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: Chief Financial Officer
School: The Walker School, Marietta, Georgia
Years in Position: 12
Years in an independent school business office: 18
Superpower: Industry leader: Holman is the “go-to person for best practices in the [region] … and supports the growth of others. She helps the members of her staff assume leadership roles in associations and community service organizations,” according to Damian Kavanaugh, executive director of Mid-South Independent School Business Officers. When others pose questions on listservs or other forums, Holman “serves as a sounding board to the next generation of leaders in schools.” Before the pandemic, she would offer her school as a meeting place for regional events. “Everyone who knows her adores her and the hospitality she routinely rolls out,” wrote Kavanaugh.
Team player: Holman “possesses the most critical organizational leadership trait — she does not place her importance above the goals of our school. To that point, Christie will assist in any task if it benefits the school. Christie does not see any job as ‘beneath her’; she is the ultimate team player,” said Walker Head of School Jack Hall.
Above and beyond: Prior to joining The Walker School, Holman was the director of finance at the Schenck School in Sandy Springs, Georgia. When she left The Schenck School for her current position at The Walker School, “she was always open and helpful to her successor and to other new business officers at other schools” wrote Schneck Head of School Gena Calloway Farinholt. “Her help with the transition at Schenck was truly above and beyond.”
Other duties as assigned: Holman has served as a member of the Independent School Benefits Consortium (ISBC) Advisory Council for more than five years. She is also active with SAIS as an accreditation team member and has facilitated SAIS conference sessions in the Leadership Development Institute and the Institute for New Heads.
See a full list of the 2021 recipients and read more about the Will J. Hancock Unsung Hero Award. NetAssets.org will post additional profiles of Unsung Heroes throughout the fall — check in to learn more about other recipients.