UMKC campus

About the Trustees

The UMKC Board of Trustees is a non-profit organization established by civic and community leaders to support the University.

Trustees Mission

The UMKC Trustees represent the spectrum of Kansas City's business, civic and philanthropic leadership. Our members advocate on the University's behalf, provide community feedback and forge partnerships to help the University achieve its strategic priorities and financial objectives. The board works to ensure that UMKC is an exceptional urban university embedded in the fabric of our community and that the community is embedded in the University.


Meet a Trustees’ Scholar

Derecka Purnell

Pre-Law/ Political Science, Sociology and Black Studies

Graduation date:
Spring 2012

How has being named a Trustees' Scholar changed your life?
Being named a Trustee Scholar has changed my life by placing me next to rising, academically talented cohorts across disciplines; setting me under the guidance and sponsorship of Kansas City's eminent leaders that are investing in my education and career path; and offering me exclusive networking, goal setting, and off-campus participatory opportunities.

What has your experience been like at UMKC?
I have really enjoyed engaging in the on and off-campus cultural programs and activities. The Black Studies Program, Division of Diversity, Access, & Equity, Sue Shear Fellowship, and Multicultural Student Affairs office have all provided me with a unique perspective of what UMKC has to offer toward diversity and higher education. Because my studies are socio-interdisciplinary, my courses have challenged me to address real issues facing real people.

What would you like to say to your sponsor?
I would like to thank Lathrop & Gage, LLP very much for being sponsors of the program as well as my personal champion in my endeavors. I would encourage the board to keep investing in students of today to secure the innovative minds of tomorrow. As a competitive student that would not have ordinarily received the opportunity of higher education due to financial hardship, I now have an avenue towards success through the vision of this board.Thank you.