Dr. Wally Fronczek is excited to be named the recipient of the Vernon O. Crawley Leadership Award and says it’s even more special because of the person for whom the award is named.

“I’m humbled,” Fronczek said. “Excited to be nominated and humbled to receive the award. The award’s name means a lot to me because I’ve been fortunate to work with Dr. (Vernon) Crawley for so long. He was a mentor to me. This award means a great deal because he and his wife are so important to me. Getting an award in his name is just very special.”

One of his nominators said, “Wally’s leadership style always allows us to be next to him and learn the ins and outs of different processes as we work toward shared goals.” Another said, “The leader sets the tone and the vision, and Wally keeps his large and diverse team positive, moving forward and focused on our students.”

Nominators also said Fronczek does not shy away from challenges but instead approaches them as opportunities. “These opportunities often become a framework for growth, learning and change at the department, division and college levels.”

Nominators detailed many of Fronczek’s strengths: being supportive, leading by example, being patient, collaborative, a valued mentor, trusted friend, positive, inspiring, and an excellent listener. His nominators added, “Perhaps Wally’s greatest attribute is his belief in the college’s mission and values and the gift of his collaborative nature and solid work ethic. Wally is never about power, control or ego; He is all about helping others find their voice, find their place in our institution and our community, and to be the best they can be.” Also noted by one of the nominators was that, “Wally has been and continues to be a shining example of leadership in the spirit of this award’s namesake.”

This award speaks volumes to Fronczek’s leading abilities. “Leadership is important at community colleges because of the role we play in education, in society and in people’s lives. It’s vital we have good leadership and that we develop new leaders,” Fronczek said.