Long-time Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) Trustee, Barry Riley was recently awarded the Ohio Association of Community Colleges' (OACC) Maureen C. Grady Award for Special Achievement. The award is given to trustees in recognition of their extraordinary leadership and outstanding contributions to their individual college or community colleges as a whole.
"During Mr. Riley's 25-year tenure as a board member, the college's headcount has doubled, numerous buildings have been added to our beautiful 155-acre Newark campus, 21 degree programs have been added to our curriculum and three full-service extended campuses have been established to better serve the residents of our multi-county service area," wrote COTC President Bonnie L. Coe, Ph.D., in her nomination letter for Riley. "It is hard to imagine this growth and success without dedicated and visionary board members such as Mr. Riley."
The Maureen C. Grady award was first presented to its namesake in 1994. Serving as an example for all trustees to emulate, Maureen C. Grady dedicated much of her life to furthering the mission of community colleges in Ohio and throughout the nation. A former trustee of Clark State Community College, Grady also served as the first chairperson for the OACC from 1993 to 1994. In addition to her work at the state level, Ms. Grady served on the boards of both the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) and the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT). Trustees who have been selected as recipients of this award embody the qualities and characteristics Ms. Grady has demonstrated during her years of service.
On Riley's behalf, Dr. Coe accepted the award at the OACC 2016 Excellence Awards luncheon at the Sinclair Community College Conference Center in Dayton. OACC also recognized COTC Alumnus Randy Thorp at the luncheon as one of the nominees for the 2016 Distinguished Alumnus Award. Thorp currently serves as Licking County Sheriff and graduated from COTC in 2000, receiving his associate's degree in criminal justice technology.
"Sheriff Thorp has been a true advocate for Central Ohio Technical College since he graduated in 2000, and he has used his degree in Criminal Justice Technology to not only further his career, but also to positively impact the local community. During his 33-year tenure with the Licking County Sheriff's Office, Sheriff Thorp has implemented several programs to keep the members of the local community educated and safe," wrote Dr. Coe in her nomination letter. "Because of his numerous professional achievements, his continued dedication to COTC, and his relentless advocacy for a safer and more educated community, I believe Licking County Sheriff Randy Thorp is an excellent candidate for this award."
Central Ohio Technical College opened in 1971 and is celebrating its 45th anniversary in 2016. COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs, as well as encouraging the professional development of students, staff, faculty and administrators to assist them in achieving their maximum potential. COTC is the only technical college in Ohio operating four full-service campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.