The I.E. Ready Award is the highest honor bestowed by the State Board of Community Colleges. The award was created in 1983 to recognize individuals who have made significant, statewide contributions to the establishment, development or enhancement of the North Carolina Community College System. The award is named for the late Issac Epps Ready, who was the first state director (the position is now the system president) of the North Carolina Community College System.
This year's recipient is Dr. Phail Wynn, Jr.
Dr. Wynn served as President of Durham Technical Community College from 1980 - 2007 and now serves as Duke University’s Vice President for Durham and Rregional Affairs.
From his community college beginnings as assistant to the president at what was then Durham Technical Institute through 30 years of visionary leadership, Dr. Wynn has worked tirelessly with students, faculty and administrators; championed community colleges on the local, regional and state levels; served on local and state chambers of commerce; and pushed Durham Tech into alternative educational delivery methods before they became the norm.
A native of Wewoka, Oklahoma, Dr. Wynn earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1969. He served as an officeer in the U.S. Army with both the 82nd Airborne Division and John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center at Fort Bragg, including a tour in the Republic of Vietnam. As a part-time student at North Carolina State University, Dr. Wynn completed his master’s degree at the College of Education and Psychology in 1974, and after resigning from the Army, accepted a fellowship to pursue his doctorate in the same field at NC State, accomplishing that goal in 1977. Additionally, he earned a Master of Business Administration from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Wynn received the Order of the Long Leaf Pine from Governor Jim Hunt in 2000.