CCC President Dr. Leah L. Bornstein receives 2013 ATHENA Award
- Last Updated: 20 February 2014
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- Congratulations to CCC President Dr. Leah L. Bornstein, who was recently awarded the 2013 ATHENA award, given by the Flagstaff Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber gives out the ATHENA award to women leaders who demonstrate the highest levels of professional excellence, commitment to the community, and mentor other women to reach their career goals.
Dr. Bornstein received the award Jan. 24 at the Chamber's Annual Meeting Luncheon at the High Country Conference Center in Flagstaff.
Dr. Bornstein has dedicated more than 25 years to higher education in a variety of leadership and management roles. Throughout her career she has advocated for student success, quality instruction, increased access to education, and strong enrollment and completion rates. Dr. Bornstein has served as CCC's president since 2007.
Dr. Bornstein's many accomplishments include one that has had major impact on Flagstaff and Coconino County, the creation of an award-winning national and state community college/university partnership model, CCC2NAU. The program assists students with a seamless transition into Northern Arizona University.
"In just a few years, Leah Bornstein has had a profound impact on Flagstaff and Coconino County," NAU President Dr. John Haeger wrote in her nomination application. "She is a tireless advocate for CCC and has strengthened the ties between the community college and the university. The path-breaking program of CCC2NAU provides county residents a less expensive yet high quality avenue to an associate and then a baccalaureate degree. Leah is also an important statewide advocate for higher education and represents our state at several regional and national associations. She is a member of Flagstaff 40 and serves her community whenever asked."
In recognition of the leadership, commitment and contributions to NAU and Coconino County, Dr. Bornstein was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in May 2012.
Dr. Bornstein also led the College through unprecedented economic challenges. Her leadership led to a 20 percent increase in enrollment, a budget restructure that improved long-term financial stability recovering from an almost 50 percent budget reduction, CCC's continued accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, and a nationally recognized Sustainable Financial Plan - a model for community colleges facing significant funding reductions. Through Dr. Bornstein's tireless and persistent visits to the Arizona Legislature and the Governor's office, they now know the significance of achieving long-term financial sustainability for this College and Coconino County.
In her role as the first female President at Coconino Community College, Dr. Bornstein mentors women; supporting and guiding them on their pathway to success. Dr. Bornstein mentors young women that are enrolled at both the Community College and at Northern Arizona University. Since arriving at CCC several students have "shadowed" Dr. Bornstein, attending board meetings, college council meetings and other key components to help them get a full understanding of what it takes to be a leader in the community. Dr. Bornstein also encourages all employees at the College to challenge themselves through personal and professional growth; allocating resources whenever possible for staff to obtain training in their areas of expertise. Dr. Bornstein is very accessible to faculty, students and staff, and offers many opportunities to meet with her through monthly brown bag lunches formatted to be informal which encourages open and honest communication.
"As President of Coconino Community College, Dr. Bornstein has served with passion and commitment to this community. I am a successful young woman whose determination was highly influenced by her," wrote Cynthia Pardo, Parent Awareness and Community Outreach Coordinator for First Things First Coconino Regional Partnership Council. "During my time serving as president of the CCC Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, I looked up to Dr. Bornstein as a mentor and an impeccable role model. Her honesty, friendliness, and intellect encouraged me to seek out her friendship and advice. Since that time, I have continued my friendship with her, and think she is a perfect candidate to be recognized."