She graduated from Western Kentucky University earning a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology with a minor in Social Welfare. In 1973, she earned a Master of Arts Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kentucky. Ms. Cavanaugh received Rank 1, Certification in Secondary Administration and Supervision in 1985 and returned to the University of Kentucky in 1989 to complete a minor and certification in History.
In July of 2002, Ms. Cavanaugh retired from Fayette County Public Schools with 30.6 years of service after teaching at Tates Creek High School and the new Paul Lawrence Dunbar. She was employed with the Bethune Institute (Lexington) as an Academic Coordinator Consultant. She retired in March 2009 from United Way of the Bluegrass after serving five years as the Founder and Coordinator of their Get On Board Program.
While at Wesley UMC, she served as the first African American woman to become dean of the Kentucky Conference United Methodist School of Christian Missions. She was an active member of Word of Life Christian Center and served at God’s Pantry, Hope Center, OLLI of University of Kentucky and the Federal Medical Center (Atwood Camp) Prison Ministry.
God wondrously placed in her life one adored daughter, Dr. Melanie, son-in-law, Dr. Leke and grandchildren; sister and brother, Shirlene Wharton of Cadiz and Plomer Cavanaugh, Jr. of Bellwood, Illinois and a deceased brother, Daniel Cavanaugh. Several beloved nieces and nephews; a plethora of cherished and devoted friends, relatives and acquaintances.
A Memorial service will be held on April 6, 2013, at Wesley United Methodist Church, 1825 Russell Cave Road, Lexington, KY 40505. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Susie A. Cavanaugh Scholarship Fund: College Heights Foundation, Western Kentucky University, 1906 College Heights Blvd., Bowling Green, KY 42101. www.clarklegacycenter.com.