Academic adviser to retire after 36 years at Highline

By Izzy Anderson - Staff Reporter

After more than 35 years at Highline, Academic Adviser Denny Steussy is looking forward to a retirement filled with community, harmonizing, and family.

July 13 is Steussy's official last day on campus, after 36 years of serving in several Highline positions.

He began working at Highline in 1982, but didn't start out in the advising department. 

"I [originally] worked in the Student Activities office, which is now the Center for Leadership and Service," he said.

Steussy didn't begin his career in higher education at Highline, either.

"Back in 1982, I had been working up at Western Washington University, and my position had finished there. I was looking for a new job, and there was the student activities assistant position open," Steussy said.

Fourteen years later, Steussy would accept the position that led him to the job he has today. 

"In 1996, I moved from student activities into the advising center. From [then] on, I've been here in the advising office."

 Through the years working here, Steussy has found his working environments and work relationships to be very positive, he said. 

"I've been lucky that we've had a very strong, and very supportive advising center for a long time.… You don't always see that occurring," Steussy said. 

He's made many lasting friendships through Highline as well. 

"My good friend Siew Lai Lilley, she is one of my dearest friends," Steussy said. 

Lilley is director of the Transfer Center.

"Toni Castro… has been an advocate, and a supportive person for me," he said.

Castro works as the vice president for Student Services.

Many more people have supported and encouraged him throughout his years here, Steussy said.

However, he is looking forward to the free time retirement will give, to pursue his passions.

 "I'm actively involved in my church, and I sing in the church choir," he said. "We have a small ensemble group that sing songs for the church, called 'The Grace Tenors'. So I look forward to that."

Steussy also plans on traveling more, to spend time with family.

"My grandchildren all live in Oklahoma City with their parents, so I look forward to taking a trip down there to see [them]," he said.

Faculty and staff are holding a retirement party to celebrate everything Steussy has done for Highline today, from 3:30 to 5 p.m. in Building 2.

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