Honors, Awards, & Scholarships
WASA Honorary Awards
WASA annually honors and recognizes outstanding educational
administrators and individuals in other professions who have made
extraordinary contributions to K–12 education.
Based on the award type for which a person is nominated, the Committee
will make the following considerations:
Could the nominee be considered a positive change agent in public
education locally or at the state level?
Has the nominee positively affected one or more areas: Program
development, staff morale, community support, student interest, learning
environment, or general support for public education?
Has the nominee provided creative leadership in inspiring or
motivating others to achieve or contribute to public education?
Has the nominee personally provided a special service or achieved
above and beyond what is expected in the usual public school
Have others recognized the nominee as a force for constructive change
in public education at the community and/or state level?
Golden Gavel Award. The recipient shall be an
individual, group, association, or firm that has made an outstanding
contribution to public education in the state of Washington. The
contribution to education should have statewide application and be of
lasting value. This award does not require current or past WASA
membership. One recipient per year (award not necessarily given
Barbara Mertens Legacy Award. Presented to an
individual or group who has had a significant impact on public education
in Washington—a legacy that has a lasting influence. The person or
group does not have to be a member of WASA. The award comes with a
$1,000 gift from D.A. Davidson & Company that is awarded to a
school, foundation, or similar in the awardee's name and at his/her
direction. One recipient per year (award not necessarily given every
Service to WASA Award. The recipient shall have made
contributions at the state level toward goals of WASA and shall not be a
voting member of WASA. One recipient per year (award not necessarily
given every year).
WASA Leadership Award. This award is presented to a
selected WASA member who demonstrates and exemplifies outstanding
leadership abilities and has made significant contributions to the field
of education on a statewide level. Each region may nominate one
individual from that region. The nominee must be a current member of
WASA for a minimum of two years. One recipient per year.
WASA Student Achievement Leadership Award (one
award per region). Recognizes innovative programs for the
improvement of student achievement. This award is presented to select
WASA members who have provided leadership for the implementation of an
innovation that has resulted in measurable growth in student
achievement. Ideally, the innovation can serve as a tool for modeling
new programs. Each region shall nominate one individual. The nominee
must be a current and active WASA member for a minimum of TWO
Award of Merit (one award per region). The
recipient of this award shall have demonstrated effective leadership at
the region level and have made a significant contribution to WASA
through his/her work in the field of education in Washington. The
nominee must be a current and active member of WASA for a minimum of
Community Leadership (WASA provides one plaque;
additional plaques will be paid by region). This award is presented
to community members or groups in recognition of their outstanding
contributions toward education. Recipients are non-WASA members.
Specific criteria includes: benefit to students, leadership, motivation,
success, cooperation/coordination with local district, recognition by
others, and history of service. One or more recipients per region,
Twenty-Year Award (self-nomination).
Recognizes individual’s years of service to education. This award
shall be granted to any school administrator who has served as an
administrator for 20 years in public school districts. The recipient
must have been a member of WASA for TEN years.
Retirement Award (self-nomination). Honors
service to the profession. The recipient must be retiring from his/her
administrative responsibilities and no longer eligible for active WASA
membership. The recipient must be a current member of
View a list of Honorary Award winners: 2013 | 2012 | 2011
PEMCO / School Employees Credit Union of Washington / WASA
Robert J. Handy Most Effective Administrator Awards
Established in 2002, these awards recognize outstanding Washington
public school administrators. One highly effective superintendent,
central office administrator, or building administrator will be selected
from a small district (up to 500 students), medium-sized district
(501–2,000 students), and large district (over 2,000
A $10,000 award will be equally divided among the three winners. The
award may be used for personal or professional growth and/or to support
and disseminate information about a successful school or district
program. Self-nominations or nominations by others may be submitted by
filling out this form and emailing it to Marilee Jensen at the WASA
Seattle-Northwest Securities Corporation / WASA
Dr. Doyle E. Winter Scholarship for Administrative Leadership in
Designed to assist talented and committed educational administrators as
they enhance those skills and abilities needed to serve as educational
leaders in the field of public education, a $1,000 scholarship will
be awarded to a school administrator who is presently in or will begin a
doctoral program in education.
AASA National Superintendent of the Year Program
WASA assists AASA in coordinating Washington’s Superintendent of
the Year. Nominations are due to WASA by October 1 of each year.
Washington’s Superintendent of the Year will participate in the
National Superintendent of the Year process. Visit the AASA
website for more information.