The Centralia College Board of Trustees will formally dedicate the center of campus as Ward Plaza at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 17, on the plaza (or in the TransAlta Commons if it rains). This event is free and open to all; refreshments will be served.
Expected to speak at the dedication ceremony are Jim Lowery, Centralia College board chairman, former college Presidents Dr. Hank Kirk and Dr. Jim Walton, Andy Rovelstad, architect of the TransAlta Commons, Peter Abarrno, Centralia College Foundation president, and Meghan Ward, Steve Ward’s daughter.
The honor is in recognition of Steve Ward’s vision, perseverance, and dedication in making Centralia College a campus that truly reflects the college’s mission.
Ward began at Centralia College as a student in 1972. A non-traditional student, he was the first in his family to attend college. He picked away at it part-time over five years, working to pay his way through. He went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in accounting and economics from St. Martins University and master’s degree in Public Administration from The Evergreen State College. He later worked in the State Auditor’s Office, as a CPA and in public accounting, and in upper administration at the university level before returning to Centralia College in 1993. Ward is the vice president of finance and administration.
“I am humbled and honored by the recognition given by the Board of Trustees, and especially about the Plaza, since it is the center of the college and was once a public street bisecting the campus,” said Ward. “However, the campus as it exists today is the work of many people at the college, past and present, and I wish to acknowledge all that had a hand in the campus growth. None of this would have been possible without a team of people committed to helping build a college that our community, internal and external, can point to with pride.”