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Summer 2005 | Volume 28, Number 2 | Features

Response Art Work

The Pumpkin Patch
From “Harvest Time at The Farm”
Response, Autumn 2003

James “Jimi” Lott
In Memory

JAMES “JIMI” LOTT, longtime photographer for Response and The Seattle Times, died July 5, 2005. The Chelan (Washington) County Coroner ruled his death a suicide. He was 52 years old.

Born in Pontiac, Michigan, and raised in San Diego, California, Lott was an award-winning and widely respected photographer whose photographs reflected the compassion and empathy he felt for his subjects. Before coming to Seattle in the early 1980s, he was a Pulitzer Prize finalist in spot-news photography for his photograph of a young boy being comforted by a firefighter after an apartment-house fire.

As a full-time photographer for The Seattle Times from 1984 to 2004, Lott won multiple awards, including the Reid Blackburn Memorial Award for outstanding achievement in feature photography over four consecutive years. He worked as a freelance photographer for Seattle Pacific University from 1985 to 2005, winning numerous awards in CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education) competitions, including for the photograph above. As he often did with his subjects, Lott struck up a friendship with the young boy and his parents, eliciting the child’s joyful expression. “Jimi had the unique ability to translate an idea into a memorable photo — all while treating his subject with the utmost respect,” remembers Dale Kegley, art director in SPU’s Office of University Communications.

Lott’s countless other photographs for Seattle Pacific featured students, faculty members, alumni, and noted guests such as George Will, William Bennett, and David Aikman. He regularly photographed Homecoming, Ivy Cutting, and Commencement events, as well as student concerts and theatre productions.

His personal generosity was renowned. “Essentially, he raised me — and in a Christian home,” recalled Lott’s grandniece, Keena LaBree, in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. “He was a very, very devoted Christian — and an awesome musician.” Lott is survived by his son, sister, stepfather, grandniece, ex-wife, and many friends at SPU, The Seattle Times, and elsewhere.

To see more photos Jimi Lott created for Response and SPU, click here.


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