Cathy Holden Excellence in Managerial Leadership Award

Cathy Holden Excellence in Managerial Leadership Award

Award description

The Cathy Holden Excellence in Managerial Leadership Award honors a high-level employee of a member organization who has made an impact on, contribution to, or led staff in the pursuit of organizational excellence.  The award was renamed in August 2018 to honor the passing of Cathy Holden, Senior Vice President of Rehabilitation and Clinical Operations at NewView Oklahoma, who was the first recipient of the award.


The recipient of the Cathy Holden Excellence in Managerial Leadership Award must be employed by a current member of VisionServe Alliance.  This recipient must show exemplary organizational and professional leadership over the course of at least five years in directing departments and/or programs, expanding impact, developing best practices, streamlining processes, research and/or publications specific to vision loss and/or blindness, developing innovations, etc.  It is hoped that the nominee’s contributions have also been significant at a local, regional, and/or national level.


Nominations for this award must be made by the Executive Director/CEO of the nominee’s organization and supported by the following documents:

  1. A letter of nomination signed by the Executive Director/CEO that addresses the nominee’s outstanding leadership contributions and the significance of his or her contributions to services to individuals with vision loss.
  2. A maximum of 2 support letters from any professional source that speak to the nominee’s leadership and significance of contributions.
  3. Nominees should act in accordance with VisionServe’s Code of Ethics. Nominators should review the VSA Code of Ethics Policy at this link.

Selection of the recipient of the Cathy Holden Excellence in Managerial Leadership Award will be based on a majority vote by the VisionServe Alliance Board of Directors and presented during the Awards Dinner at the VSA annual conference. 

Link to application form Receipt deadline for all 2024 nominations is February 17, 2024.

List of previous winners


Cathy Holden

NewView Oklahoma

2015 – 2017

None awarded


Laura Park-Leach

Metrolina Association f/t Blind


Rod Haneline

Leader Dogs for the Blind


Jaclyn Borchardt

Beyond Vision

Leslie Montgomery

Blind & Vision Rehabilitation Services of Pittsburgh


None awarded


Brooks Harken

ABVI – South Carolina

Kathy Mullen

VIPS – Visually Impaired PreSchool Services


None awarded