Friday, December 12, 2014

Sutton to Retire from Kansas City Kansas Community College

KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- A long-time Kansas City Kansas Community College employee will be saying goodbye to the Blue Devils next week as she embarks on her path to retirement.

Linda Sutton, director of student activities, has been at KCKCC since 1984. Starting off in the business office, she was instrumental in helping the college to begin accepting credit cards and worked in most facets of the business office including cash disbursements, accounts payable and payroll.

In 1991, she became the Coordinator of Community Education, a position she served in until 1999. While in this department, she helped to create the nursing continuing education program as well as the development of the Senior Citizens Computer Lab. She also started the Driver Education program.

“I remember one of our first students (in driver’s education) was a 50-year woman who was just learning how to drive,” she said. “She was very grateful for that class.”

In 1999, she began her role as director of student activities, including overseeing the Student Senate program as well as the 20 student clubs and organizations on campus. As advisor for the Student Senate, the senate continues to be the most diverse Student Senate in the history of the college. She also coaches the Academic Excellence Challenge Team, and in 2000, she proposed remodeling the Game Room on the KCKCC campus, which added four large windows along the hallway across from the bookstore as well as a large window along the wall of the Student Senate’s workroom.

“Even after I retire, I will still be an ambassador in the community for this college,” said Sutton, who lives in the Kansas City, Kan. community. “I am grateful to have worked at KCKCC for the last 30 years.”

Sutton has an associate in business from Northwest Mississippi Community College and a bachelor of science from Friends University.

She also has a master’s of business administration from Baker University. A native of Mississippi, she has lived in the Wyandotte County area for more than 30 years. She is a member of Olivet Institutional Baptist Church and the Kansas City Kansas Women’s Chamber of Commerce. She is a marathon runner, participating in a number of marathons over the years include the New York Marathon.

After she retires, Sutton plans on volunteering as a coach for Girls on the Run of Greater Kansas City.  Girls on the Run inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident by using a fun, experience-based curriculum, which creatively integrates running.

She said she is “very excited” to facilitate training elementary and middle school girls to run a 5k race because she has wanted to be a volunteer coach for several years now but could not because it’s an after school program and with work it has not been possible.  In addition, Sutton plans on volunteering for another after school program - Young Women on the Move

Other retirement plans include spending more time taking ballroom dance classes as well as playing the saxophone again.

“Working in Student Activities was demanding and required a lot of time,” she said. “I plan to take time for myself and enjoy life.”

Sutton said she will miss coming to work every day and spending time with the students. She said some of her proudest moments were when former students come to visit, write or call to tell her “Thank you” and recognize her impact on their lives.

“I may have had disagreements with these students, but they contact me anyway,” she said. “That is how I knew that I was making a positive impact at KCKCC.”