WKCTC Recognizes Two Local Benefactors at Presidents GalaW. David and Ann Denton of Paducah and Janett Blythe of Mayfield were among 31 individuals, businesses and foundations honored by the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) during the 2014 Presidents Gala and Benefactors Awards Dinner in Lexington Saturday, November 2.
The annual gala, a black-tie affair brings together college, business and state leaders to recognize some of KCTCS colleges most loyal and committed donors. Each year, West Kentucky Community and Technical College (WKCTC) has the opportunity to recognize at least two of its outstanding donors.
We were pleased to be able to thank David and Ann Denton and our colleague Janett Blythe for their commitment to the college, said WKCTC President Barbara Veazey. Supporters like the Dentons and Ms. Blythe who not only provide generous financial support but who also give of themselves to the college help make West Kentucky one of the best colleges in the nation."
Dr. Veazey said the Dentons were recognized Saturday as longstanding college supporters of the college. Ann Denton has served on the Paducah Junior College, Inc., Board of Trustees since 1982. PJC, Inc., is the foundation for WKCTC. She currently serves as PJC Board Chair and served on the development committee that spearheaded the capital campaign that completed WKCTCs Crounse Hall.
"The Dentons appreciation for the arts was the catalyst for their funding an endowment to support WKCTCs Arts in Focus performing arts series, Dr. Veazey said. They have also given generously to various college projects including Crounse Hall, Challenger Learning Center, Emerging Technology Building and the Paducah School of Art and Design."
Blythe, WKCTCs director of marketing and public relations, established a scholarship fund for surgical technology students in memory of her brother, Donald, after he was killed by a hit and run driver in May 2000. My brothers life was turned around after he enrolled in college at West Kentucky, Blythe said Saturday. As a surgical technologist, he had something no one could ever take away from him, and he was always very proud of that accomplishment.
The Donald V. Blythe Memorial Scholarship was established not long after his death. In 2011, when the Blythes youngest sibling, Kevin, 38, died unexpectedly in California, his wife, Jennifer, asked that donations be made to the Blythe Scholarship and Kevins name was added to the fund.
I was more than a little surprised and really honored to be sharing a spotlight with remarkable individuals like David and Ann Denton, and the other benefactors recognized at the gala, said Blythe, the daughter of Henry Blythe and Nadine Blythe, both of Mayfield. When I think of benefactors worthy of that kind of recognition I think of people like the Dentons, not me. Never me.
Dr. Veazey said she was happy to recognize Blythe as one of the colleges benefactors, not only for establishing the Blythe Scholarship but also for her commitment to the college during her 21 years as director of marketing and public relations.
"Janett started the scholarship endowment in 2000 and it has grown over the years to a sizable amount," Dr. Veazey said. "I am impressed by her commitment to the memory of her brothers in a way that makes such a difference in the lives of our students."
This year's Blythe scholarship recipients, Zachary Gillum of Murray and Kelli Compton of Paducah, expressed their thanks to her during a recent WKCTC scholarship donors reception.
Last year my father was forced into an early retirement, had to have multiple surgeries and is still working with physical therapy. My family has been trying to recover financially and with Ms. Blythe's assistance I am able to help my parents in doing so and will forever be grateful for the kindness she has shown me, said 22-year-old Compton.
A 2010 Reidland High School graduate, Compton said her mother, grandmother and a cousin, all surgical technologists, inspired her to become one as well. She expects to graduate with an Associate in Science degree from WKCTC in May and is engaged to be married.
Receiving this scholarship not only helps financially but emotionally as well. It means so much knowing that there are wonderful people out there helping to aid our generations in trying to better themselves, Compton said. "Any donation, grant, or scholarship, no matter how big or small, is help that is appreciated.
To donate to the Donald and Kevin Blythe Memorial Scholarship fund or any scholarship at WKCTC, contact Becky Alcott-Haus at WKCTC, P.O. Box 7380, Paducah, KY 42002-7380.