UK lays off Chester Grundy, long-time director of MLK Cultural Center

lblackford@herald-leader.comJune 11, 2012 

Chester and Ann Grundy received the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions to their community. The award was announced at the African American Ball in 2011.


The University of Kentucky has laid off the long-time director of the Martin Luther King Cultural Center on campus, but the center will remain open, a spokesman said.

Chester Grundy is a 1969 graduate of UK, where he helped establish the Black Student Union as a student. He has been at UK for more than 30 years, also serving as director of the Office of African American Student Affairs. He helped start the Spotlight Jazz Series at UK, which brought performers such as Wynton Marsalis to campus. Grundy co-founded the Roots & Heritage Festival and the joint UK and Lexington annual celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Grundy also worked at Kentucky State University.

Grundy did not return calls to his home on Monday.

J.J. Jackson, vice president of institutional diversity, was traveling out of the country with students and was not available for comment.

UK began laying off employees late last month and confirmed last week that 140 people would lose their jobs, mostly from administrative and staff ranks. An additional 120 jobs and 44 faculty positions will not be filled.

UK officials say the layoffs are aimed at filling a $43 million budget hole, caused in part by a $20 million cut in state funding, and a $23 million increase in fixed costs.

Linda Blackford: (859) 231-1359. Twitter: @lbblackford

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