Poth Retires from Northern Essex Community College; Business Center Now in Her Name

Jean Poth, known for her love of all things Disney, dons Mickey Mouse ears at her retirement party. (WHAV News photograph.)

Even as her retirement party was starting Monday, Jean Poth was closing on yet another donation to Northern Essex Community College.

And that, says Northern Essex President lane A. Glenn, personifies Poth’s nearly 45-year commitment to the local institution.

“Jean works all the way up until the very last minute. Just please know she was working on a deal in the room today and transacting business and getting an agreement from this individual. He says, ‘And you know, you’re really going to miss her. She knows how to twist arms,’ and of course I added, yes, and when they don’t twist properly, she knows how to break them,” Glenn jokes.

Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini presents a city citation to Jean Poth, retiring after nearly 45 years of service to Northern Essex Community College. (WHAV News photograph.)

Glenn used the occasion to announce the dedication of the “Jean C. Poth Center for Business and Accounting” within the Spurk classroom building. He says Poth is a person of many contrasts from being “tough as nails” to having a “soft side and caring side of her personality.” He credited her with creating the Northern Essex Community College Foundation, a nonprofit fundraising arm that has raised millions of dollars in support for the institution, building purchases and student scholarships.

Poth spoke briefly, thanking former college President John R. Dimitry, who was in attendance; Mayor James J. Fiorentini and many others. Known for her love of Mickey Mouse and all things Walt Disney, Poth donned Mickey Mouse ears. “I’ve had a very successful career and it’s like winning the Super Bowl. Where do you go when you win the Super Bowl?”

The crowd knew the answer, shouting “Disney World.”

Poth joined the college in 1974, becoming part of the business faculty and going on to lead the department and then moved onto dean and then vice president of institutional advancement. Outside of the college, she was a Haverhill Rotary Club member and chair of the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce.

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