SUNY Corning Community College, elected officials, and members of the community celebrated the impact and positive contributions Dr. Katherine P. Douglas has had on the college and community at a Retirement Celebration held May 31, 2019. Amidst congressional proclamations, shared memories, best wishes, a ribbon cutting, and a champagne toast, faculty, staff, and members of the community reflected on Douglas’ legacy.
Today’s ceremony began with the renaming of the College’s Diversity Center. With an official ribbon-cutting, it is now the Dr. Katherine P. Douglas Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. This is one of many ribbons Douglas has cut during her 8-year tenure at SUNY CCC. Among others, she cut the ribbon on the College’s first residence hall, the Welding Center, the Health Education Center, and the STEAM Innovation Center. Committed to the importance of strategic planning, she led the creation of two strategic plans that have revitalized virtually every area of the College. She oversaw a $20 million capital investment on the Spencer Hill campus that re-imagined the Arthur A. Houghton, Jr. Library, established the Learning Commons, launched the Educational Planning Center, and reignited the athletic program with renewed facilities and the first-ever turf field. More recently, she built public/private partnerships that have and will modernize the campus’ footprint. The first is with Riedman-Purcell and has resulted in the technology-rich, 22,000 square foot Health Education Center, which supports the City of Corning’s revitalization efforts. The second is with Siemens and is destined to make the College’s Spencer Hill campus more energy efficient and prepare professionals for leadership roles in new and emerging areas of technology, design, and science. The third is with Barnes & Noble, bringing affordability and 21st century service to students and faculty alike. Kate led the establishment of the welding program in Elmira’s Academic and Workforce Development Center, encouraged the establishment of several new academic programs to meet regional workforce needs, facilitated the creation of the Southern Tier STEM Academy, and collaborated with the College’s Development Foundation to establish the Presidential Scholars program.