By Danielle Sweetser

Katherine “Kathy” D. Pelham, an accomplished not-for-profit change leader, joined Debra H. Thatcher, PH.D., Acting President of SUNY Cobleskill, for the spring 2015 President’s Roundtable Breakfast on Thursday, March 12, 2015 in Upper Champlin Hall. Kathy, an experienced authority in moving organizations from vision to tangible results, spoke to an invitation-only audience of representatives of local government, business community and members of the College about the ways to build an engaged community.

“Cultivating an engaged community is about the culture we want, not the culture we have,” said Kathy Pelham. “It’s about each of us accepting and actively engaging in that responsibility.”

Speaking to the strength of the Schoharie County area, Kathy remarked, “When I think about this region a congratulations is in order. You have accomplished some extraordinary things in the face of calamity that could have brought many others down. The intensity of response, recovery and the long-term emphasis on rebuilding speaks to your tenacity, determination and your ability to successfully collaborate with each other.”

Upholding a successful track record that spans 30 years of community building, resource development, donor cultivation, communications and financial management skills, Kathy has been credited by leaders of for-profit and not-for-profit organizations with helping develop capacity and increase revenue and assets. Kathy served 18 years as Chief Executive Officer for the regional United Way before launching her own consulting firm, KPelham Associates, in 2012.

“A mark of a vital community is the engagement of its citizens. This engagement comes in many forms, one of the most important is out of service and volunteerism. At SUNY Cobleskill we embrace the notion of volunteerism and engaged citizenship, and we appreciate that Kathy took the time to address us,” said Debra Thatcher.