Distinguished Retiree Winners

Putnam Receives JSCC’s 2022 Distinguished Retiree Award


Jefferson State President Keith Brown, right, presented Patricia Putnam with the 2022 Distinguished Retiree Award.

Patricia Putnam was honored with Jefferson State’s 2022 Distinguished Retiree Award during the annual Retiree Luncheon event on Wednesday, Nov. 2.

During her 35 years at the college, Putnam served in the following positions:

1980-1985 – Admissions Counselor in the Office of Student recruiting

1985-1989 – Director of Testing

1989-1995 – Articulation Coordinator

1995-2000 – Director of Admission and Records

2000-2014 – Director of Articulation

In the 1980s, Jefferson State offered a Master Gardener program on-site at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. One of the first times Putnam was at the Gardens to register students, she decided to put becoming a Master Gardener on her “bucket list.” In 2018, Putnam completed the Master Gardener program. Today, she volunteers with the Botanical Gardens and used her gardening knowledge to create a beautiful outdoor dinner setting around her home that many fellow retirees have enjoyed.

Putnam has hosted reunions for friends from her elementary school in Florence. She also hosts annual Christmas and spring luncheons for a group of more than 20 Jefferson State retirees.

Putnam is an active member of Deerfoot Church of Christ. She often hosts dinners for various groups from her church, including new members. She has also taught Bible classes for kindergarteners through second graders.

Putnam and her husband Steve enjoy planning trips and have traveled to Hawaii, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, London, and Ireland and cruised to Canada and New England.

In spring 2015, Putnam audited a photography class at Jefferson State and has used this knowledge to create photograph and written travel diaries of her trips. One of her photographs won First Place in the Retiree Division during JSCC’s International Week of Photographs, and her photos have been featured several years in Wingspan, a literary magazine published by Jefferson State’s English Department.


2022 Distinguished Retiree Patricia Putnam, second from left, is pictured with previous award winners Carol Davenport, Tom Henderson, and Ann Fulmer.

In 2018, Putnam returned as part-time Enrollment Services Administrative Specialist/Liaison at Jefferson State, and according to one of her nominators, does a fantastic job helping our students reach their goals and obtain degrees.

Another one of her nominators said, “Trish will need to live to be 125 years old to do all the things she wants to do in retirement – but she is off to a good start!”

Each year, Jefferson State seeks nominations to honor a distinguished retiree. Anyone who retired from Jefferson State can be nominated, and they are evaluated based on their post-retirement accomplishments or contributions in the following areas:

  • Health, physical, cultural, or social well-being of the community (local, state or national)
  • Education at any level
  • Enrichment of the lives of those in his/her community
  • Other contributions or accomplishments not included above

Nominations for the 2023 recipient will open in January 2023.