Member Spotlight Winter 2022

Photo of Jessica Parrish

Member Spotlight - Jessica Parrish

Where did you grow up and where is your home now?

I was born in Pikeville, Kentucky and graduated from Pikeville High School. I enjoy living in Pikeville and being a part of the vibrant, faith-based community here.

What is your connection to UK?

 I attended UK and received my bachelor’s degree in business education. I was also a member of Tri Delta sorority. My husband Lynn and I met while attending UK. Both of our children attended UK. Jess received his J.D. from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 2012 and Lynn W. received his MBA from the University of Kentucky College of Business in 2005. My husband and I are UK Fellows and enjoy traveling and rooting on the Wildcats with the K Fund.

Which funded proposals for W&P have you found particularly interesting and/or worthwhile?

Proposals that involve and benefit Appalachian communities are of particular interest to me. W&P recently accepted a proposal from the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment which funds summer internships in various communities around Kentucky. Student interns will learn about and address the challenges communities face in Appalachia and across Kentucky. We’re blessed in Pikeville to have an outstanding Cooperative Extension Office. I’ve seen first-hand how W&P awards have positively impacted the Pikeville community.

Tell us about the most interesting job you’ve had.

The most interesting job I’ve had is volunteering at First Baptist Preschool in Pikeville. I have held a variety of positions over the 30+ years I have been involved with the school. Watching students grow up, become involved in the community, and choose a career path has been incredibly rewarding.

Tell us about a fun experience at UK.

I loved my time at UK. The people I met in college and through my sorority have become lifelong friends and have supported me in trying times. Lynn and I have had numerous fun experiences through the KFund and W&P over the years. We look forward to Grand Night for Singing each summer and football and basketball games in the fall and spring. We’ve enjoyed introducing our grandchildren to our UK family and are excited to see them become a part of the UK community as they grow up.

Ruth Webb

Member Spotlight - Ruth Webb

Where did you grow up and where is your home now?

I grew up in Lexington, just a few blocks from the UK campus. Our back yard adjoined the UK track. I played there, studied at the UK library, was a “candy striper” at UK Med Center, and watched intramural sports after school most days. My husband and I now live on a farm on the Kentucky River in Salvisa, Mercer County.

What is your connection to UK?

I received both my BA and JD degrees from UK, although I attended 5 different colleges as an undergraduate! I was seeing the country, but I came back home.

Which funded proposals for W&P have you found particularly interesting and/or worthwhile?

I get pretty excited when I hear a student making a pitch for a proposal and they convince me that the project will directly benefit students. Recently an engineering student spoke to us about interdisciplinary summer research stipends for a project involving plastic waste in East Africa. She said, “Empowered women empower women.” I couldn’t agree more!

The most interesting job I've had:

As an attorney, I practiced with a firm and then as a sole practitioner for several years. Then I had an opportunity to serve as staff counsel for House leadership in the Kentucky General Assembly. I was assigned to Rep. Harry Moberly, who was chair of the Appropriations and Revenue Committee. He was wonderful to work for – he gave me latitude to research policies and legislation and we respected each other’s opinions. I was included in critical strategy sessions for the state budget, as well as the ongoing committee work and proposing legislation, particularly in education. One of our shared passions was improving teacher quality.