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GCCC Endowment Association Selects New Executive Director

Jeremy J. Gigot of Garden City taking charge of college fund raising organization Monday

The Garden City Community College Endowment Association has selected a new executive director.

Jeremy J. Gigot is taking charge of the organization effective Sept. 17, in the position vacated last spring by the resignation of Melinda Harrington, who had led the association since 2008.

Gigot earned a law degree in 2001 at Pepperdine University School of Law, Malibu, CA., as well as a master of business administration at Pepperdine in 2006, with an emphasis in business, accounting and organization. He also earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science and history at Friends University, Wichita, in 1997.

He has served as office manager for Jeff Gigot Farms, Garden City, since June of 2003. In that position he has overseen financial operations, including billing, payroll, banking and accounting records. He has also developed cash flow and financial statements, as well as negotiating, reviewing and managing leases for farming property and minerals. Previously, he served in 2002-2003 as an associate with the law office of Ramon M. Escure, Telluride, CO.

He was active in Phi Delta Phi, the Christian Legal Society and the Corporate and Securities Law Exchange while at Pepperdine, and served as a volunteer with the Union Rescue Mission Legal Aid Clinic.

Between 1998 and 2000, he served as a law clerk with the Malibu Judicial District, and as a law associate with the Pepperdine University Office of Planned Giving. He also worked with the Los Angeles-based Jumpstart Coalition, aiding in development of legislative strategies for implementation of personal finance education in the California public school system.

Important Decision

Gigot’s selection was announced today by Nancy Leiker, Garden City, president of the non-profit association’s 35-member board.

“Selection of someone for this important position is something we have taken very seriously, and we are truly excited to have a talented and experienced new executive director on board,” Leiker said. “We’re looking forward to working with Jeremy in all of the endeavors of the organization.”

“I am excited to be working for the Endowment Association and I would like to thank the board of directors for providing me with the opportunity to serve my community,” Gigot said. “I would also like to thank the many donors who have given so generously of their time and money to the association.”

The association received more than 50 applications from across Kansas and other states in the central U.S. Three finalists went through a selection process that included tours of the campus and community, interviews, sessions to meet association board members and college personnel, and a dinner.

The search process was led by a committee made up of seven members of the organization’s eight-person executive board, according to Leiker.

“I look forward to nurturing our existing ties to the community and hope to forge new relationships while I work to continue the growth of the endowment,” Gigot said.

The associated, founded in 1967, is closely affiliated with GCCC. It maintains more than $5 million in assets and $350,000 in annual scholarship funds to support GCCC students. In addition to providing academic and technical scholarships, the organization offers grants to assist in academic projects at the college.

Among the association’s signature annual events are a fall scholarship development campaign, including an all-volunteer phonathon that has taken place each year since 1980, and a scholarship auction scheduled each spring.

The latest auction, which took place April 13 at the Finney County Exhibition Building for the 34th consecutive time, produced a gross total of more than $190,000. The 2012 phonathon is scheduled during the first two weeks of October, under the theme of “Branding the Future.” Last year, the phonathon and preceding direct mail campaign raised more than $80,000.

Strong Partners

Based at the GCCC Student and Community Services Center, the association employs a staff of three, including the executive director. Pam Caldwell, office manager, has served as interim executive director since Harrington resigned in May to become assistant director of financial aid for GCCC.

Previous directors have included Shea Sinclair, who served from 2001 until becoming director of the Western Kansas Community Foundation in 2008, and Sheryl Dick, who led the association prior to Sinclair’s tenure.

“I want to congratulate the GCCC Endowment Association on the selection of a new executive director, and offer Jeremy my own personal best wishes for success in this important position,” said Dr. Herbert J. Swender, GCCC president.

“The college and the association are strong partners in developing the potential of GCCC’s students as they become positive contributors to society and the economy,” Swender added. “I look forward to even greater success in the years ahead, because this partnership also plays a powerful role in creating and sustaining the future for our community and our region.”