Former police officer, transportation coordinator brings grassroots grit to table
The Seward County Community College Board of Trustees met Monday in regular session, having interviewed candidates to fill the trustee spot vacated by Rick Brenneman. In a unanimous vote, trustees opted to appoint Stacy Johnson of Liberal to complete Brenneman’s term.
“We had some real strong candidates, and it was a tough decision,” said board chairman Ron Oliver. “We’re looking forward to working with him.”
“I feel it is vital to our community that as many students from USD 480 as possible continue their education right here at home. The classes in Industrial Technology and Allied Health train kids in the kind of professions that we need, and give them the tools to have a good career and a future in Southwest Kansas.”
— SCCC Trustee Stacy Johnson
Johnson, a former officer with the City of Liberal Police Department, is no stranger to Liberal or the world of education. A lifelong resident of Seward County, Johnson graduated from SCCC in 1990 with an associate degree in criminal justice. He served on the USD 480 Board of Education from 2006 to 2011, and combined his law enforcement experience with education as the on-call officer at Liberal High School. He currently serves as transportation supervisor for USD 480.
“The main reason I applied to the board is that I care about working with the young adults of this community,” Johnson said. “SCCC is one of the biggest assets we have in Seward County, and it’s really important that we maintain it and help it grow.”
Johnson said his own life experiences show that the college plays a key role in training and retaining professionals who can contribute to the region’s economic and social health.
“I’ve always been proud to say that I graduated from SCCC, and so did my wife,” Johnson said. “Our youngest daughter has taken classes there, and obtained her certifed nursing aide certificate in 2014 before joining the United States Navy, our oldest son just received his Emergency Medical Technician certificate from SCCC, and our oldest daughter is currently in her first year of the nursing program at SCCC.”
The college, Johnson said, “is a huge part of how our young people can be successful, and establish adult lives that lead them back to Liberal. I’m super-excited to work with the board.”
As an appointed trustee, Johnson will serve through December 2020, to complete the term for which Brenneman had been elected. Due to a change in Kansas state election schedules, the SCCC board of trustees selection moved to align with the general election.