IUN executive assistant takes pride in extraordinary service
December 13, 2013 2:04PM
Kathy Lee Malone | Jeff Manes~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: January 16, 2014 6:22AM
“You have to be taught to be second class; you’re not born that way.”
— Lena Horne
Kathy Lee Malone, 57, is the executive assistant to the chancellor at Indiana University Northwest. She lives in Crown Point with husband, Dan. They have been married 29 years and have raised three children.
Born and raised in Gary?
“Yes, my father worked in the mill and also as a plumbing and heating contractor,” she said. “My father worked hard to provide for us. My mother was a stay-at-home-mom. She did sell Avon. I accredit my ability to handle responsibility to my mother. She took good care of me and my three sisters..”
“We had a great upbringing in Gary. I remember family picnics at the park at 21st and Harrison Street. We lived close and could walk to the park, before it became a ballfield.”
“I’m a proud alum of Gary Roosevelt. We were taught to excel. I’m hoping things will turn around for Roosevelt. A lot of the schools have seen decline. The situation didn’t happen overnight.”
“Calumet College of St. Joseph. I studied secretarial science because that was of interest to me. When I was at Tolleston for junior high school, I fell in gym and wasn’t able to partake in those activities. So, I’d work in the office during gym class. I liked it. I decided not to be just an ordinary clerical person, but an extraordinary one.”
How long have you worked at IUN?
“I started here in 1975. My high school shorthand and typing teacher, Doris Thompson Stewart, called to see if IUN was looking for a secretary for Barbara Cope who was Director of Special Services at the time. I got the job. In 1983, I began working for Dr. Peggy Elliott and have been in the chancellor’s office ever since.”
You’ve seen a few chancellors come and go.
“Yes, Dr. Elliott, Dr. Lloyd Rowe, Dr. Hilda Richards, Dr. Bruce Bergland and currently Dr. William Lowe.”
“I provide executive assistance and managerial support for the activities of chancellor’s office. For the past 20 years, I’ve been a member of the Chancellor’s Leadership Team and IUN Northwest Council. I manage unit budgets, expenditures and operations of IUN’s Board of Advisors. I’m also responsible for coordinating most events hosted by the chancellor’s office.”
Geesh, what do you do in your spare time?
“I’m a member of and committee co-chair of the Employee Recognition Committee, the Northwest Council Diversity Ad Hoc Committee and the One Book-One Campus-One Community campus-community read. We’re currently reading ‘House on Mango Street’ by Sandra Cisneros.”
Great writer. Anything else?
“I’m also a member of the Facilities Planning Committee, the Crisis Management Team and have served on the Scholarship Gala Committee.
“I really enjoy working here. I like the versatility of the job. It’s challenging, but exciting.”
Hobbies or pastimes?
“I enjoy bowling, but don’t have a lot of free time. I also enjoy gardening, cooking and reading short stories, periodicals and perusing the Internet.”
A couple of your specialties in the kitchen?
“Probably the most requested would be my macaroni and cheese and my banana pudding.”
“I”ve attended St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church at 23rd and Grant all my life and have served as the president and director of the church choir for the past 15 years. St. Paul will be celebrating its 98th anniversary next year. I’m also a member of Voices of Love Community Choir which is comprised of many churches. We recently opened for contemporary gospel duo Mary Mary at West Side High School. The event was sponsored in part by the Urban League of NWI.”
As stated earlier, Malone began working at the Office of the Chancellor in 1983. Since that time, she has been promoted to senior secretary (‘85), administrative secretary (‘89), administrative assistant (‘94) and executive assistant in 2002. Kathy Lee Malone was named Professional Staff Employee of the Year in 2005.