Dr. Matt Franz, Clark State Community College vice president of information technology & emergency management, has been selected for the comSpark Tech Power Player Award.
The comSpark Tech Power Player Award is given to the leading CIOs, CTOs, CISOs and other senior-level IT executives. This award celebrates the leadership of executives in both public and privately-held companies, as well as leading non-profits and government institutions. The Tech Power Player designation represents leadership excellence in technology.
Franz is a first-time recipient of the award and also the first from Clark State to be selected. He said he is humbled by the honor and credits the entire IT team.
“IT works really hard. The harder we work, the less people know; in general, success in IT means very few problems,” said Franz. “IT is collaborative. It is an accelerator, not a driver. We take great ideas and try to use technology to meet that need.”
Franz has been with Clark State for six years and said shared governance and gaining feedback makes IT a unique department in higher education.
“Shared governance isn’t asking for permission, it’s gaining perspective and buy-in,” said Franz. “The things we do here affect everyone in the college. When you have a major technology project, obtaining feedback and buy-in ahead of time is critical. That shared decision making gives us a lot of success.”
Franz is also a firm believer in mentorship. “You need to experience other people’s perspective. I believe that is best done through mentorship,” he said. “Not only to have a mentor but to also be a mentor. It’s essential to gain those pieces of wisdom from others and then share with others. Leaders build leaders, and leaders are not necessarily always supervisors. Everyone has the ability to lead from whatever position they may have at that time.”
Franz’s favorite day of every year is commencement. He said he enjoys seeing the students’ faces when they walk across the stage and to know his team played a role in their success, even if it was behind the scenes.
“We had a small role in changing that person’s life,” said Franz. “And that may change a whole generation.”
In 2015 Franz was nominated for the IT Executive of the Year Leadership Award from Technology First, and in 2017 was accepted into the competitive-entry Executive Leadership Institute (ELI).
“Dr. Matt Franz exemplifies the values of Clark State Community College: he works tirelessly to ensure that our students are successful,” said Dr. Jo Alice Blondin, president of Clark State. “Since coming to Clark State, Dr. Franz’s impact on students can be seen throughout the campus. He has improved the student experience immeasurably through technology.”
Franz and Blondin will attend the Dayton comSpark Tech Power Player Awards ceremony on Wednesday, September 25.