Dr. Dorothy Janice Kolts, an English professor and adviser to the Courier newspaper for nearly 20 years, died on April 13 in Altadena. She would have been 91 years old in May.
An adviser to the Courier from 1972 until her exit from the college in 1990, Kolts was one of two recipients of the first Risser Award, which is given to outstanding faculty and staff at PCC.
Born in Long Beach, Kolts had also been a professor at the University of La Verne, according to the Pasadena Star News.
She co-wrote the textbook “Grammar: The Writer’s Tool” with Ester Davis, which was published in 1988 through the University of La Verne Press.
During much of her time on the Courier, Holts was an advisor alongside Mikki Bolliger, and saw the paper through growth and beyond from the letterpress days of the Linotype.
“When I was hired at PCC, there were three advisers for four pages,” said Bolliger. “When Dorothy left, it was eight to 12 pages.”
According to Bolliger, Kolts taught English at PCC and the Courier was part of the department. Later, the paper was switched to Communications and the Visual Arts and Media Studies.
“She made a major contribution to the paper,” said Bolliger. “We really brought the newspaper from being letter press printing through the first stages of computer when it was punch taped. And then we brought it through with two computers. It was the first steps of the computer age.”
Bolliger said that Kolts loved teaching, loved the students and “spent a lot of time with the students individually” where she earned a title that Bolliger said “fit her best.”
“’I am the momma bear of this department,’” said Bolliger of Kolts “And I think that pretty much described it. She was very nurturing with the students.”
Although she was an adviser on the Courier from 1972 to 1990, according to librarian Walter Butler at the Shatford Library, Kolts “began instruction in Journalism in 1965.”
Kolts organized through to published the annual yearbooks during her time at PCC. The Shatford Library on campus now contains most, if not all, of the yearbooks that Kolts organized and created–a practice that is long gone from the college.
But the antique Linotype machine that Kolts helped to make obsolete sits on display at the Shatford, as if in reminder of the life, teaching and love of work that she brought to the campus.