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YPIE Board Member Bud Kroll Receives Volunteer New York! Education & Literacy Award

Bud Kroll, YPIE Board Member, was recognized by Volunteer New York! with their Education & Literacy Award for the extraordinary work he does on behalf of our YPIE students. He received this very meaningful award at their 39th Annual Volunteer Spirit Awards Event.

See Bud's remarks below:

Thank you to Volunteer New York for this gracious recognition and for keeping volunteering front and center. Kudos to the other nominees and award winners for their tremendous efforts.

Yonkers Partners in Education, or YPIE, is an extraordinary organization. We partner with over twelve hundred Yonkers Public School students each year to ensure they are ready for, enroll in, and complete college. Delivering deep and effective services across three major programs with a paid staff of only 24 and a budget of just over $2 million requires leverage. YPIE’s over 200 active volunteers are a critical component of that leverage.

YPIE and I found each other in 2012 when I was a volunteer math teaching assistant at one of the most challenged high schools in Yonkers. In 2014, YPIE’s fabulous Executive Director Wendy Nadel asked me to leave the classroom and devote all my volunteer energy to building data systems for YPIE, ultimately collecting and analyzing that data to help the organization improve student outcomes. Unlike others being honored today, I am not currently a direct service volunteer. I am very grateful that YPIE and Volunteer NY recognize the power of rigorous data analysis.

YPIE’s senior management and Board of Directors devote the focus and intellectual honesty necessary to continually listen to outcome data and use it to leverage our staff and effectively steer the organization. In 2016, the Board spent a full day offsite with our outcome data and made the gutsy call to dramatically expand the YPIE Scholars program to address the need for academic preparation and greater individual student focus. That decision transformed the organization.

YPIE staff has embraced the real-time cloud-based data system I built for them, using it each day to record their interactions with students and analyze each student’s progress to trigger timely and effective interventions. I am delighted that incoming Executive Director Sam Wallis and other staff members are here to today to share this honor.

Rather than walking the well-worn path of bending data to make our organizations look attractive to donors, I would urge each of you to embrace disciplined data analysis for honest, though sometimes uncomfortable, decision making. Your organization, and clients, will benefit.

Finally, a big thank you to my wife Wendie, who has patiently supported my love of public education.

Thank you very much.

Bud Kroll

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