Wednesday, June 3, 2020 – Each year, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) presents awards to deserving members of the financial aid profession and higher education community. These awards are reviewed and selected annually by NASFAA’s Awards Committee and ratified by the Board of Directors.
NASFAA this year recognized two recipients with its 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest honor which the association can bestow on a member:
Ron Day, Director of Student Financial Aid, Kennesaw State University. Day has given unselfishly of his time and knowledge to help others in the financial aid profession for over 30 years. He is a strong advocate for what he believes to be true and right and is never afraid to ask the tough questions. Ron has been a mentor to many in his state, the region and nationally. He served as 2012-13 NASFAA National Chair, during which time he focused on fostering a cohesive and participatory board and helping his peers grow as leaders and gain stature as a profession. Ron received NASFAA’s Allan Purdy Distinguished Service Award in 2013 and been honored by GASFAA with the Donald E. Payton Lifetime Achievement Award, and with SASFAA’s Distinguished Service Award. Ron recently announced a July 1 retirement date; we thank him for his years of service.
David Gelinas, Director of Financial Aid, Davidson College. Throughout the course of his career, Gelinas has given a lifetime of service to the financial aid community. He has held virtually every committee position at the state, regional and national level, and has served as both state and regional president. Fondly known as “Sheriff Dave,” he served as 2005-06 NASFAA National Chair, and during his tenure, he encouraged NASFAA members to serve as catalysts for positive change in college-going behaviors and urged members to advocate for the primacy of need-based aid in policy decisions. Gelinas has announced he’ll be retiring July 10, and we thank him for his leadership and support of the profession through the years.
The Allan W. Purdy Distinguished Service Award, one of the highest awards that NASFAA bestows, may be awarded either for significant contributions in the furtherance of NASFAA’s goals over a sustained period of time, or for a single contribution of momentous importance. The 2020 award was given to:
David Sheridan, Director of Financial Aid, Columbia University – School of International and Public Affairs. Throughout the course of his career, Sheridan has worked with both undergraduate and graduate students and in both the private and public sections. In previous positions, he has overseen offices of the registrar, admissions, bursar and new student orientation, in addition to financial aid. He has served as a member of NASFAA’s Higher Education Committee of 50, chair of NASFAA's Federal Issues Committee , chair of NASFAA's Graduate and Professional Loan Limits Task Force, NJASFAA Past President, NJASFAA Past Chair Federal Relations, EASFAA Past Training Chair, EASFAA Past Federal Relations Chair, EASFAA Past Conference Chair, and EASFAA Conference Chair.
The Meritorious Achievement Award is presented to an individual who has made either an important single contribution to NASFAA or the profession, or multiple significant contributions. The 2020 award was given to:
The Robert P. Huff Golden Quill Award is presented each year to an individual, or organization, chosen for their contributions to the literature on student financial aid. Published works must exemplify the highest quality of research methodology, analysis, or topical writing on the subject of student financial aid or its administration. In 2020 the award was given to:
Center for American Progress (CAP). This Washington, D.C.-based public policy research and advocacy organization was chosen because of their overall body of work, which greatly enhances the lives of students and families — and particularly for their work on “One and Done: Modeling a One-Time FAFSA.” To determine if a one-time FAFSA could be implemented and who it would most help, CAP worked with Association of Community College Trustees and NASFAA to gather data from 27 colleges around the U.S. for nearly a quarter of a million student who filled out the FAFSA at least two times. CAP’s findings suggested that a one-time FAFSA could be implemented for all students, which would yield universal benefits to students and colleges.
The association also presented six Regional Leadership Awards to recipients who have exhibited high integrity and character, have shown creative leadership, and have inspired and encouraged others to actively participate in professional development. One award was given in each of six regions to:
EASFAA – Neville Brown, Associate Director of Financial Services, Eastern Connecticut State University
MASFAA – Aaron Steffens, Associate Director of Financial Aid, Luther College
RMASFAA – Vicki Kucera, Area Director of Student Financial Services, Central Community College
SASFAA – Keith Reeves, Systems Business Analyst, Clemson University
SWASFAA – Shannon Crossland, Senior Director, Compliance and Administration, Texas Tech University
WASFAA – Kim Wells, Federal Student Aid Training Officer, U.S. Department of Education
The Gold Star Award, which recognizes innovative ideas in the financial aid arena at any level, targeted toward any constituency, was given in 2020 to:
To request an interview with a NASFAA spokesperson, please email Director of Marketing and Communications Erin Powers at [email protected].
The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) is a nonprofit membership organization that represents more than 28,000 financial aid professionals at nearly 3,000 colleges, universities, and career schools across the country. NASFAA member institutions serve nine out of every 10 undergraduates in the United States. Based in Washington, D.C., NASFAA is the only national association with a primary focus on student aid legislation, regulatory analysis, and training for financial aid administrators. For more information, visit www.nasfaa.org.
Publication Date: 6/3/2020