By Richard Curtis
At its 50th anniversary commencement ceremony, Cincinnati State Technical and Community College presented Barbara A. Turner, president and chief operating officer at Ohio National Financial Services, with an honorary degree on Sunday, August 9.
“Mrs. Turner has been an inspiration for others through her extraordinary career and a life dedicated to assisting individuals to seek and pursue their true calling with an emphasis on workforce training and experiential learning,” said Dr. Monica Posey, president of Cincinnati State.
“Cincinnati State shares these values, and it is fitting that the College honor her achievements on this day. Despite the many demands that come with leading a major corporation, she serves on the Cincinnati State Board of Trustees and is co-chair of our 50th Anniversary celebration. We are truly grateful for Mrs. Turner’s commitment and generosity.”
Highly active and focused on service to improve our community, Turner is also the vice chair and chair-elect of the United Way of Greater Cincinnati Board of Directors, while holding a number of other community positions. She believes that communities are stronger when each member has the opportunity for education and financial security.
“This is an incredible honor for me,” says Turner. “I believe that education and financial literacy bring freedom, flexibility, independence and hope. Cincinnati State offers that to its students, and I’m humbled to be honored by them for my role in helping improve the quality of life for all in our community.”
Turner is also a trailblazer in her industry. She is the first female and person of color to hold her current position at Ohio National and the first female in the United States to complete the FINRA/Wharton Certified Regulatory Compliance Professional (CRCP) program.
“Barbara is a tremendous leader and champion for women and minorities in our industry,” says Gary T. ‘Doc’ Huffman, chairman and chief executive officer, Ohio National. “Not only has she taken our organization to greater heights, I’ve also seen her tireless dedication to our community in action. With vision and drive to take decisive action, she ignites meaningful change to improve the lives of others. We are very proud of Barbara at Ohio National and happy to see her recognized in this way.”
Honorary degrees are bestowed on individuals in the community who reflect the college’s mission or values. Past degree recipients include: Marian Spencer, John Pepper, Mamie Earl Sells, among others.