September 24, 2018
Board Member Since 2018
When Patrick Kelly left Long Beach, Calif. to come to school at the University of Kansas, he never thought he would find his home in Lawrence. He also was unaware of the impact he would have on Lawrence in the years to come.
Kelly, who joined the Lawrence Schools Foundation Board in January of 2018, has been instrumental in educating students at all levels in the Lawrence Public Schools since leaving the Golden Coast. After graduating from KU with degrees in music education and educational leadership, Kelly has been a fixture in the district.
He taught music at West Middle School, Hillcrest Elementary and Free State High School. He served as the director of fine arts for the district and was the associate principal at Free State. His current role is Director of Career and Technical Education and the Lawrence College and Career Center.
Kelly joined the board because he was inspired by the work the Foundation and its board performs on behalf of educators and students. As the board’s co-LEAP chairman, Kelly works hard to establish connections between the community and the schools.
“I am encouraged when we are able to increase the number of volunteer hours in our schools,” he said. “That, combined with an increase in dollars donated to the Foundation, is a great indicator of the success of the Foundation.”
The Foundation’s role as a link in providing opportunities for students, teachers and others, is important to Kelly.
“Great schools are reflective of great communities and great communities are strengthened by great schools,” he said. “When we have members of the community who can come together to improve our schools, we have a stronger community.”
Kelly and his wife Amy have a daughter, Brynn, a student at Free State and a step-daughter Victoria, who is a Free State graduate. You can find Kelly performing often in the community theatre, as well as volunteering for many different organizations in Lawrence.