In recognition of his long service and deep commitment to Genesee Community College, Board of Trustees Chairman Charles R. Ruffino received the Marvin A. Rapp Award for Distinguished Service on Sept. 22, at the annual conference of the New York Community College Trustees Association.
The award was established by the New York State Community College Trustees Association in 1986 to acknowledge longstanding and exemplary trustee service. Mr. Ruffino's affiliation with GCC dates back to 2002, when he was appointed by the governor as a GCC trustee.
During his tenure, Mr. Ruffino served as a board liaison to the College Foundation Board of Trustees and served on numerous committees that address student housing, the foundation's risk-management program, and new academic program development. He also participated in numerous presentations delivered at national conferences.
As chairman of the board for the past three years, Mr. Ruffino stayed abreast of the key financial issues that impact higher education to ensure the college meets its goals without compromising the quality of its programs and services.
He has been instrumental in nurturing key relationships with the college's sponsor, the Genesee County Legislature, and with various community partnerships, including the Genesee County Economic Development Center and local school districts.
He spearheaded the construction of the Roz Steiner Art Gallery at the Batavia Campus Center and the successful lease of the former Dansville Middle School for the recent relocation of the Dansville Campus Center. Mr. Ruffino also guided the board and the institution through the successful search for a new college president.
"Most times, trustees serve for two years, but Mr. Ruffino was elected to a third year term as chairman because of the high regard and respect the other trustees have for him and his leadership," GCC President James Sunser said in nominating Mr. Ruffino for the Rapp Award and highlighting his service to the college.
Mr. Ruffino is a retired administrator for the NYS School for the Blind and current member of the school's Board of Visitors. He actively served the community as a member of the Batavia School District Board of Education, as a city councilman, and as a Genesee County legislator. He and his his wife, Janet, reside in Batavia, where they enjoy spending time with their son, two daughters and four grandchildren.
Upon completion of his term on the board at the end of June of this year, the Genesee Board of Trustees unanimously named Mr. Ruffino a Trustee Emeritus in honor of his outstanding service and commitment to the college and students.