BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — In the three years since voters approved a $44.2 million bond issue to fund improvements to Anthony Wayne Local Schools facilities, Operations Director Matt Dick has taken on a new role – representing the district in multiple construction projects from design to completion.
On Monday, October 7, Dick will be recognized with the General’s Award, while the entire Operations Department received the Classified Staff Members of the Year Award.
Walking through the high school last week, Dick pointed out the new gymnasium and compliant restrooms, renovated auxiliary gym and weight room, new science classrooms and spacious commons area overlooking the baseball field. As construction crews pushed to finish most of the work on the high school, junior high and middle schools – which received new secure entryways and renovated offices – the Operations team was just as busy, Dick said.
“They put in a lot of extra hours. They all dealt with a lot of dust, repeated cleaning, working around contractors and re-cleaning. It was quite a mess in a lot of places. With doors propped open, it can’t be avoided,” Dick said. “It was really tough and stressful. There were times when it looked like things were not going to be ready in time.”
Operations supervisors John Dobson, Laura Myerholtz and Brian Sroczynski and secretary Marlene Rood, along with the entire staff, took over portions of Dick’s work while he worked with the general contractor over the past few years.
Just a few projects are left to wrap up. Within the week, the office staffs of the junior high and middle school should move into new offices. The electric main at Fallen Timbers will be changed over Thanksgiving weekend. Whitehouse Primary School’s new 68,490-square-foot facility is expected to be complete in time for a winter break move-in.
As he stood in the new high school cafeteria, Dick pointed out the synthetic terrazzo floor with blue, white, gray and flecks of mirror.
“This is the flooring throughout Whitehouse Primary,” he said.
As operations director, Dick oversees every aspect of facilities, including custodial services, security, energy management, delivery, grounds and athletic fields. A 1981 Anthony Wayne graduate, he spent 21 years in the Air National Guard, Civil Engineering, wrapping up his career as a first sergeant and in charge of operations.
While in the service, he took classes in the Community College of the Air Force, earning an environmental technology two-year degree, and then finished his bachelor’s degree in geology at The University of Toledo. After graduation, Dick worked for Toledo Testing’s Environmental Consulting Inc., doing asbestos consulting, including in schools. He founded DMD Environmental Inc., and later sold the business before joining Anthony Wayne Local Schools.