State Support Team Region 9 Serving Schools in Holmes, Stark, and Wayne Counties

Stark State Advanced Technology Center ~ 6057 Strip Ave. N.W., North Canton, OH 44720  
Telephone: 330-492-8136  ~  Toll Free: 1-800-733-7732

Dr. Karen M. Williams Leadership Award

Presented at the Annual Conference for Family and Educators of Children with Diverse Learning Needs

SST9 will be honoring an educational leader in our region who exemplifies the qualities displayed by our friend and colleague, Dr. Karen Williams. We welcome nominees who exhibit dedication to excellence in education for ALL students.

PURPOSE OF THE AWARD To honor a leader whose efforts have improved the quality of education and opportunities for students.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE Professionals in education, the community, business or non profit organizations within Wayne, Holmes and Stark counties.


2019 Dr. Karen M. Williams Leadership Award
Jennifer Crum

Jennifer Crum is the 2019 recipient of the Dr. Karen M. Williams Leadership Award, presented by Karen’s colleagues at the State Support Team Region 9 and her two daughters, Heather Massarelli and Kelly Winters.

Ms. Crum received a Bachelor of Science in Education from Bowling Green State University and earned a Masters Degree in Education Administration from Ashland University. Jennifer began her educational career as a teacher of students in a crosscategorical inclusion program with Conotton Valley Local Schools and then with Brown Local Schools. She continued teaching students with learning disabilities and taught students with multiple disabilities in a variety of districts including: Switzerland of Ohio, New Philadelphia City, Cincinnati Public, Erie-Huron-Ottawa Educational Service Center, and Akron Public
Schools. Jennifer served as the District Special Education Supervisor for Alliance City Schools before coming to her current position as Director of Student Services for the Wooster City School District.

Jennifer has a strong presence in professional and community organizations. She belongs to the Ohio Association of Pupil Services Administrators and the National Association of Pupil Services Administrators. She is involved with the Noon Lions Club, the Wayne County Family and Children First Council, the Mental Health Recovery Board, The Village Network, Catholic Charities and Anazao Counseling Services. In addition to facilitating Universal Design for Learning (UDL) professional development and its implementation in Grades 5-12, she has worked to “build trusting relationships with students, staff, family,
and community”, noted Dr. Michael Tefs, the Superintendent of Wooster City Schools. Ms. Crum has been involved in the creation of a behavior support specialist position, incorporating a MRDD classroom into the district, and creating an intervention specialist position around trauma informed students. Professional development to support trauma informed care was provided also. She supports staff in using the Co-Plan to Co-Serve model to improve teaching and to impact student learning.

To emphasize Jennifer’s ability “to collaborate and provide in-house supports”, Superintendent Tefs stated, ”When a recent tragedy took place…it was Jennifer who immediately pulled together the crisis team and implemented counseling services for our staff and students throughout the school day, weekend and days to follow.” He went on to say, “Jennifer’s mission is to positively impact all students, close achievement gaps and meet annual academic growth goals.

The selection of Jennifer Crum as the Dr. Karen M. Williams Leadership Award was ultimately determined by her multilayered work in supporting students with disabilities and “her efforts to embrace diversity and meet the social, emotional, physical and academic needs of all children.”

Congratulations, Jennifer!

Past Recipients of the Dr. Karen M. Williams Leadership Award
2016 – Michael Farmer – Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Center
2017 – Broc Bidlack – Fairless Local Schools
2018 – William Green – Stark County Board of Development Disabilities