After leading Johnson County Community College for five years, President Terry Calaway today announced his retirement, effective August 1, 2013.
Calaway, who became the fourth president of the community college during the summer of 2007, said he was leaving JCCC to spend more time with his family.
“I leave the college with much admiration for our team and board. I am indebted to everyone in our community for their kindness and support,” Calaway said in a statement.
During his tenure, Calaway focused the college around students and their success while also improving retention, reducing spending and increasing the school’s foundation endowment and scholarship funds.
Contributions to the JCCC Foundation for student scholarships have grown from $500,000 a year to more than $900,000. And this year the foundation’s total assets reached a record high of more than $26 million.
“Even in these troubled economic times, we’ve been able to grow the foundation endowment and support more students,” Steve Wilkinson, president and CEO of Menorah Hospital and JCCC Foundation president, said in a statement.
Calaway said that recently the college’s bond rating has been “reaffirmed at the highest level possible, and we have maintained or reduced our mill levy each year that I have served.” The current mill levy is 8.776.
Over the years, Calaway has seen enrollment at JCCC grow by 8 percent. He has been instrumental in developing agreements with the state’s four-year schools to allow at least 55 credit hours of general education courses to transfer to the state’s public colleges and universities.
In the last five years, the JCCC campus has expanded with the opening of the Regnier Center and the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art. Space was added to the Science Building and the student center. A new Hospitality and Culinary Academy is currently under construction. And last year the college’s Olathe Health Education Center was built adjacent to the Olathe Medical Center.
In 2008, Calaway led the college toward becoming more environmentally friendly, including adding the study of sustainability to course work. An on-campus farm supplies food for the school’s culinary program. Produce grown there also is sold to the community. Energy efficiency measures established across campus have saved the college more than $700,000, JCCC said.
Bob Marcusse, president and CEO of the Kansas City Area Development Council, said Calaway’s announcement came as a “complete surprise.” He called Calaway a friend not only to the council but also to regional job creation.
“He truly understands the role that JCCC plays in regional economic development, and as a region…we have benefited from his leadership,” Marcusse said.
Melody Rayl, chair of JCCC’s board of trustees, praised the job Calaway has done at the college.
“Dr. Calaway has been a tremendous leader for JCCC,” she said. “His emphasis on student support and success, his encouragement of new ideas and innovation, and his stewardship of college resources have given the college both a vision for the 21st century and a solid foundation on which we can build. We’re grateful for the time he was here, and we’ll miss him.”