Paula Leach Pope

Offices/Positions Held on the Board: 
Member, Academic and Student Affairs Committee; Member, Audit and Compliance Committee; Member, Human Resources and University Relations Committee; and Board of Trustees Member, University Joint Committee on Honorary Degrees.
July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2026

An alumna of the UK College of Education, Paula Leach Pope earned her bachelor’s in education and master’s in higher education. She was a teacher in the Fayette County Public Schools and served as an assistant to Lexington’s mayor and assistant director of the Greater Lexington Chamber of Commerce before joining her alma mater as a fundraiser in 1983.

Ms. Pope worked first for UK Libraries, where she played an integral role in the William T. Young Library fundraising campaign, as well as co-chairing the University’s United Way campaign. Ms. Pope then moved to the Office of Philanthropy in 2000 where she oversaw the UK Fellows Society, the campaign to restore the historic Main Building; UK Women and Philanthropy; and co-chaired the University’s 2015 Sesquicentennial Celebration. Ms. Pope retired from UK in 2018.

A Life Member of the UK Alumni Association, Ms. Pope has been very active at all levels of the organization. She was a 1999 recipient of the association’s Distinguished Service Award and served as its national president in 2008-2009. She also has held leadership positions in numerous Lexington civic and charitable organizations.