Waterbury, Conn. - Catherine N. Awwad, executive director of the Northwest Regional Workforce Investment Board (NRWIB), will receive this year’s Board of Trustees Merit Award at the College’s commencement ceremony, to be held at 6 pm on Thursday, May 27, at the Palace Theater.
Awwad has contributed greatly to education and workforce development in the region, including a community college-based, in-school and out-of-school youth program that enables more than 50 urban students to attend NVCC each year.
“Cathy lives and breathes Waterbury and is a huge supporter of the city, particularly its youth,” said Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D., NVCC president. “Her contributions to education and workforce development and her commitment to the advancement of our College make her an exemplary choice. We are very blessed for the opportunity to work with her.”
Awwad has partnered with NVCC in developing new programs to meet the needs of the Waterbury community and its youth. She facilitated the coordination and ongoing development of an early childhood development program between Waterbury high schools and NVCC and helped the College implement an advanced manufacturing technology program known as “College Connections.”
Most recently, Awwad has worked with NVCC’s Workforce and Industry Training division to found a welding certificate program in response to a local workforce shortage. Seventeen students graduated from the program in March.
“Cathy has contributed much to workforce development in the entire region and has had an exceptional professional career in the Waterbury area,” said De Filippis.
Between 1993 and 2000, Awwad served on the Board of Alderman in Waterbury and later became chief of staff for the Mayor’s Office. As executive director of NWRIB, Awwad leads the administration of state and federal job training programs for 41 cities and towns in the northwest region of the state. She plans, develops and implements programming to meet the needs of employers and employees and also manages procurement and coordination of service-provider contracts to ensure seamless delivery of workforce programs.
Awwad currently serves on various boards and committees for Waterbury Development Corporation, Waterbury Regional Chamber, St. Mary’s Hospital, Naugatuck Valley Development Corporation, Connecticut Pharmacist’s Association and the Overlook Community Club/Sports Association.