Bob Fortney, a senior consultant in the Kentucky Department of Education’s (KDE’s) Office of District 180, is the recipient of the 2012 Kentucky Society for Technology in Education (KySTE) Outstanding Leader award, which will be presented at the KySTE spring conference March 9 in Louisville.

Each year, KySTE presents awards for outstanding leader, teacher and technology staff member, based on their work and achievement in the education technology area. State-level winners’ names are submitted to the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) for consideration of national-level recognition.

Fortney, a resident of Lexington, was nominated by Tara Rodriguez, a teacher liaison for the Kentucky Virtual High School in the KDE Division of Student Success. In her nomination, Rodriguez noted Fortney has a belief that online or blended learning can improve the educational experience for students from all backgrounds, abilities and talents.

“He also envisions the possibilities that individualized digital learning can offer to disengaged students or those who attend failing schools,” said Rodriguez. “Bob’s enthusiasm for digital learning is evident in his work, his professional associations and in his communication with colleagues and parents.”

Fortney has worked closely with the Kentucky Virtual High School, the federal Ready to Teach program, the Continuous Instructional Improvement Technology System (CIITS) project and other digital learning projects.

The KySTE Outstanding Leader award is presented to individuals who have had a significant positive impact on technology use in education locally, regionally, statewide, nationally or worldwide. Award-winners’ work is used as a model for others in the education technology area.

KySTE, based in Frankfort, is a state-level organization whose mission is to empower the educational community in the Commonwealth of Kentucky to infuse technology as an integral part of the educational process through advocacy and leadership, promoting educational excellence and supporting technology-based innovation.