The Dr. Michael Butts Endowment was established by Brenda and Scotty Holmes, his Northwest colleagues, his family, and a host of friends in appreciation for his years of dedicated service to the students attending the Oxford campus of Northwest Mississippi Community College, according to Sybil Canon, associate vice president of Development and Special Projects.
The only child of Jack and Robbie Harrison Butts, Michael was brought up in a home that placed a high value and emphasis on education. Before her death, Robbie had been an elementary school teacher for 42 years. His father, Dr. Jack Butts, is the dean of the Lafayette-Yalobusha Technical Center (LYTC) and has the distinction of working at Northwest for 50 years in addition to other years as a teacher and school principal.
A 1982 graduate of West Panola Academy, where his father was principal and his mother was his fifth grade teacher, Michael earned a Math and Science diploma. He was inducted into the National Beta Club Honor Society, was selected for membership in the Hall of Fame, and was voted Most Likely to Succeed and Senior Class Favorite.
He graduated from what was then Northwest Mississippi Junior College in 1984. He then earned a Bachelor of Arts, a Master of Arts, an Education Specialist degree, and a Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Instruction, all from the University of Mississippi.
While working on his Specialist degree, Michael taught at LYTC as an adjunct biology instructor. He began his full-time teaching career in the South Panola School District as a fifth grade teacher at Batesville Intermediate School. After only one year, he was voted grade chair for the eleven sections of the fifth grade.
He began teaching at Northwest on the Oxford campus in 1992, where he currently serves as Career-Technical Education Support Services coordinator.
His professional memberships include the Mississippi Association of Vocational Educators of Special Needs Personnel, where he served as State Treasurer, and Kappa Delta Pi, an international honor society in education. He was also named to Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers. On the Oxford campus, Michael has chaired and served on various administrative committees.
Michael enjoys traveling, gardening, and playing bridge. He has toured over 20 countries in Europe, Asia, and Africa. He is an avid rose gardener and currently maintains approximately 60 hybrid tea roses. He has held memberships in The American Rose Society as well as both contract and duplicate bridge clubs. He is currently a member of the Panola County Humane Society.
Canon enthusiastically endorses this scholarship. “Dr. Michael Butts is truly an exemplary educator and a passionate advocate for students. In addition, he is a strong supporter of the Northwest Foundation. He has spearheaded several fundraising efforts, which have resulted in the establishment of eight scholarship endowments. The campaign to endow Michael’s scholarship was a short one because his friends and colleagues contributed generously and immediately to honor him, thus, exceeding the $10,000 needed to fully endow this scholarship in only a few weeks. It is such a privilege for our foundation to have a scholarship that bears this dear and distinctive name,” Canon said.
The first scholarship will be awarded for the 2017-18 academic year to a full-time student who attends LYTC.
For more information about the Northwest Foundation, contact Canon at 662-560-1103 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.