The Kent Chamber of Commerce will be holding an insightful and informative Educational Update Luncheon this Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023 at the Green River College Kent campus.

This event will run from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., and will bring together esteemed panelists from various educational institutions and programs to shed light on the latest trends and developments in the world of education.

During this luncheon, panelists will be given 7-10 minutes each to update the business community on the exciting happenings within their respective schools or programs. They will discuss topics such as student achievements, graduation rates, and the significant impact their institutions are making on the local workforce.

“We invite you to join us for this engaging event, where you will have the opportunity to gain new perspectives, network with fellow business professionals, and celebrate the positive contributions made by these educational institutions and programs in Kent.”

Confirmed Speakers:

  • AJAC – Lynn Strickland – Executive Director: Demetria “Lynn” Strickland comes from a military family and is an Army veteran who served honorably in the Army for over nine years.  Lynn has 25+ years of management experience in several sectors.  She is a former Dean of Instruction at Bates Technical College where she supervised 14 apprenticeship programs, 11 career training programs and Continuing Education. Lynn began working for AJAC |Advanced Manufacturing Apprenticeships as a Program Manager in February 2012, was promoted to Deputy Director in July 2012 and has served as Executive Director since August 2014.  Lynn and the AJAC team develop and implement employer driven pre-apprenticeship, youth apprenticeship and registered apprenticeship programs for the incumbent workforce which is open to all employers across Washington State in the advanced manufacturing industries.  AJAC, under Lynn’s leadership, developed and implemented the first state-wide registered youth apprenticeship programs in WA state.
  • Renton Technical College President – Yoshiko Harden: Dr. Yoshiko Harden (she, her) currently serves as the president of Renton Technical College. In this role she provides leadership and oversight for all aspects of the college.  Prior to this role, Dr. Harden served as the interim president of Seattle Central College, one of three colleges in the Seattle Colleges District. Dr. Harden also served as the Vice President for Student Services at Seattle Central. In this position she led the Student Services division and units such as, Student Development, Student Success, Enrollment Services, Guided Pathways and Faculty Counseling. 
  • Green River College – Kent Campus Director – Burl Battersby: Prior to joining Green River College as the Kent Campus Director, in October 2022, Burl Battersby worked in hospitality management. He first was drawn to education when he was a high school exchange student and dreamt of becoming an English Professor and moving to China to teach. Instead, after working in hotels for 20+ years in Scottsdale, San Francisco, and Seattle, he was able to connect with his true passion by becoming TESOL certified and he taught the hotel’s housekeeping staff English in the basement of the Sheraton for many years. This experience inspired him to return to pursuing his dream of working in higher education. He went back to college and completed a bachelor’s degree in Humanities in 2012 and an Executive MBA in 2013. Burl then taught Hospitality Management courses as an Adjunct at South Seattle College and at Skagit Valley College before switching careers to join Green River College. Passionate about helping others achieve their potential, Burl continually looks for opportunities to help students thrive. 
  • Highline College – Dr. Jamilyn Penn, Vice President of Student Services: Dr. Jamilyn Penn is a fierce advocate for student success, having served in many roles in our state system. Most recently, she was the statewide director of transfer education for the Washington State Board for Community & Technical Colleges. She has also served in dean roles at Lake Washington and Clover Park Technical Colleges. Dr. Penn possesses a strong fiscal background, as she previously was the program supervisor of Title I and Learning Assistance Program for the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. In that role, she monitored 295 public school districts across the state in areas of budgeting and compliance. Dr. Penn began her career in the classroom serving as a special education teacher in Texas.

WHEN: Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023:

  • 11 – 11:30 a.m. – Networking 
  • 11:30 a.m. – Welcome 
  • 11:45 a.m. – Panel 
  • 12:50 p.m. Close 


  • Members: $30
  • Non-Members: $50
  • Vendor Table: $150

WHERE: Green River College Kent Campus, 417 Ramsay Way #112, Kent WA 98032, Room 282/283.


More info here:

Scott Schaefer

Founder/Publisher/Editor. Three-time National Emmy Award winning Writer (“Bill Nye the Science Guy”), Director, Producer, Journalist and more...