The Fred award seeks to honor an individual who exudes a Fred-like spirit of service, innovation, and commitment to others, positively influencing and impacting the lives of those in the school community. Make plans to help us show our Freds how great they are!

Fred Award Guidelines

Got Fred? If so, KASA's Awards Committee invites you to nominate this extraordinary individual for the association's annual Fred Award.

Inspired by well-known author Mark Sanborn, the award is named in honor of Fred Shea, the subject of Sanborn's national bestseller, The Fred Factor. Nominations for this distinctive award should embody the four principles described in the book - an individual who chooses to make a positive difference each day, has a heart for people, changes ordinary moments into memorable ones, and leads by example. If this sounds like someone in your district, then you've got Fred.


Click here for application


Non-administrative staff, or volunteers are eligible for the Fred Award. This includes classified support staff (i.e. bus drivers, custodians, cafeteria workers, instructional assistants, etc.), students, parents, community volunteers, etc. School nurses and school resource officers are eligible for this award providing they are employed by the school district.

Award nominees should possess a trademark spirit of service, innovation and commitment to others in a way that positively impacts the lives of those in the school community. Nominees who received this award within the last ten years are ineligible to be nominated a second time. They, however, may be nominated for other KASA Awards.


  • Applications accepted through March 25
  • Note: Only one applicant per school district will be accepted.
  • Award nominations may be submitted by any KASA member. Nominations must be submitted on the official application.
  • A maximum of three additional pages of supporting materials may be submitted to enhance the application. New this year - supporting materials may be submitted in video format. Video should be uploaded to web-based platform (YouTube, Vimeo, Google Drive, etc.) and the link should be included on the application. Video length should be a maximum of 4 minutes. 

Award Selection, Notification & Recognition

  • Three Fred finalists will be selected and announced in April 2024 by a statewide judging panel comprised of KASA member representatives.
  • A film crew will visit each finalist in May to learn more about the nominee and how he or she exudes Fred like qualities in the school district each day. Footage will be compiled into a short video, shown at the summer institute to a large audience prior to the winner being announced. The video will also be used on KASA’s website, and the recipient will be recognized in KASA’s award publications and other media.
  • Finalists will be recognized at KASA’s leadership institute, at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, where the two finalists will receive a commemorative award and $250 monetary gift. The 2024 Fred recipient will be announced as a culminating activity of the institute on July 26, 2024, at which time he or she will receive a commemorative award and $500 monetary gift.
  • Nominees not chosen for the award will be recognized via KASA’s newsletter and website at

Submitting a Nomination

Complete the application and forward to the KASA office as follows:

Submit Electronically:
Press the Submit Electronically button on the PDF form. (Note: if using this option, you will also need to print page 1, sign and fax to (502) 875-4634.

IMPORTANT MESSAGE: If using Chrome or FireFox, you must first save pdf to your computer, then close browser and re-open saved file to complete and submit.

Mail to:
Leadership Awards Program
87 C. Michael Davenport Blvd
Frankfort, KY 40601

Fax to:
(502) 875-4634
Address cover sheet to Leadership Awards Program.

Note: Nomination packet must include application, letters of recommendation, and any supporting materials.

Miscellaneous Notes

  • All applications become the property of KASA. No material will be returned unless requested by the nominator.
  • When completing the application, please write clearly and give specific examples as to how the nominee has accomplished or addressed a particular criteria area. (Example: “Jane Smith contributes to the effectiveness of the administrative team by contacting each individual prior to a team meeting, ensuring their attendance and their participation relative to assignments previously made.”)

Applications not submitted in accordance with the stated guidelines will be disqualified.

2023 Fred Award Winner
Mahlon Thomas
Carlisle County Schools


Previous Years

2008 Fred Strange, Campbell County

2009 Brenda Sorrell, Montgomery County

2010 Ronald Shoulta, Paducah Independent

2011 Rick Branham, Pike County

2012 John Foote, Monroe County

2013 Danny Henderson, Carlisle County

2014 Bruce Bell, Union County

2015 Marvin McHenry, Carter County

2016 Kenneth Kelly, Daviess County

2017 Kathy Fryman, Augusta Independent

2018 Rita Renfrow, Butler County

2019 Angela Shoemaker, Muhlenberg County

2020 Melvin Bell, LaRue County

2021 Daniel Lyne, Daviess County

2022 Danny Fugett, Ashland Independent
2023 Mahlon Thomas, Carlisle County

Other Leadership Awards

Administrator of the Year

Distinguished Service Award

Fred Award

Superintendent of the Year Award

William T. Nallia Award