MCC honors former Baylor first lady

Published: Apr. 22, 2021 at 12:49 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The Alice M. Starr Plaza was officially unveiled and dedicated on the McLennan Community College campus this week near the college’s administration building.

“My husband Ken Starr and I have loved helping MCC and Baylor students with scholarships over the years,” Starr said.

“Little did I know that as a surprise to me, President Johnette McKown and executive director of the MCC Foundation, Kim Patterson, recommended to the MCC Board that the campus plaza be named for me. I am truly honored and humbled by this recognition.”

Starr, the wife of former Baylor University President Judge Ken Starr, has an impressive and long resume as a community volunteer and successful businesswoman.

In 2005, she formed Starr Strategies to help nonprofit organizations and start-up companies strategize on public relations, marketing, and fundraising goals.

Since coming to Waco in 2010, Starr has spearheaded fundraising for many local nonprofits, including Talitha Koum Institute in Waco.

Early on, the Starrs took on active roles at MCC, providing scholarships for students and helping Presidential Scholars get a behind-the-scenes look at the nation’s capital where the Starrs remain well connected.

In 2017, the Starrs brought U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to the MCC campus to speak.

“The Starrs have both been generous with their time and resources to fund presidential scholarships and also be extraordinary hosts for the presidential scholars when they’ve been on their study tours to Washington, D.C.,” Patterson said.

“There, they got to meet Supreme Court justices and have an insider’s tour of Mount Vernon where Alice served on the advisory board.”

The dedication ceremony was hosted by the MCC Foundation and started with a performance by the MCC Bosque Singers, followed by presentations from McLennan Presidential Scholars, college administrators, and the Starr family.

The ceremony ended as the new signage for the plaza was unveiled.

“The college wanted to do something to recognize Alice Starr’s endearing work with so many community organizations,” Patterson said.

And Starr said the location couldn’t be more perfect.

“During COVID lockdown, Ken and I walked the MCC campus almost every day for exercise,” she said.

“The plaza was always our favorite spot to take a rest.”

MCC officials say they’re honored to have the name of such a deserving woman greet the Starrs on a walk, current students and visitors and those that will come to campus for generations to come.

“We are so excited to have her name permanently on our campus here at MCC,” Patterson said.

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