History of the Kentucky Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges

In the early 1970’s, mathematics faculty from two-year colleges across the state met annually at the Kentucky Association of Junior Colleges Conference. Mathematics faculty members felt the need for more time as they found the brief meetings very helpful. Since they had the largest discipline meeting at KAJC, they decided to investigate the feasibility of starting a new organization. Jacqueline Moss, Trudy Cunningham, and Sarah Pendry attended a national meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) and discussed two-year college organizations with participants from other states there. Martin Brown attended the national Mathematics at Two-Year Colleges (MATYC) conference at Nassau Community College in New York and was also instrumental in forming the new organization.


On November 2, 1973, at the KACJS Conference, a group of mathematics instructors from across the state met at Eastern Kentucky University to form the Kentucky Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (KYMATYC). Attending were Catherine Williams of Paducah Community College; Don Brashear of Lees Junior College; Dan Norman of Southeastern Christian College, George Livingston of Ashland Community College; Martin Brown of Jefferson Community College; Sister Ann Frederick of St. Catharine Junior College; Susan Fredine of St. Catharine Junior College; Mary Catherine Brown of Hazard Community College; Trudy Cunningham of Midway College; Ed Curtis of Maysville Community College; and Jacqueline Moss of Paducah Community College.

The following officers were selected at the organizational meeting:


President: Jacqueline Moss

President-elect:  Martin Brown

          Secretary-Treasurer:           Trudy Cunningham

          Member-at-large:                           George Livingston

          Member-at-large:                           Ed Curtis

Objectives of KYMATYC as stated in the original constitution were as follows:

1.    1.       To establish and maintain consistency in course content and placement;

2.   2.     To share opinions of particular library holdings and systems of grading;

3.   3.     To report the success and/or failure of innovations;

4.   4.     To expose the members to new material through "hands-on" workshops;

5.   5.     To exchange information about available positions and applicants;

6.   6.     To become acquainted with teachers of mathematics in all two-year colleges in Kentucky; and

7.   7.     To establish and maintain articulation with four-year colleges.

KYMATYC held its first annual meeting in conjunction with the MAA-Kentucky Section in March 1974. Beginning in 1975, the organization began meeting separately at Shakertown in early March. The organization became a sounding board for issues of interest to faculty from two-year colleges and four-year colleges in the state.

Faculty from four-year institutions have contributed greatly to KYMATYC. Carroll Wells of WKU developed summer graduate courses in mathematics for our members. The yearly courses were often supported by Summer Teaching Improvement Fellowships from UKCCS. These provided a means for faculty to improve their credentials as well as another opportunity to discuss issues with one another. Brauch Fugate, Cliff Swauger, and Chris Vancil kept KYMATYC informed about course and curriculum issues at UK. Ben Lane, Jo Lane and Amy King kept KYMATYC informed on teacher education and curriculum issues at EKU. Wanda Weidemann and Mary Barr Humphries of WKU worked with our members to offer NSF and Exxon Foundation funded workshops to improve the teaching of mathematics for elementary teachers. Paul Eakin and Ken Kubota of UKMS worked with members to provide training for faculty and support for NKATE computer labs. Rodger Hammons of MSU and Dan Curtin of NKU served as four-year college partners for the NSF Portable CAS grant project. Chris Christensen and Dan Curtin hosted the NSF Calculus Institute and CAS-CALC Short Course at NKU.

Dr. Stanley Wall, then Dean of the Community College System, was a big supporter of KYMATYC in the early years. He attended the Friday Keynote Speech and dinner during the first years the group met at Shakertown. Dr. Wall promised financial support if the organization found itself unable to meet its financial obligations. However, the meetings were well attended and the organization was self-supporting from the beginning. George Livingston, one of the founding members, was the social leader in the early years. He took personal responsibility for the AfterMath social hour on Friday night. Sister Ann Frederick Leonard, another founding member, was instrumental in ensuring that KYMATYC addressed the needs of private as well as public two-year colleges. She served two terms as secretary/treasurer of the organization.

One of the early projects of KYMATYC was a state-wide mathematics contest for two-year college math students. Catherine Williams, Don Brashear, and Mary Catherine Brown developed the first such contest. Fred Watkins of Hazard Community College and Sandy Spears of Jefferson Community College wrote questions for the annual math contest from 1977 until 1981. The contest continued for eleven years with Masao Miyashita receiving the highest score for 1984.

In 1986, KYMATYC became an American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges (AMATYC) affiliate, and Sandy Spears was elected the first affiliate delegate to the AMATYC Delegate Assembly. KYMATYC has since had a strong relationship with AMATYC. Sandy Spears and Kathy Mowers have served as Regional Vice-Presidents. Darrell H. Abney served on the AMATYC Standards Committee and also was a Co-PI on the AMATYC Standards Workshop Project.

In the 1990’s, the organization has encouraged presentations on the appropriate use of technology and alternate teaching methods. Members and guests made presentations on the use of computer algebra systems and graphing calculators in the teaching of mathematics. New efforts like the Math Excel program at UK and the NKATE Project were showcased at meetings. KYMATYC took a leadership role in addressing curriculum issues such as the development of the alternative Intermediate Algebra course for community colleges and changes in the mathematics curriculum for prospective elementary teachers. Lillie Crowley and Darrell H. Abney led the NKATE effort to get all of the community colleges connected to the Internet. KYMATYC information became available on the web in 1995 thanks to Kathy Mowers, who established our web page. In 1996, Rebecca Isaac-Fahey developed an email list. This allowed members to communicate electronically with each other. Several members are experimenting with offering courses on the net. That will be a hot topic for programs in the next few years.

As we approach our 25th annual meeting, KYMATYC is recognized as a leader among the educational organizations in Kentucky. Members of our organization are leaders in KCTCM, MAA-KY, and KADE as well as leaders at their colleges. We are indebted to the brave eleven who had a vision of the power of two-year college mathematics faculty and met at EKU in 1973.

Revised March 3, 1999

Darrell H. Abney, Historian

Featured Speakers throughout the Years

1976           Alan Shorb, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Understanding Change – Implications for Mathematics Teaching


1979           Conley Powell, University of Tennessee Space Institute, Mathematics of Interstellar Flight


1980           Austin French, Georgetown College, Students Can Be Taught to Do Proofs: The Idea in Theory and the Idea Put                into Practice


1981            Michael Jacobson, University of Louisville, Instant Insanity: A Sane Approach


1987           Franklin Demana, Ohio State University, School-College Interface


1988           David Roselle, University of Kentucky, Building a Campus Computational Environment


1989           Jerry King, Lehigh University, The Magical Art of Mathematics


1991            Elizabeth Teles, National Science Foundation, Writing a Successful Grant Proposal


1992           Philip Crooke, Vanderbilt University, Using a Symbolic Algebra System in Teaching Calculus and other Basic Courses

1993           Nancy Zumoff, Kennesaw State College, Earth Algebra: College Algebra with Applications to Environmental Issues

1994           Kathleen Heid, Penn State University, Curriculum Issues & Collaborative Learning

1995                              Ruth Casey, Franklin County Schools, CBL and 82: Tools for Today


1995                            Lucy Davis, Kentucky State Police Laboratory, Forensic DNA Analysis

1995           Bill Thomas, University of Toledo, Implementing the AMATYC Standards

1996           Ron Crouch, Director, State Data Center, New Rules for a New Demographic Ballgame

1997           Frank Morgan, Williams College, The Soap Bubble Geometry Contest

1998                            Daniel Curtin, Northern Kentucky University, Solving the Cubic Equation: A Story of Renaissance Genius and                         Renaissance Spleen


2006          John Martin, Santa Rosa (CA) Junior College, The Cycloid: Helen of Geometry


2007          Gary K. Rockswold, Minnesota State University, Mankato, Just How Much Power Does Math Have?


2008          Tom Carson, Columbia State Community College, Who are We Now?


2009          Dan Kennedy, Baylor School, Chattanooga, Tennessee, My Year with Num3ers: Mathematics Goes to Hollywood



Past Presidents

1973-1974           Jacqueline Moss            Paducah CC

1974-1976           Martin Brown

1976-1978           Ed Curtis

1978-1980           Hugh Duguid                  Hopkinsville CC

1980-1982           Joe Jeffries                 Somerset CC

1982-1984           Powell Livesay

1984-1986           Bill Parker 

1986-1988           Linda Mayhew                Elizabethtown CC

1988-1990           Carrie Parker               

1990-1991           Lillie Crowley                 Lexington CC

1991-1994           Darrell H. Abney          Maysville CC

1994-1996           Kathy Mowers               Owensboro CC

1996-1998           Brita Dockstader          Jefferson CC-Downtown

1998-2000          Dana T. Calland             Maysville CC

2000-2002                    Joseph Mahoney           Paducah CC

2002-2003                    Barbara Lott                 Maysville CC (moved to Florida midterm)

2003-2006                    Gerald Johnson             Jefferson CC-DT

2006-2008                    Gail Stringer                 Somerset Community College

2008-2010           Jason Taylor                 West Kentucky Community and Technical College

2010-2012                    Virginia Metcalf            Somerset Community College

2012-present      Don Barnes          Hazard Community and Technical College


Last updated: March 4, 2013