FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 21, 2021
Contact: Molly Barrie
ASBO International Awards District Leaders Highest Honor in School Business Profession
Ashburn, VA –The Association of School Business Officials International (ASBO) is proud to announce the recipients of the 2021 Eagle Awards, which recognize K–12 business professionals for their exemplary leadership and service to their districts and the school business profession. The Eagle Awards are sponsored by Equitable.
“The Eagle Awards recognize school business professionals who have made unique contributions to the success of their school districts and the advancement of the school business profession,” ASBO International Executive Director David J. Lewis says. “This year’s recipients have overcome significant challenges to ensure that their students have continuous access to a high quality, comprehensive education. We are grateful for their service to their districts and the profession.”
ASBO International’s 2021 International Eagle Award recipient is Charles W. Brazeale, EdD, SFO, assistant superintendent for business and technology and CFO at the City of St. Charles School District in St. Charles, Missouri. Brazeale began his 30-year career in public education as a middle school teacher and high school principal. Then he served as a superintendent of a small rural district before becoming a school business official. Those experiences in multiple positions across education guide his daily work and reinforce his belief that everything the business office does is about the students. He will receive a $5,000 college scholarship to present to a high school student from his district.
ASBO International is also pleased to announce three Distinguished Eagle Award recipients, who will each receive a $2,500 college scholarship to present to a high school student from their district:
Mark Altmayer, CPA, chief financial officer at Huntley Community School District 158 in Algonquin, Illinois. After 19 years in the private sector, Altmayer became the school business official in one of the lowest-funded districts in the Chicago area; finding efficiencies and funding sources is his high priority. Altmayer has spearheaded such initiatives as maximizing district Medicaid reimbursement for special education students and creating legislation that will increase property tax revenues for all taxing districts throughout the state. And, in 2020, the district “flipped the switch” on the largest solar panel installation on school district property in Illinois.
Sharie L. Lewis, CPA, director of business services and operations at Parkrose School District in Portland, Oregon. Lewis, a former U.S. Army drill instructor and law enforcement officer, has a passion for students, staff, and her job. At Parkrose School District, she has developed training classes to educate administrators and business officials on the fiscal aspects of running a school, federal compliance, maintenance of effort, and budgeting. She also serves as a mentor to new school business officials. She goes to Capitol Hill yearly to meet with members of Congress and advocate on behalf of education.
Karen W. Smith, CPA, RTSBA, chief financial officer at Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District in Houston, Texas. Smith has 29 years of school business under her belt and currently oversees school business operations in the third-largest district in Texas. Recognizing the importance of collaboration across the district, she developed a training program to teach new principals their fiscal responsibilities and district financial processes. She also mentors new school business officials and presents at local and national conferences. She was invited to testify before the Texas Legislature on funding for special education, bilingual education, and at-risk students. Parts of her testimony were included in subsequent legislation.
“Since 2008, Equitable has been a proud sponsor of ASBO International’s Eagle Awards,” Fred Makonnen, Equitable divisional vice president and head of western public retirement markets and strategic partnerships, says. “We applaud the 2021 recipients and thank them for their service and leadership in their school districts and their communities.”
All award recipients will be formally recognized at ASBO International’s 2021 Annual Conference & Expo, October 13–16, in Milwaukee, WI. Learn more about the ASBO International Eagle Awards at asbointl.org/Eagle .