Board of Education trustee Ronald Ellerbe has been named the New York State School Boards Association Advocate of the Year for his longstanding dedication to public education and his tireless efforts on behalf of students. This statewide award is presented to an individual school board member from New York State for outstanding contributions to public education, children and community through advocacy efforts at the state and/or national levels. The advocacy award was presented to Mr. Ellerbe on March 16 during the Capital Conference in Albany.
"Ron is recognized as an effective advocate for children, and it has been his tireless mission to maintain relationships with legislators and to cultivate a keen awareness of the needs of the children of New York,” said Tim Kremer, executive director of NYSSBA.
Mr. Ellerbe’s name has become synonymous with both advocacy and Freeport. He has served the children and families of Freeport as a member of the Board of Education for 18 years, as vice president from 2006 to 2008, and as president from 2000 to 2001. Mr. Ellerbe chairs the Board’s Legislative, Budget and Safety committees. Recently, he was appointed to the Commissioner’s Roundtable representing NYSSBA.
Mr. Ellerbe is widely known and highly regarded on Long Island. Local school districts elected him to the Nassau BOCES Board, on which he has served since 2007. He is a member of the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association Executive Board and is currently vice chairman of the NYSSBA’s Finance Committee. He is also a member and past president of the Reform Education Finance Inequities Today (REFIT) Executive Committee. In recognition of his contributions to education on Long Island, he was a recipient of the 60 Over Sixty Award, presented by School Business Partnerships of Long Island. Mr. Ellerbe’s contributions to the broader community were recognized by the Freeport Council of PTAs, which awarded him an honorary lifetime membership for his service to parents and children. His service to his community extends to the entire Village of Freeport, where he has been elected to the Village Board of Trustees.
“I know Mr. Ellerbe truly exemplifies the personal and professional qualities that are honored through this award,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kishore Kuncham. "Our elected officials understand that he is a fierce advocate, and they have a great respect for his knowledge and insight.”
Mr. Ellerbe is retired from a highly respected career in law enforcement. He is a graduate of Fordham University and holds a master's degree in public administration from LIU Post. He also holds a Master of Boardsmanship from NYSSBA.