Frank Blake, former Home Depot CEO, receives Lifetime Achievement Award

By Maria Saporta

The former CEO from the Home Depot, Frank Blake, on Tuesday received the 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award in Leadership Character at a luncheon at the Georgia Aquarium.

The award was given by the Turknett Leadership Group and the Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership. The organizations also recognized a host of other leaders during the Twelfth Leadership Character Awards.

This year’s top award recipients were:

  • Janet Barnard, president of Cox Automotive Inventory Solutions, in the Large Company Category;
  • Tom Beaty, CEO of Insight Sourcing, in the Small-Medium Company Category;
  • Mary Ellen Garrett, a senior vice president for Wealth Management at Merrill Lynch, in the Executive Manager Category;
  • Kim Bearden, a founder of the Ron Clark Academy, in the Education Category;
  • Frantz Fortune, executive director of the Veterans Empowerment Organization (VEO), in the Nonprofit Category; and
  • Edward J. “Jack” Hardin, partner and executive committee member of Rogers & Hardin, in the “Inspiritor” Category.

Also, Jose De La Cruz, human resources director for Travelers; and Myrna Garcia, director of Strategy Account Management and Business Development for INROADS Inc., received a special recognition for Successful Board-Staff Partnership.

Turknett

Left to right: Frank Blake, Liz Blake, Lyn and Bob Turknett – attending annual awards event on Oct. 4, 2016 (Photo by Maria Saporta)

Frank Blake received the Lifetime Leadership Award for exemplifying “the highest standards of character, integrity, and servant leadership over a lifetime of organizational service and service to the larger community.”

He served as chairman and CEO of the Home Depot from January 2007 through November, 2014, and he remained as chairman through January, 2015. He joined the company in 2002. Blake serves on the board of Delta Air Lines, Proctor & Gamble and Macy’s. He chairs the board of Grady Hospital. And he is on the board of the Georgia Aquarium and Agnes Scott College,

Blake was introduced by his wife, Liz Blake, who spoke of his dedication to his job and how he would get up at 5 a.m. on Saturday mornings to go get training in different departments at the Home Depot.

Since 2003, the Turknett Leadership Character Awards have recognized Georgia leaders who demonstrate character in leadership based on alignment with the Leadership Character Model, a model developed by Bob and Lyn Turknett in 1995. The model represents character as a scale with integrity as the base and respect and responsibility balanced on either side. The awards were presented under the auspices of the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership, a nonprofit with international reach.

Turknett

Top award recipients in each category were selected by the five-person Advisory Board. The 2016 Advisory Board included: Ann Cramer, senior consultant with Coxe Curry & Associates; Tom Crawford, owner of Crawford Corporate Coaching; David Ratcliffe, former president, and CEO of Southern Co.; Conchita Robinson, president and CEO of C Robinson Associates, Inc.; Ann Stallard, partner with Oxford Center for Entrepreneurs; and Dr. Betty Siegel, president emeritus of Kennesaw State University, as an advisor emeritus.

The Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership was founded in 1964. It is an international nonprofit organization that serves students, individuals, workplaces and the community by growing servant-leaders through education and programming.

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.

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