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 White Mountain School, Bethlehem, New Hampshire
Years in current position: 7
Years in an independent school business office: 25
Superpower: Smooth transitions: Constantine provided consistency and institutional knowledge to the school’s leadership team through a few head of school transitions. He also helped mentor a new assistant head of school this past year. “He offers institutional memory even as he pushes us to update our practices,” said former Head of School Tom Reid.
Student supporter: As one of the boarding school’s administrators on duty, Constantine “routinely goes above and beyond to offer special experiences for students.” For example, he buys fireworks each year to offer a special celebration of Lunar New Year for the school’s international students. “He is constantly asking questions about how students are doing, curious about their experiences and how the school can best support them,” said Reid.
Eye for endowment: This past year, Constantine collaborated with a new finance committee chair to help the school switch oversight of its endowment and tighten up its financial practices, making them more professional.
Yes man: “While Rob has many situations in a small school where he has to say no, especially about financial questions, he is also a primary voice in finding ways to support students and employees as they navigate life, said Reid. “Perhaps most telling, and something other CFOs would understand, is that he makes supportive decisions even when he may not receive any credit.”
Many hats: In addition to overseeing financial operations at The White Mountain School, Constantine also oversees HR and operations, and serves as an administrator on duty. “He juggles all of his roles capably and without complaint,” said Reid.