Wade Winner: Mark Hollick

Congratulations to Mark Hollick of Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School on being chosen as our latest Wade Award winner! Mr. Hollick was nominated by coworker Cindy Zomar for this award, which is bestowed on those professionals who are recognized by their peers for consistently showcasing the qualities of a Wade:

  • Exuding passion for what they do
    Sharing and inspiring their passion in others
    Making a positive difference every day

In her nomination, Ms. Zomar wrote:
“Mark’s wife Jodi jokes that Assabet is her biggest rival – Mark often spends more time at school than at home. He can be seen at most of the sporting events, plays, music events, Exhibit Nights, Parent Nights, Tech Nights, town festivals, dances and community service events. He wields a broom or a mop or a spatula right alongside the students volunteering at Veterans’ Inc., and even visits the homes of recovering staff or grieving parents. Rumor has it that he once brought his own equipment over and mowed the lawns here when the school equipment was down. Mark goes above and beyond in every way, for Assabet Valley means the world to him.

He never considered sending his children to another high school – and they want to follow in his footsteps, giving back to this school one day. He leads by example, would never ask anyone to do something that he himself would not do, and treats all with respect and kindness. He knows most of the students by name ~ AND SHOP! ~ and quite simply makes all the difference in the spirit of our building. The personal touch, the passion, and the welcoming atmosphere are what people comment on when they visit our school, and we can thank Mark for setting that tone, and keeping that benchmark high.

Mark can’t wait to get up in the morning to get to school so he can greet the students as they walk in the door. He loves his job, his school, his staff, and his students, and it is clearly apparent by his friendly demeanor and welcoming attitude.

Mark enjoys our community outreach activities and open houses so that he can speak to others about the value and rewards of a technical education. His passion is palpable. What is particularly remarkable is that former students will come up to speak with him, and he not only remembers their name, but the year they graduated. A memory is only as good as you make it…clearly these people were important enough to Mark that they are etched in his memory, and that’s because he so genuinely cares.

Every day, Mark can be seen moving about the building, stopping to visit with a student, praising a project, and encouraging staff members, giving credit for jobs well done. The students react so positively to his interest in them that their day has been made after some positive comment by him.

For all he does, and, more importantly, for all he embodies, Mark Hollick deserves to be a WADE!”

We interviewed Mr. Hollick to learn more about his leadership philosophy and personal best practices. Here’s what he had to share:

Q: What made you choose education as your lifework?

A: I was very fortunate to have teachers and athletic coaches in high school that served as role models and influenced me to dedicate may career to helping others achieve their goals.

Q: How do you use your role to make a difference for students?

A: As a high school principal, I try to be visible and available to students to address their needs and provide a positive influence every day.

Q: What is the most rewarding aspect of your work?

A: It is always rewarding to see the growth of young people over four years of high school.
Students arrive nervous and unsure in 9th grade and leave confident and prepared by the time they graduate.

Q: How do you help students and parents see the value of a technical education?

A: I emphasize that we offer the “Best of Both Worlds” — preparation for further education and a solid start to a career. I encourage parents to speak to our current students and graduates about their experiences and success.

Q: Are there any additional personal best practices or advice that you’d like to share with our readers?

A: What you say may be remembered, how you make them feel will last a lifetime: Be Positive!

We want to thank Mr. Hollick for taking the time to share these helpful insights, and congratulate him once again on his award. Please feel free to share your congratulations in the comments as well!

Also, we welcome your nominations for those colleagues in your organization who are true Wades. Visit our nomination page to submit a candidate today. We look forward to hearing from you!

About the Author
Mark C. Perna Mark C. Perna is a best-selling author and the founder of TFS in Cleveland, Ohio, a full-service strategic consulting firm whose mission is to share and support every client’s passion for making a difference.

Connect to Mark: Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn

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