Benevolent Bruins: Charles and Linda Stout

Charles and Linda Stout

Food insecurity is a hardship that millions of people living in the U.S. face. In light of rising tuition costs, it is no surprise that college students are not immune. Specifically, community college students face unique challenges, including limited access to consistent and nutritious food. In turn, this naturally affects many aspects of a student’s life, including their ability to be a successful student in and outside of the classroom, and their chances to graduate.

So, when KCC Foundation Executive Director Teresa Durham announced the launch of the Bruin Basket Project in 2019, an initiative that consists of free healthy snack food stations, Battle Creek residents Charles and Linda Stout did not hesitate to bring in food items. That was the start of their ongoing support that continues today to help hundreds of students challenged with food needs.

Charles graduated from Battle Creek Central in 1967 and completed electronics training during the evening at Calhoun Area Technology Center (then called Vo-ed Center) while maintaining a career as an industrial electrician at United Steel & Wire. Linda graduated from Pennfield High School in 1965. Several years later as a single mother of three, she was taking night classes at KCC while working two jobs. Eventually she became a purchasing assistant at United Steel & Wire, where she met Charles. They celebrated their 35th anniversary on Feb. 14, sharing four children and five grandchildren. Two of their grandchildren graduated from KCC this past May.

In addition to establishing the Eldon and Emma Draime Scholarship Fund along with Linda’s brother, Lindsay Draime, Charles and Linda state that they feel compelled to contribute funds and food to the Bruin Basket project because this is a real need that they want to fill. Linda recalls the years she struggled to maintain food for her family and is concerned that many individuals may choose to not attend college because they can’t make ends meet.

Chares and Linda encourage others to help support this project and they say a little bit goes a long way. The KCC Foundation could not agree more and are grateful for these amazing benevolent bruins!

Interested in giving to the Bruin Basket project? Learn more or donate today online at

This article first appeared in the December 2023 edition of BruIN magazine. To read the issue online, please visit