SCASBO is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2015 Outstanding School Business Official Award. This year the honor goes to Mr. Donnie Wilson. Donnie has exemplified the true meaning of what is to be a professional business official. He has represented our association on numerous occasions at House and Senate sub-committee meetings and done so with dignity. He has been a member or chair of SCASBO’s Legislative Committee where he leaves his personal opinion at the door.Being well versed in education funding he can report on what changes to the formula mean for the State as a whole as well as what those changes mean to large and small districts.
Donnie is always willing and able to assist his colleagues in the business finance field and many look to him for advice. Donnie is also willing to help when the Department of Education is gathering data for statewide implementation of new initiatives. Donnie served as part of the new EFA Working Group committee and provided suggestions as the new funding changes were implemented.
Julie Burns, Kershaw County Chairman, writes the following, “Mr. Wilson is the virtuoso educator, devoted servant, exemplary financial leader for county and state alike, tireless innovator and supporter on behalf of our students and their goals and dreams; his influence is pervasive. His leadership here in Kershaw County was critical as our District absorbed a 17% loss in revenue over a period of about 15 months because of the economic downturn . Without Mr. Wilson’s creativity, expertise, and resilience, our district would not have been able to survive these cuts as successfully as we have. Mr. Wilson also did an outstandingjob of managing the $102 million in bond funds that supported our Facil ities Equalization Program. Because of his strong oversight of these funds, Kershaw County was able to complete 15 projects more than originally planned.
Beyond our district, Mr. Wilson has been the “go to” guy for innumerable legislators and senators. His ideas and savvy are at the heart of pending legislation and in past vital legislative initiati ves. Likewise he i s a key leader at the state level as President and Board member of SCASBO and as Board member for SCAGO. Because of his expertise, he is frequently asked to testify to financial committees at the General Assembly. Moreover, he has the skill to bring these challenging discussions to consensus by carefully reasoned, easy to understand explanations. A gift in conception and reasoning unlike no other.”
In a letter of recommendation, Mellanie Jinnettee writes that “Donnie is a true professional and will continue to represent our organization to the best of his abilities. I truly believe that Donnie is already an Outstanding Business Official and this award would further solidify that fact.”
Frank Morgan, Superintendent for Kershaw County Schools states that “Mr. Wilson is truly at the top of his field. In the eight years I have worked with him, he has been an exemplary financial leader nor only for our district, but at the state level. His leadership here in Kershaw County was critical as our district absorbed a 17% loss in revenue over a period of about 15 months because of the economic downturn. Without Mr. Wilson’s creativity, expertise, and resilience, our district would not have been able to survive these cuts as successfully as we have. Mr.Wilson also did an outstanding job of managing the $102 million in bond funds that supported our Facilities Equalization Program. Because of his strong oversight of these funds, Kershaw County was able to complete 15 projects more than originally planned. Beyond his obvious leadership in our district, Mr. Wilson has been a key leader at the state level through serving as president and a board member of SCASBO and as a board member for SCAGO. Mr. Wilson has also been a major contributor in the development of proposed legislation (SC JET) to restructure how PK-12 education is funded in our state. Because of his expertise, he is frequently asked to testify in front of money-related committees at the General Assembly. Mr. Wilson has a keen knack for being able to patiently and thoroughly explain a complex financial concept in a way that is understandable to the average citizen. Beyond his expertise and leadership skills, Mr. Wilson is an individual of tremendous integrity and dedication to public education. He works effectively with Board members, colleagues,and community members because he sees his job as one of service to our schools and to the community as a whole. During my almost 40 years in education, I have worked with a number of excellent financial people. Donnie Wilson is hands down the best I have ever encountered . I truly believe he is one of the very best school finance officers in our country. I feel very blessed to be able to work with him.”