School CFO Earns National Award
Avon Old Farms School’s Chief Financial Officer Robert Orenstein was selected by the National Business Officers Association (NBOA) as this year’s recipient of the Will J. Hancock Unsung Hero Award. The award is given to independent school business officers who have made extraordinary contributions to their schools. It is named after Will J. Hancock, who always went above and beyond the call of duty during his 35 years at Hawaii Preparatory Academy in a variety of positions, where he touched many lives and inspired countless independent school business officers along the way.
Head of School Jim Detora ’12 presented the award to Orenstein at an all-school morning meeting, where he thanked him for his many contributions to the school. Within the last year alone, Orenstein has been instrumental in dorm renovation projects; improvements to athletic facilities including a new turf football/lacrosse field, stadium lighting, a new track, and new tennis courts; and maintaining the solid financial foundation of the school.
“Being a CFO is an important and often underappreciated job, but the work Mr. Orenstein has done over the last several years has certainly helped propel the school forward,” Detora said. “On behalf of the school, I thank him for all of his efforts.”
Of course, to earn this award, the recipient must go above and beyond their daily duties. According to Jackie Morr, who has worked with Orenstein in the business office for close to 10 years, he has definitely done that.
“He has a lot of layers to him that benefit AOF. Not just keeping the books, but doing a lot to benefit the community,” Morr said. Orenstein is the faculty advisor for the Investment Club, leads an Intersession course teaching students about personal finance, and has taken students on trips working with Habitat for Humanity.
Despite clearly going above and beyond for the AOF community, Orenstein was still very surprised to hear his name called to receive an award. “I’m humbled,” he said. “I’ve been going to NBOA conferences for years, so I know what this award represents, and I’m honored to receive it.”
For Orenstein, he feels he’s just one part of a group of faculty and staff who are truly committed to creating the best school for boys. “I think everyone who works here believes in the mission. They’re bought in. It’s rewarding in itself to be a part of it.”
The National Business Officers Association (NBOA) is the only national nonprofit membership association dedicated to developing, delivering and promoting best business practices to advance independent schools. The association supports more than 1,500 member schools from the United States and 25 other countries around the globe. NBOA offers national conferences, online professional development, original research and an award-winning magazine.