As a member of Omicron Delta Kappa I have the distinct honor and privilege of presenting the 2015 “All Together One” award to Dr. William C. Wood. Dr. Wood has been a member of the James Madison University community for 25 years, all of which he spent aiming to better the JMU & surrounding Harrisonburg communities in as many ways as possible. Dr. Wood is not only a professor of economics, but he also serves as director of the Center for Economic education. He goes above and beyond in all that he does & tirelessly works to benefit not only James Madison University, but always reaches out to help others around him in need.

If you ask one of Dr. Wood’s students, they would tell you that he always puts the success of his students before anything else. One of the important aspects of the All Together One Award is “inspiring others”, and Dr. Wood is an exceptional model of this in the JMU community. He is willing to help students outside of class one-on-one so that he can help them achieve their future goals and see them prosper. As his nomination said, Dr. Wood’s caring attitude begins with his students and continues through the community.

Outside of the classroom and the James Madison University community, Dr. Wood focuses much of his time caring for local grade schools as well as the special needs community. His nominator writes; “he has served for years as a resource to the Rockingham County Schools on meeting the needs of students with autism. Every Sunday he leads Song & Story Time for special needs adults at his home church, and has led in-home and hospital visitation through his work as chair of the Deacon Board.”

His passion for building community does not stop there, though. As director of the Center for Economic Education, Dr. Wood has brought in generous amounts of grant money to combine with JMU resources to benefit local K-12 schools in the Rockingham County Area. He is also a supporter and advocate of literacy among English Language Learners in the local community & received the distinguished leadership award for support of literacy in the central Shenandoah Valley from the Skyline Literacy Coalition in 2007.

Dr. Wood furthers his commitment to building community by encouraging faculty and students to work together to co-author scholarly research. His nomination notes that at last count, he had published scholarly papers with 16 coauthors, four of which were students or former students. Dr. Wood team-teaches whenever he sees fit & his collaborative approach has led to significant honors for the Center of Economic Education and its staff. Dr. Wood constantly supports and encourages those around him to be the best versions of themselves, often putting the needs of others before his own.

As his nominator says, “Dr. Wood sees economics, properly applied, as a way of helping people who might otherwise be left behind in society.” He is dedicated to helping those around him whether it be his students, staff, or others in the community. Dr. Wood does this by having a regular interest for always learning more, so that he can use his knowledge to benefit others. When he finds new ideas or economic policies, he is always enthusiastic to bring them into the classroom so that he can help his students to make a difference in our community as well. Dr. Wood has received numerous awards for his teaching including: The Best 300 Professors (nationally, awarded by the Princeton Review), the Southern Economic Association’s highest award (the Kenneth G. Elzinga award), and the Great Teachers in Economics series administered by Florida State University.

The All Together One award focuses on one or more of 6 principles: building community, inspiring others, a caring attitude, dedication to learning, commitment to working together, and unique contributions. Dr. Wood is an exemplary role model for all of these qualities and is a true inspiration. His 25 years of dedication to serving the JMU and surrounding communities, is truly commendable. On behalf of the members of Omicron Delta Kappa, and the JMU community, I am honored to present one of the 2015 All Together One Award to Dr. William C. Wood.

Written by: Rachel Phillips

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