Kathy St. John was recently selected as the 2021 Alumni Fellow for the College of Business.
Kathy St. John believes her Mississippi State University student experience gave her the tools to lead and work with others in accomplishing goals for the betterment of all—an attribute that she continues to uphold each day. As a proud advocate for her alma mater, she is grateful for the honor and opportunity to represent the College of Business as its Alumni Fellow.
The Brookhaven native graduated from MSU with a bachelor’s degree in marketing in 1979. She later pursued a graduate degree in secondary education from the University of Southern Mississippi before beginning her career.
Kathy employed her MSU degree primarily in the landscape and healthcare industries over the years. She was a co-founder of St. John & Associates, a commercial and residential properties sales business in Hattiesburg, before assuming the role of marketing director and sales lead at Hillenmeyer Nurseries in Lexington, Kentucky. In 2005, she transitioned into healthcare. She served as managing director and contracts consultant for a senior-living healthcare group purchasing organization, NAPA HealthCARE Connection, Inc., in Lexington for nearly a decade, retiring in 2015.
Of all her professional endeavors, Kathy is most proud of an entrepreneurial venture that she started in 1988 while living in Memphis, Tennessee. The business began as a small property management operation intended for homeowner associations in planned unit developments and single-family neighborhoods and grew to encompass 11 developments with 750 homes. Kathy employed her MSU education to successfully navigate the business, managing communications and financial operations for each development’s board of directors. A competitor offered a profitable buyout, and Kathy agreed to sell her self-made business in 1994.
Outside her professional pursuits, Kathy is also passionate about giving back, particularly through her service and commitments at MSU. Inspired by her father, a fellow Bulldog graduate, she established the Kathy Moreton St. John Endowed Fellowship in Marketing in 2011 and was an early investor in the Market Innovation Lab and Observatory, enabling the college to purchase the necessary equipment to kick-start the innovative program. Over the years, she and her husband Drew have generously contributed to areas across the university, including athletics and student and faculty support, and created the St. John Family Endowed Professorship in Wildlife Management in 2017.
Kathy is a member of the marketing advisory board, which she earlier chaired for several years, and was recently nominated to chair the executive advisory board for the College of Business beginning in 2022. The second-generation Bulldog believes that giving back to MSU is a continuation of a heritage instilled in her by her dad and considers the nomination to chair the executive advisory board to be the “icing on the cake” for her retirement years.
She and Drew, a 1980 MSU graduate she met on campus during their student years, reside in Madison and have three children.
The MSU Alumni Association will welcome the 2021 class of Alumni Fellows on campus September 23 - 25, 2021. The group will be honored in conjunction with the MSU vs. LSU football game. As Alumni Fellows, these graduates will hold the distinction for life.