BANDON — Jim Seeley, known for his work along the South Coast with the nonprofit Wild Rivers Coast Alliance, has died. He was 77. Seeley died Jan. 12 at his home in Bandon with his wife, Rae, by his side.
"It is with immense sadness that I share with you that Jim Seeley passed away yesterday," Marie Simonds wrote in an email from Bandon Dunes Golf Resort General Manager Don Crowe that was widely shared Monday. Simonds was recently named executive director of WRCA as Seeley stepped down.
"We have lost a great man and a great South Coast supporter," wrote Julie Miller, Oregon South Coast Regional Tourism Network manager.
"Jim had a passion for our area that led him to do great things. I remember many conversations with Jim where he shared thoughts and ideas with me about ways to improve our area," wrote Coos County Commissioner Melissa Cribbins. So many of his big plans already came true, but I’m sorry for the great ones he won’t get to see finished."
"On behalf of Keiser Golf, KemperSports, Bandon Dunes Golf Resort and the Wild Rivers Coast Alliance, I am sorry to share the loss of our colleague and friend, Jim Seeley," Crowe wrote in the email.
"A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and a decorated Vietnam veteran, Jim lived a life of service," Crowe continued.
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"It was Jim’s passion for golf, customer service and environmental advocacy that led him to the KemperSports team in 1995. He spent much of his tenure as executive vice president of operations assisting KemperSports and the Keiser family with the construction and growth of Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. It was during these years that Jim created an undeniable bond with the resort, Bandon Dunes staff and the community of Bandon.
"After retiring from KemperSports in 2011, Jim and his wife, Rae, moved to Bandon where he became the first Executive Director of the Wild Rivers Coast Alliance and an advisor for Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.
"WRCA is a grant-making department of the resort and it was a labor of love for Jim. The department seeks to fund opportunities on the South Coast of Oregon, fostering community collaboration that drives economic opportunities in a way that preserves and respects the health and integrity of the region’s natural resources and community values. Jim’s talents were an ideal match for the mission of WRCA and he soared in his role of bridging community need with leadership and grant assistance to our area.
"Jim’s dedication and commitment to WRCA, Bandon Dunes Golf Resort and the South Coast of Oregon has left an indelible mark on our community and his contributions will be recognized and appreciated for generations.
"We will miss Jim’s wit, passion, friendship and his mentorship at Bandon Dunes, and we share our sadness with all who were touched by him," Crowe said.
Services are pending under the direction of Amling-Schroeder Funeral Service, Bandon.