MCC chancellor, campus president to be honored as 2019 Black Achievers

Metropolitan Community College Chancellor Dr. Kimberly Beatty and campus president Dr. Tyjaun Lee have been selected to join the Black Achievers Society of Greater Kansas City.

Fifteen new inductees will be honored at a dinner Thursday, Jan. 17, at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. The Black Achievers Class of 2019 includes representatives of Hallmark, Sprint, Blue KC and Children’s Mercy Hospital, among other local businesses and organizations.

The group, founded by U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver in 1974 (five years before the former Kansas City mayor was first elected to the City Council), honors local African-American leaders in business and industry. The society has inducted more than 450 members over the last four decades.

More about MCC’s 2019 honorees:

Chancellor Kimberly Beatty

Dr.  Beatty began her tenure as Metropolitan Community College’s eighth chancellor on July 1, 2017. She is the first African-American leader in the College’s 104-year history. A champion of access and equity, she is devoted to the community college mission of providing access to higher education for all.

Dr. Kimberly Beatty

She is also committed to workforce education, including establishing new partnerships with Kansas City area businesses. She is a member of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and its Executive Women’s Leadership Council; the Kansas City Area Development Council; the Full Employment Council Board; and the Rotary Club of Kansas City.

Dr. Beatty has served on a number of boards at the state and national levels. She was appointed to a two-year term on the American Association of Community Colleges’ Commission on College Readiness in July 2018.

A three-time graduate of Morgan State University in Baltimore, Dr. Beatty received a B.A. in English, an M.A. in English, and an Ed.D. in higher education, with a specialization in community college leadership.

Dr. Beatty came to MCC from Houston Community College, where she served as vice chancellor for instructional services and chief academic officer.

President Tyjaun A. Lee

Dr. Lee is president of MCC’s Penn Valley and Maple Woods campuses, including the Health Science Institute. She joined the College in August 2017.

Dr. Tyjaun Lee

Dr. Lee is on the board of directors of the Urban Ranger Corps, which provides young men in the core of Kansas City with positive role models, tutors and life skills. She also serves on the Broadway Westport Council, which oversees community development projects. She has served as past president of the National Council on Student Development and is a member of the American Association of Community Colleges’ Pathways Commission and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.

Prior to her arrival in Kansas City, she was active in several community programs geared toward underrepresented young men and women, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, the Homeless Youth Work Group, and the state and local Action Advisory Group for the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.

Dr. Lee, a Cleveland native, attended Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. She holds a bachelor’s degree in specialized studies; a master’s in education; and a Ph.D. in educational leadership with an emphasis in higher education administration.

She came to MCC from Prince George’s Community College in Maryland, where she was vice president for student services.

Black Achievers alumni at MCC

Black Achievers are nominated by their employers. Previous inductees from MCC:

  • Chris Kelly, supplier diversity program coordinator, 2005 (before she came to MCC)
  • Joe Seabrooks, then MCC-Penn Valley president, 2010
  • Kirk Nooks, then MCC-Longview president, 2014
  • Tarana Chapple and Karen Curls at MCC-Penn Valley, and Crystal Johnson at MCC-Maple Woods, 2016
  • Victorie Edwards at MCC-Blue River and Lyle Gibson, Gieselle Taylor and Terrell Tigner at MCC-Penn Valley, 2017
  • Jackie Gill, president of the MCC-Business & Technology and MCC-Blue River campuses, Ayanna Bridges at MCC-Maple Woods, and Christal Waters at MCC-Blue River, 2018

The mission of the Black Achievers Society is “to actively respond to the educational, social and economic needs of the community by providing role models for blacks and minority youth, and sharing knowledge gained through academic and corporate experience.” The society also awards college scholarships to Kansas City students.