COLUMBUS, Ohio — Jeff Vrabel Sr., chief of transportation for Youngstown (Ohio) City Schools, has been named the 2012 “Outstanding Transportation Director of the Year” by a state organization.
The award, given out by the Ohio Association of School Business Officials’ (OASBO) Foundation for School Business Management, also provides a $500 college scholarship for a high school senior, sponsored by American Fidelity Assurance Co.
Vrabel completed 15 years of service to the Columbiana County Educational Service Center (ESC) and community before accepting his current position at Youngstown City Schools. At the ESC, he spearheaded several initiatives to streamline operations, including computerizing the routing system to improve efficiency, writing grants for federal funding, updating communication devices, implementing a recycling program, and training and evaluating bus drivers.
Vrabel has been a member of OASBO’s professional development strategic planning committee, helping to create professional development programs for all Ohio school business officials.
Officials said that Vrabel is generous with his time on transportation association boards. He is currently president-elect of the Ohio Association for Pupil Transportation. He is past president of the Columbiana County Transportation Supervisors Association, a member of the National Association for Pupil Transportation and a former member of the Ohio Department of Education’s Parent Advisory Council.
“Our members are the key players responsible annually for millions of public dollars within school districts,” OASBO Executive Director David Varda said. “Their successes and contributions to their profession, their districts and their communities are often a well-kept secret, so we’re excited to be able to formally recognize them through this awards program. We’re also very pleased that these awards give back — providing college scholarships for students.”
Officials also pointed to Vrabel’s service to his community. He is a commander for the Sons of the American Legion. For the past three years, he has been the chairman of the Memorial Day parade and memorial ceremonies in Poland, Ohio. In 2011, he was named the Citizen of the Year for service to veterans and Americanism by the United Veterans Council of Greater Youngstown.
Vrabel also serves as a football and basketball referee and has dedicated his time to many youth sports associations. He also volunteers for the Special Olympics.