, Bundles has served as the Indianapolis 500 Festival director for several years and was a board member of the Indianapolis Convention and Visitors Bureau also.

Bundles was also a founding member of the IU Neal-Marshall Alumni Club, and he continues to be active with the group. Now retired, he continues to plan and implement training workshops and seminars to assist in minority business endeavors.

He is the namesake of the center's S. Henry Bundles Jr. Award for service to the Center for Leadership Development.
He is married to A'Lelia Mae Perry Bundles, a descendant of Madame C.J. Walker, popularly credited as the first self-made Black millionaire in the United States. Their daughter, also named A'Lelia, is a journalist by trade and, in her book On her Own Ground, told the fascinating history of their family.