Ron Galatolo, Chancellor of the San Mateo Community College District in California, will receive the 2019 Distinguished Community College System Administrator Award at Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s annual convention, April 4-6 in Orlando, Florida.
This award recognizes the contributions of heads of community college associations, districts, or systems and their demonstrated support for Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) throughout their district and state. Winners may receive this award only once.
Galatolo was nominated by PTK’s Beta Zeta Nu Chapter at Cañada College for his work with the Community College League of California (CCLC), which sponsors the annual All-California Academic Team awards luncheon. He served as CCLC chair from 2015 to 2016.
“In his role as a leader in CCLC, Ron Galatolo was in a unique position to help frame statewide policy and legislation that would advance and support the interests of high-performing students, students most eligible to be (Phi Theta) Kappans,” the nomination read.
Galatolo is a community college graduate and a Phi Theta Kappa alumnus who has actively supported the organization for more than 20 years. Recognizing that the membership fee can be a burden for many students, he led the three colleges in his district to establish a PTK membership reimbursement fund for all eligible students, which provides them with a $100 credit at their campus bookstore.
His impact has been felt on a statewide level as well. During his CCLC term and his term as president of the Chief Executive Officers of the California Community Colleges, Galatolo encouraged other CEOs to pursue similar reimbursement funds. His advocacy has affected more than 2.1 million students each year at 114 community college campuses throughout California.
“Ron is an outstanding model for how the leaders of community college systems and districts can champion student success by putting Phi Theta Kappa membership and its life-changing benefits within reach for their students,” said PTK President and CEO Dr. Lynn Tincher-Ladner. “We are thrilled to present him with this distinguished award, and we look forward to celebrating him in Orlando.”