Dedicating his life to serving the community, Donald Ray Sanders is a native of Tyler, Texas. Born and raised there, he is the son of the late Herbert Sanders, Sr. and the late Annie Mae Sanders. Donald has been currently married to Sally White Sanders for the past 46 years and has three children: Carla, Mesquite, TX and Candance and Christopher, Tyler, TX.
He graduated from Robert E. Lee High School, Tyler, TX and then attended Tyler Junior College. He additionally completed East Texas Leadership Training with the City of Tyler.
Mr. Sanders was employed with Kelly Springfield and retired after 33½ years of exemplary service.
Donald has a multitude of civic involvement service. He has served as City Councilman representing District 2 (2006 – 20012). He also served on the Audit Committee for the City of Tyler. He was Mayor Pro-Tem for the City of Tyler June 2009 – May 2010. Mr. Sanders also assisted in initiating construction of the Earl Campbell Parkway in the city of Tyler. Donald has served as a member of the Advisory Committee of the Area Agency on Aging in East Texas, in addition to serving on the Tyler 21 Parks, Open Space, and Recreation Committee which voted to approve the Tyler 21 Master Plan.
He is the former Vice President of the St. Louis Improvement Association for 9 years and former Vice President of the Tyler Smith County NAACP Branch #6232 for 39 years. Donald also served as Area Coordinator. Mr. Sanders served as election judge for Precinct 53 – Tyler ISD for 8 years and as a delegate to the Smith County Labor Council. He’s also Former First Senior Vice Commander, DAVA (Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary) Chapter 6, Woodrow Wilson Unit – Tyler, Texas.
Mr. Sanders is President of the Smith Temple Church of God in Christ (COGIC) Male Chorus. Mr. Sanders is also President of Butler College Community Service Organization.
Donald has been blessed to be recognized and awarded with many great accomplishments and achievements. In 2010: Honored as “Unsung Hero” to the Winners Circles Peer Support Group at State Recognition Banquet – Dallas, TX for sterling contributions and commitment to helping make a difference; 2010: Recognition for outstanding contribution in the field of government, “The Dream Realized”, Ebenezer AME Church, Tyler, TX; 2010: Certificate of Appreciation for Exceptional Service for Excellence: The Sons of Abraham and The Daughters of Sarah Fellowship Ministry; 2009: Citizen of the Year: Omega Psi Phi Fraternity – Sigma Omicron Chapter; 2007 & 2009: Congratulations for Services Rendered Throughout Community as a Tutor and Mentor by the Rose City Top Ladies of Distinction; 2007: Humanitarian Award for Longevity as a City of Tyler Councilman by the Usher Department of Smith Temple Church of God in Christ; 2006: Received Velma Mosley Award from Butler College Community Service Organization for Notorious Services Rendered to Others; 2004: Certificate of Appreciation from Now Faith Ministries, Bullard, TX; 2003: Appreciation for Outstanding Contributions to the Lord’s Work, Holy Men of Standard Services, Texas Northeast Jurisdiction No. II, Church of God in Christ; 2001: Served on Smith County Grand Jury; 2001, 2002, 2006: Received Torchbearers Award from Texas Conference of NAACP Branches; 1999: Award in Appreciation for Devoted and Invaluable Services Rendered to the Butler College Community; 1997: Man of the Year, Smith Temple Church of God in Christ; Served as Texas-Silver-Haired Legislator Election-Credential Chairman.