About Reasons to Believe

This Year’s Honorees • Nomination & Selection • Previous Years’ Honorees

The Reasons to Believe program was established in 2002 by the KCK Public Schools to generate pride and celebrate the progress being made throughout the district. There are many Reasons to Believe in the KCK Public Schools.

  • Students have Reasons to Believe by envisioning what their lives could become.
  • Parents have Reasons to Believe in the future and potential of their children.
  • Teachers have Reasons to Believe they are making a difference in the lives of students and families.
  • Community and business leaders have Reasons to Believe in a school district that is grooming the next generation of productive citizens.

The Alumni Honor Roll

As part of the program, nominations are sought for the Reasons to Believe Alumni Honor Roll which spotlights successful alumni to encourage and inspire today’s students.

  • Each year, 12 alumni are selected for inclusion in the Alumni Honor Roll and profiled as Reasons to Believe in the value of education and in the school district.
  • These alumni will serve as role models whose deeds, words and images will be shared throughout the year to encourage students, educators, parents, community leaders and business leaders.


To be considered for this honor, the individual must:

  1. Have graduated from a high school in the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools.
  2. Be successful in his or her chosen business, profession, or life work.
  3. Be a person of such integrity and stature that KCK Public Schools will take pride in his or her recognition.
  4. Have demonstrated the importance of his or her education from KCK Public Schools.

Other considerations:

  1. Nominees can and should reflect a variety of walks of life. For example, the small business owner who is active in community relations may be just as likely a candidate for the Reasons to Believe campaign as a world-class athlete.
  2. Nominees may be recognized for their leadership or participation in business, civic, faith-based, or community organizations.
  3. Nominees should reflect and celebrate the cultural diversity of the KCK Public Schools.
  4. Nominees ideally will make themselves available to participate in the Reasons to Believe campaign, including Reasons to Believe Week, tentatively scheduled in November.
  5. Nominees may be asked to speak and will need to be available for media interviews.
  6. Nominees may be asked to address students during organized assemblies.

Reasons to Believe Celebration

This special celebration brings together students, teachers, administrators, community and business leaders, lawmakers and alumni to celebrate the accomplishments of the school district. The program includes the recognition of the newest members of the Alumni Honor Roll. It also features entertainment by students.

Reasons to Believe Community Supporters

Community organizations and businesses form a solid base for supporting the Reasons to Believe program. Supporters are recognized in a variety of ways depending on their sponsorship level.

Who are some of the past Reasons to Believe Alumni Honor Roll recipients?

Past Reasons to Believe Alumni Honor Roll recipients have included local, national and international leaders. The list has run the gamut with military leaders, attorneys, school administrators, doctors, authors and musicians. Some of the more well-known have been:

  • Delano Lewis, former U.S. Ambassador to South Africa
  • Gary Cowger, president of General Motors North America
  • Dr. Kenneth Salyer, founding chairman and director of the International Craniofacial Institute and Cleft Lip Palate Treatment Center, Medical City Dallas Hospital
  • Janet Murguia, president and CEO of the National Council of La Raza
  • Earl Watson, NBA player with the Seattle Supersonics