Turknett Leadership Group Announces Third Leadership Character Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

ATLANTA, Georgia (April 16, 2014) – Turknett Leadership Group (TLG) announced that Kent C. “Oz” Nelson, former Chairman and CEO of UPS®, will be the third recipient of the lifetime achievement award for Leadership Character. The award recognizes leaders who exemplify the highest standards of character and integrity over a lifetime of service to an organization and to the larger community.

Mr. Nelson is the retired Chairman and CEO of UPS, a position he held from November 1989 to December 1996. He continued to serve on the Board until 2002 when he stepped down and ended 43 years of service with the company. He was the CEO when UPS moved its headquarters from Greenwich, Connecticut, to Atlanta, Georgia, in 1991, and immediately began active service in the Atlanta community.

Currently serving as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Carter Center, Mr. Nelson continues his long history of community service, which began while he was employed by UPS. He has served on the Boards and Executive Committees of United Way of America, Ball State University Foundation, Jim Casey Youth Opportunity Initiative and the National Museum of Patriotism. He has chaired the Boards of The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Foundation, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta and the UPS Foundation®.  Oz served for ten years as an advisor for the Turknett Leadership Character Awards.

A dedicated advocate for public education, Oz served six years as Chair of the Board of the Kentucky Partnership for School Reform. He chaired the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce Education Committee, served as a member of the National Business Roundtable Policy and Education Committee, and was appointed to the Georgia Governor’s Education Reform Commission.

A native of Kokomo, Indiana, he received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from Ball State University in 1959. He was elected by Ball State to The Business Hall of Fame in 1990 and honored in 1991 with the Distinguished Alumni Award. Oz has received a number of honorary degrees including an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Ball State University. He is the recipient of a number of local and national awards for business leadership and community service.

“No one exemplifies the Leadership Character Model better than Oz Nelson. His integrity is immediately apparent, he is accountable and courageous in everything he commits to, and he lives in a uniformly respectful and humble way,” shares Bob Turknett, CEO, Turknett Leadership Group.

“Oz Nelson is a true servant-leader, living out leadership character qualities that nominal leaders aspire to: putting others’ needs first, growing next-generation leaders, and empowering individuals to reach their fullest potential,”  said Joe Iarroci, CEO, Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership.

“Oz Nelson is the epitome of a global citizen who is the perfect blend of intellect, passion, commitment and integrity. He has become, for so many of us, the icon of a 21st century CEO leader who understands the value of the most important resource that any enterprise has, and that is the human resource, the people! Oz knows what it means to ‘Deliver on his promise.’ His vision, his courageous action, his bold leadership, his perseverance through difficult times and his heart for people have encouraged and empowered many of us to continue the journey,” said Ann Cramer, Senior Consultant, Coxe Curry & Associates.

The Turknett Leadership Character Awards will be presented this year under the auspices of the Robert K. Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership, a national nonprofit dedicated to advancing servant leadership. The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented as part of the 11th Annual Leadership Character Awards luncheon on Wednesday, September 24, 2014. The ceremony will be a part of the 18th Annual Servant Leadership Conference presented by the Greenleaf Center at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Atlanta. Nominations open at www.LeadershipCharacter.org on April 15, 2014. For more information about the conference, visit www.greenleaf.org.

Since 2003, the annual Turknett Leadership Character Awards have recognized Georgia leaders who demonstrate character in leadership based on alignment with the Leadership Character Model™, a model developed by Bob and Lyn Turknett in 1995. The model represents character as a scale with integrity as the base and respect and responsibility balanced on either side. To read about the nominees and winners from previous years, visit   http://www.leadershipcharacter.com.

The Leadership Character Award winners are selected from nominees by an esteemed panel of judges including:

  • Ann Cramer, Senior Consultant with Coxe Curry & Associates and former Director for IBM of Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs
  • Tom Crawford, retired chairman and CEO of Crawford & Company and a 2007 Turknett Leadership Character Award winner
  • David Ratcliffe, retired Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Southern Company
  • Conchita Robinson, president and CEO, C. Robinson Associates, Inc.
  • Betty Siegel, president emeritus and endowed chair of leadership, ethics, and character, Kennesaw State University

About Greenleaf:

Founded in 1964, the Greenleaf Center is an international nonprofit organization that serves students, individuals, workplaces and the community by growing servant-leaders through education and programming. Robert K. Greenleaf was the author of “The Servant as Leader,” a landmark essay that coined the phrase “servant-leader” and launched the modern servant leadership movement.  Today the Greenleaf Center nurtures students, enhances workplaces and builds the servant leader community through education, leadership development and conferences. To find out more, please visit www.greenleaf.org.

About Turknett Leadership Group:

TLG’s expertise is leadership. With a 25 year history, their staff of psychologists, organization development consultants and business professionals brings both depth and breadth to clients. Through an approach grounded in science and guided by the Leadership Character Model, TLG helps organizations assess and develop leaders, plan for succession, and build accountable, engaged cultures. TLG has extensive experience coaching at senior levels and has worked with over 2,000 executives in more than 150 organizations.

Bob and Lyn Turknett are the co-founders of Turknett Leadership Group and co-authors of Decent People Decent Company: How to Lead with Character at Work and in Life, a book about the Leadership Character Model™. For more information visit www.turknett.com and www.decentpeopledecentcompany.com.


Bianca Wirth, Consulting Services Coordinator bwirth@turknett.com 770.270.1723