Ferris College of Business professor honored with Educator of the Year award

BIG RAPIDS – Ferris State University faculty member, Graphics Communications professor John Conati, was recently named 2013-14 Educator of the Year by the Printing Industries of Michigan in collaboration with five Detroit area graphic-related clubs.

ferris educator of year

AWARD: Professor John Conati (left), of Ferris’ School of Business, receives his Educator of the Year award at a celebration for National Print Week, the annual Ben Franklin Award Dinner in Livonia on Jan. 14. (Courtesy photo)

The award, which was given to Conati as part of a celebration of National Print Week, was presented at the annual Ben Franklin Award Dinner in Livonia on Jan. 14. Nearly 260 graphic professionals attended the dinner.

“Every year they nominate an Individual of the Year and an Educator of the Year,” Conati explained. “The Individual of the Year is someone who is instrumental to advancing our industry, while the Educator of the Year award is given to an industrial trainer or educator in graphic communications who they deem worthy.”

Mike Medved, Michigan Print Week coordinator, served as the event’s master of ceremonies. During the presentation of the award, Medved highlighted that Conati demonstrated a true passion for giving knowledge to students to benefit the industry.

“I think that John Conati has earned this honor through his education reputation and service to our industry,” Medved said, during the ceremony.

Conati’s longtime friend and colleague, a faculty member in Ferris’ College of Business, Pat Klarecki, presented the award. Conati’s family, friends and a few Ferris students attended the dinner to honor him.

Conati, who has worked at Ferris since 1990, felt honored and humbled by the experience when he was told of his nomination.

“When I read the inscription on this plaque, it occurred to me that one might think of this award as an individual honor, but I recognize this as an achievement of all the people in my life who have influenced me throughout my career,” he said at the ceremony.

Conati attributes his award to the people who have educated him throughout the duration of his career, as well as his students at Ferris.

“I was extremely honored,” Conati confirmed. “It’s a pretty prestigious award in our industry. My favorite part of teaching is working with the students and getting to talk to them after they have graduated, seeing their successes. That’s probably the most rewarding part for me.”

Other individuals were honored at the event held at Laurel Manor. Harry Brookes, of ArborOakland, was named Individual of the Year, and Graphics East, Inc., was named Corporation of the Year.

To learn more about Ferris’ Graphic Communications program, visit ferris.edu.

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Posted by Elizabeth Badovinac

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