October 21, 1999 Geneva, NY – David Craig, professor of chemistry at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, has been selected to receive the 1999 Sam Walton Business Leader Award, sponsored by the Wal-Mart Foundation and the Wal-Mart in Geneva. Craig was chosen as the award recipient by the Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce, which received a $500 grant in Craig's name. Wal-Mart representatives will formally present the award to Craig in a ceremony to be held at 2 p.m. on Thursday, October 28, at the Chamber of Commerce.
Wal-Mart established the Sam Walton Business Leader Award in 1995 to recognize local business people who best exemplify the principles of its founder Sam Walton: respect for the individual, service to customers, and a commitment to strive for excellence.
“David Craig truly exemplifies the principles articulated in the Business Leader Award nomination,” said Vince Scalise, interim president/CEO of the Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce. “He works tirelessly for the betterment of this community and his efforts benefit so many.”
Craig was selected by the Chamber of Commerce to receive this prestigious award because of several projects in which his role was integral. He led the effort to create the first Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce Visitors' Guide and Member Directory, created several internships through which Hobart and William Smith students aid community business and organizations, and offers computer workshops on the HWS campus for area businesses. He has also served as host for the Colleges at two “Business After Hours” events, at which local business people come together to learn more about each other's businesses.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to serve the community through my role on the Geneva Area Chamber of Commerce board of directors. As a parent, my children attended city schools and have worked in local businesses. As a college faculty member, our educational programs have been made stronger by our students' involvement in the Geneva community from teachers-in-training in the local schools to internships in local businesses and governmental agencies,” said Craig. “In this respect, I believe that it is particularly important for our students' education that faculty and staff teach high standards of citizenship and service by example. How else can we be credible to our students in communicating the importance of service? But most of all, it gives me a very nice feeling to be able to give back some of what this community has given to me and to the Colleges.”
Hobart and William Smith Colleges President Mark Gearan added, “David is an outstanding representative for these Colleges. He both speaks to and exemplifies the importance of community service. He provides a model to our students, fueling their appreciation that education bears a responsibility to give back.”
In addition to his community involvement and his teaching duties at the Colleges, Craig has been instrumental in developing the award-winning Alcohol Education Project on the Hobart and William Smith campus. He and his colleague Wes Perkins, professor of sociology, recently received a very competitive grant from the U.S. Department of Education to continue those initiatives, which have led to a significant reduction in alcohol abuse on campus. The program is being modeled at several institutions across the country, and Craig and Perkins are currently working with area high schools to help them establish similar programs.
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