Assistant Professor of English, Emerita
The years since my retirement from WKU have been very busy ones. My interest in education did not end then but simply took a different focus. Although I had been a member of PEO – a philanthropic educational organization – for many years, I now had more time to participate in this women’s organization . P.E.O. focuses on the importance of women’s higher education opportunities . It provides loans, grants and scholarships through six different programs to assist deserving women and owns and maintains Cottey College a fully accredited college for women in Missouri. P.E.O. has given over $264 million in financial assistance to almost 96,000 recipients to date. After serving on the KY State Board, I was elected to the International Executive Board of P.E.O. and served as International president in 2005-2007. I am pleased to say that the P.E.O. members in KY endowed the writing center at Cottey College in my honor. In fulfilling my responsibilities as a member of the International Executive Board, I spent about a week in each of the fifty states and also visited five of the Canadian provinces. There are over 250,000 active members of P.E.O.,and visiting with many members and communicating with them through articles in our publications and website has been interesting and rewarding. In 2013 I was appointed to the presidential search committee for Cottey College and also served on a capital campaign to finance a new fine arts building on the campus of the college. The ten members of the committee were asked to raise $35 million in three years. We actually did better than expected! We raised over $42 million! So the new building opens this year – debt free as is every other building on that campus. I have also spent time writing successful grant applications to assist women with their education and the largest being a $40,000 study grant from the Eli Lilly Foundation .
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