Zastrow Award Recipients

  • 2023 - Kent Ellickson, Onalaska
  • 2022 - Janet Rosseter, Sun Prairie 
  • 2021 - Steve Summers, Waunakee
  • 2020 - Joe Ledvina, La Crosse
  • 2019 - Patrick Finnemore, Kenosha
  • 2018 - Wendy Brockert, Lake Mills
  • 2017 - Sue Schnorr, Oshkosh 
  • 2016 – Janice DeMeuse, Fox Point-Bayside
  • 2015 – Larry Dalton, Onalaska
  • 2014 – Jenny Goldschmidt, Clintonville
  • 2013 – Gary Kvasnica, Kimberly Area
  • 2012 – Diane Pertzborn, De Forest Area
  • 2011 – Kenneth Mischler, Manitowoc
  • 2010 – Mark Van Der Zee, Menasha Joint
  • 2009 – Thomas Wohlleber, Middleton-Cross Plains
  • 2008 – Gail Moesch, Shawano
  • 2007 – Theodore Kozlowski, De Forest Area
  • 2006 – Roger Price, Madison Metropolitan
  • 2005 – Thomas R. Owens, DC Everest
  • 2004 – Woodrow Wiedenhoeft, La Crosse
  • 2003 – Lawrence H. Krebs, Neenah Joint
  • 2002 – Harold "Al" Gosda, Seymour Community
  • 2001 – John C. Sackett, Eau Claire Area
  • 2000 – Elizabeth Rossiter, West Bend
  • 1999 – Douglas L. Johnson, Oconomowoc
  • 1998 – Daniel D. Van De Water, Green Bay Area
  • 1997 – Robert C.F. Borch, Elmbrook
  • 1996 – George P. Beres, New Berlin
  • 1995 – George H. Gray, UW-Whitewater
  • 1994 – Howard L. Sampson, Madison Metropolitan
  • 1993 – Clayton Jackson, Menasha

Wallace E. Zastrow Award

Wally Zastrow

Sponsored by Wisconsin Investment Series Cooperative (WISC)

Nominate a candidate by January 8, 2024 using this form! 

Background & Purpose

The Wallace E. Zastrow Award is the highest legacy honor the Wisconsin Association of School Business Officials (WASBO) bestows on its members. Wallace E. Zastrow was a charter member of WASBO and served as the Association’s first Executive Director. Through his leadership, WASBO gained recognition and respect as an outstanding educational organization within the State of Wisconsin and ASBO International. This annual award is to recognize the many years of service, commitment, and dedication “Wally” gave to his profession, and to thank him for the example he established for school business officials.

Purpose of Award

The purpose of the award is to honor the legacy career accomplishments, outstanding contributions, and years of service of active WASBO members who have displayed visionary leadership, commitment and dedication. Award winners have made significant contributions to better the profession, public education, the school districts they serve, and WASBO. Given the capstone nature of this award, the legacy and leadership accomplishments of the nominee from throughout her/his career will be considered. While the award is to honor a career, it is not limited to honor only those at the end of their career. (Nominations for recent contributions to the local school district and community, as well as to the profession as a whole, should be directed to the School Business Manager of the Year Award.)

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible candidates must:
  • Be an active school business official employed in the profession for a minimum of 10 years.
  • For purposes of this award, a school business official is defined as an individual who is associated with a public or private school district, vocational/technical school, college or university and fulfills a position such as business manager or business assistant, accounting or finance officer, buildings and grounds supervisor or coordinator of auxiliary services (i.e. food services, informational technology, purchasing services, transportation supervisor, or other business support staff).
  • Be an active district professional WASBO member in good standing for at least 10 years or have been a retiree member for two years or less and a member for 12 consecutive months prior to January 1 of the year the member is considered for the award.
  • Not have previously received the Zastrow Award.
  • Current members of the Board of Directors are ineligible for the award.
  • Nominations may be made by any WASBO member (with the exception of current Board members), a district administrator, a professional colleague or a WASBO Regional.
  • A letter of recommendation from the nominee’s district administrator supporting her/his candidacy should accompany the nomination.

Selection Criteria

The candidate along with nomination materials must provide evidence of educational leadership during their career. The examples below are not a comprehensive list.

Leadership in the Schools – The nominee has dedicated her/himself to improve the learning environment for students by:
  • Implementing effective educational programs, processes, or initiatives to enhance student learning
  • Creating or enhancing a climate and culture of trust with the school board and broader community
  • Providing active leadership in developing relationships that help provide for effective educational programs
  • Developing and enhancing partnerships between the school district and the local community
Leadership in the Profession – The nominee has demonstrated commitment to improving the level of professionalism among school business officials through:
  • Making an ongoing contribution to the professional development of colleagues and peers
  • Advancing the mission and vision of WASBO through active participation
  • Advocating for public education through active participation in current legislative issues
Professional Development – The nominee has demonstrated a continuous interest in personally developing as an education professional and helping colleagues develop their leadership and professionalism by:
  • Earning additional graduate level degrees in education or business related fields
  • Attaining professional accreditations (CSRM, CFM, SFO, CPA)
  • Being recognized by the International Association of School Business Officials by earning the Certificate of Excellence in Financial Reporting, the Meritorious Budget Award, and/or the Pathway to the MBA
  • Encouraging colleagues and subordinates to develop their professionalism and leadership
Leadership in the Community – The nominee has demonstrated active involvement in the local community in activities outside of the duties of their professional position. Active involvement goes beyond being a member of a benevolent organization, but requires being actively engaged in activities designed to improve the lives of others in the community.


A $2,000 award and plaque will be presented at the annual WASBO Foundation Spring Conference, provided by Wisconsin Investment Series Cooperative (WISC). The cash award is intended to fund continuing professional development for the Business Official, such as attendance at conferences or seminars, membership dues, or other related activities or resources for her/him and/or her/his staff. In the case a retiree receives the Zastrow Award, the reitree’s last district of employment will receive the cash award to fund the professional development of staff at that District. The recipient may also present a $1,500 scholarship to a high school senior in her/his school district. The recipient will be the WASBO nominee for that year's ASBO International Eagle Award, ASBO’s lifetime achievement award.

The Zastrow Award recipient’s name shall be added to the plaque in the WASBO office and a letter of commendation shall be sent to the recipient’s school board by the Executive Director on behalf of the Board of Directors. Press releases will be sent to local media.

Selection Process

The WASBO Board of Directors considers nominations at its Board meeting following the nomination deadline and selects the Award recipient. The Board’s decision is final.