The John D. Walda Pathfinder Award recognizes individuals whose lives and careers in higher education business management are inspirations to college and university business officers. The award is conferred based on achievement in the field of business and financial management in higher education, for advocacy on behalf of institutions and those they serve, for leadership on institutional and professional levels, and for transformative initiatives that prepare institutions for the challenges and societal needs of the future.
John D. Walda
John Walda received this award in retirement after 12 years as NACUBO president and CEO. The award was also renamed for him by the NACUBO Board of Directors in recognition of his service.
Mary Lai, former treasurer emeritus and senior advisor at Long Island University, was the first recipient of this honor, then known as the Pathfinder Award.