Fielding Graduate University alumnus Victor Chears, EdD, will receive the William McCormick Blair Distinguished Service Award from the Yale Club of Chicago on October 24th, 2012.
The award is presented to a Chicago-area alumnus or alumna who has made significant contributions to the welfare of Yale and the Chicago community.
Victor graduated from Yale University in 1974 and for nearly 40 years has served his alma mater with distinction and devotion. Among his many contributions, Victor spent eight years in volunteer service to the Association of Yale Alumni (AYA) as a delegate, an elected member of its Board of Governors, and as an executive officer. He chaired the board of the Afro-American Cultural Center at Yale and was co-chair of its 35th anniversary celebration in 2004. Victor is a former president of the Yale Club of Chicago. Currently he serves on the Board of the Yale Club of Chicago Foundation, as a strategic advisor to the Yale Club of Chicago, and as Chair of the National Advisory Council to the Yale Black Alumni Association. In addition, he has interviewed applicants to Yale for more than 30 years.
After receiving his BA from Yale, Victor earned a doctorate in Education (EdD) from Fielding Graduate University (ELC '09), where he focused on grounded theory, communications and capacity building theories. His dissertation, “Taking A Stand For Others: A Grounded Theory,” focused on strategies related to investing in and empowering others. These insights were formed over a long and successful career as a strategist and management consultant. In the past three decades since starting his consultancy, Chears & Associates, Victor has assisted a wide-range of organizations, focusing on leadership; capacity-building and vision; organizational analysis and development; program analysis; strategic planning; team building; executive transition management, succession and search; and human capital development. His clients have ranged from small nonprofits to Fortune 500 companies. Because of his established track record, he is a sought out coach, trainer, mentor, consultant, confidant, and advisor to the leaders of complex organizations and participates in a variety of boards, committees, and initiatives.
In recognition of his efforts, Victor received the Yale Medal in 2007. Inaugurated in 1952, the Yale Medal is the highest award presented by the AYA and is conferred solely to recognize and honor outstanding individual service to the University. Since its inception, the Yale Medal has been presented to fewer than 300 individuals, all of whom not only showed extraordinary devotion to the ideals of the University, but also were conspicuous in demonstrating their support of Yale through extensive, exemplary voluntary service on behalf of Yale as a whole or one of its many schools, institutes, or programs.
Victor currently serves on the Fielding Alumni Council and is an active volunteer and strong believer in being involved in one’s communities. He has five children, three grandchildren, and lives in Chicago with his wife and supporter, Kevin.