The Will J. Hancock Unsung Hero Award is given to business officers who have made extraordinary contributions to their schools and exemplify exceptional integrity, knowledge and motivation. At the end of each school year, new Unsung Heroes receive their award from their head of school, often at a significant school occasion such as a board meeting or an all-school ceremony. What makes these Unsung Heroes so special? The highlights below come straight from their colleagues' nominations.
Title: Assistant Head of School for Finance and Operations
School: Edmund Burke School, Washington, DC
Superpower: Resilience. In April 2022, Edmund Burke School endured a nationally publicized school shooting that injured four community members, destroyed a skybridge walkway on campus and “caused terror and trauma for our entire community,” explained Head of School Steve McManus. “Aimée was not only instrumental in securing the school and everyone in it on that day but also steered the school through the insurance issues, counseling for our faculty and staff, and taking measures to make our school safe.” In the years since, Weil has “maintained a positive outlook, a calm and steady presence, and kept the school functioning, healthy and secure.”
Responsive: In 2022, the school’s insurance carrier indicated they were terminating much of the school’s coverage in major areas in October, due in part to excessive losses from the shooting. “The project of securing new coverage for the school during the busiest time of the school year required Aimée to work day and night, throughout the weekend, for months, to produce the worksheets and applications that our new broker used to shop our coverage in the market,” said McManus. Weil single handedly stewarded this process to a successful outcome, which resulted in the school securing better coverage at a comparable cost.
Financial storyteller: Weil is a natural communicator when it comes to the school’s finances. She “understands the unique mission of school operations and believes that the school's budget should ‘tell the school's story.’” Likewise, she is the first to ask, “How might we?” instead of “No, we can’t.”
Friend to many: According to her head of school, Weil’s colleagues “trust her, respect her and enjoy working with her.” She was also tremendously helpful in providing insights and advice during her head’s first year at the school.