DAA Winner: Michael A. Jurasek, '81
Mike Jurasek is an everyday hero: a community leader, selfless provider of time and financial support, and a family man. His story of local boy (Concord High School) becoming a star athlete at Albion College (cross country and track), and then staying to give back to the community makes him a positive role model. Jurasek's achievements as a teacher, coach, and member of the community are proof that he is one of the "best of best."
For more than 25 years, he has touched lives in a meaningful way each day as an educator and coach. The academic success of his student athletes consistently exceeds the school's norm. Through Jurasek's skillful coaching, Albion High School cross country and track teams have set school records, won numerous conference titles in both the Twin Valley and Southern Michigan Athletic Conference, and garnered multiple state championships.
Jurasek continues to demonstrate genuine leadership, dedication, and service to others in many ways. With reductions in the local manufacturing sector, a majority of the students who attend Albion High School are challenged both socially and economically. He provides guidance and holds the students accountable to do their best. And he has provided the encouragement for young men and women who would not normally consider advanced education or military service to successfully pursue these opportunities. As head coach, he has helped his students become collegiate athletic competitors at more than 25 different institutions.
A five-time recipient of Coach of the Year honors within the Albion Public Schools, Jurasek is the director of Michigan's Indoor Track Series and is the current selection chairperson for Team Michigan in the Midwest Meet of Champions. He is an eight-time recipient of the Kellogg Distinguished Educator Award. Jurasek remains active with Albion College cross country and track and field programs in his spare time.
He and his wife, Cheryl, reside in Concord, Michigan. They have two children, Lesley and Christopher.