Record-Breaking Success at Labette Community College's 25th Annual Auction for Scholarships

April 17, 2024

Photo Release: Kenneth Ervin, the oldest known living LCC graduate, captivates the audience with a story from his time on the men’s basketball team. He told about a particular game when he came off the bench and scored the game-winning basket to beat Coffeyville Community College. He said that the coach moved him to the starting lineup after that.

Parsons, KS – [April 17, 2024] – The Labette Community College (LCC) Foundation and Alumni Association announces historic success at the 25th Annual Auction for Scholarships held on April 6, 2024, at the Parsons VFW. The event saw unprecedented community support, with more tickets sold than ever before and record-breaking total proceeds of $72,878, far exceeding this year’s goal of $50,000 and surpassing last year’s total of $48,556. Thus, highlighting the community’s commitment to supporting the college. Funds raised at this event are earmarked for student scholarships in the upcoming academic year. 

This year’s auction, themed "LCC through the Eras," aligned with LCC’s yearlong centennial celebration. The event not only honored the past but also helped lay a strong foundation for the future. McCarty Office Machines Inc., this year's event sponsor, played a significant role in the event’s success. The evening featured a delicious meal, which was donated and prepared by Labette Health, along with live and silent auctions.  

A major highlight of the evening was Ken Ervin, the oldest known living LCC graduate from the class of 1947 and a cherished member of the Parsons community, captivating attendees with a story from his time at the college. Dressed in a cardinal red shirt embroidered with the LCC logo, Ervin reminisced about his days on the men’s basketball team, notably his winning shot against Coffeyville Community College. Ervin’s entertaining story underscored the enduring bond between the college and its alumni.  

In support of a unique fundraising activity and also providing a beautiful focal point for the decorations, local carpenter and LCC maintenance specialist Taylor Shepard, designed and constructed a six-foot tall three-layer wooden birthday cake structure adorned with red glittering battery operated candles. For a $100 donation, each candle could be illuminated. There were 100 candles representing LCC’s 100-year history. Everyone who donated to light a candle was entered in a cash prize drawing. At the end of the evening, Tracie Moon’s name was drawn as the lucky winner of the $1,000 prize.  

To recognize the college’s centennial, LCC welding students built a custom metal bench featuring the 100-year anniversary logo, which became the centerpiece of a highly anticipated raffle. Tickets were sold at each centennial event throughout the year, with additional opportunities to purchase on the night of the auction. The raffle concluded with Cathy Kibler winning the much-coveted bench, highlighting both the talent of LCC's students and the community's enthusiastic participation in the anniversary festivities.  

Lindi Forbes, Executive Director of the LCC Foundation and Alumni Association, expressed her gratitude for the outstanding community support by saying, "We are profoundly thankful for the generosity and commitment shown by everyone involved. This remarkable achievement will allow us to offer scholarships to 50 additional students, helping them achieve their educational dreams, while lessening some of the financial burden." She added that the event's success was a true team effort, highlighting the many people who made the event possible. Forbes noted that such collaborative efforts strengthen the community and enhance educational opportunities for future students. 

An online auction held from April 7th to April 14th further contributed to the success, engaging community members who could not attend in person but still wished to support LCC students. The virtual auction segment was particularly spirited, adding to the record-breaking amount of funds raised.  

Dr. Mark Watkins, President of LCC, is also grateful for the support demonstrated by the success of the auction. "We are thrilled by the incredible turnout and generosity displayed at this year's scholarship auction," said Watkins.  

A majority of auction guests were LCC alumni, which highlights the lasting influence LCC has had on both individual lives and the broader community. LCC alumni are leaders in local government, area school districts, manufacturing firms, healthcare facilities and more. “Thousands of former students are employed in the LCC Service Area,” said Watkins. Over the years, students have studied at LCC and entered or re-entered the workforce with newly-acquired knowledge and skills. According to Lightcast, a labor market analytics firm, the net impact of LCC’s former students currently employed in the regional workforce amounted to $118.2 million in added income in FY 2021-22. “We are proud to provide a skilled workforce to the Labette County region. Those alumni contribute to their communities not just by adding to the local economy, but also by serving communities in multiple other ways.”

Those interested in supporting LCC Foundation scholarships or wishing to learn more about upcoming events and initiatives can contact Lindi Forbes at 620-820-1212 or via email at  

Photo Release: L_R: LCC Wrestling Team members and coaches donated an autographed banner from their district championship finish earlier this year. Auctioneers Cody Ross and Sam Elmore worked the crowd in an effort to get the highest bid. Gary and Kim Beachner won out and generously donated the banner back to the team so it can be hung in the wrestling training room to inspire future teams.

PR Contacts

Lindi Forbes

Interim Director of Public Relations
(620) 820-1212