Martha Scache Named 2019
John Batley Award Recipient

One of the traditional highlights of the PAISBOA Annual Meeting is the presentation of the John Batley Award, our highest honor. A former CFO of Westtown School, recipient of the Visionary Award, and the man for whom the John Batley Award was created, John’s legacy is one of selfless giving and inclusion in PAISBOA. We celebrate his character, competence, and consistency each year with the selection of the John Batley Award winner.

For 2019, the John Batley Award was presented to Martha Scache of Abington Friends School. Martha has served PAISBOA in several roles, as a board member, member of the Health Insurance Group, and member of the Business Services Committee, before joining the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust as a charter trustee, and assuming the Chair of the PAISBOA HBT in 2016. With a B.A. from Penn State, Martha has been with Abington Friends School for over 20 years, starting as the transportation manager, then moving to accounts payable. After obtaining her MBA from DeSales University, she moved into the payroll/HR/benefits role. She then became Business Manager, and currently serves as the Director of Business and Operations.

Martha was honored at the conclusion of the 2019 Annual Meeting, where she was joined by a number of former Batley Award winners in attendance, including Frank AloiseJoe Van BernumEmily MillerHal DavidowGail Crane, and Michael Noonan.

Following a tribute to John Batley by Michael Noonan of Friends Select School, Martha was presented by Mark GibbonsChair of the PAISBOA Board of Directors, who described Martha as “an impactful and loyal member of the PAISBOA organization. Whether it is through her participation in its programs, thoughtful responses on the e-lists, or leadership at the Board level, PAISBOA and its member schools and universities have been blessed to have Martha among its stewards.”

He went on to say:

This year’s recipient, Martha Scache is a passionate woman! She is dedicated to Abington Friends School - its mission, her colleagues, and the students and families she serves. She is the steadfast leader of the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust and accountable to the over 8,500 employees and 15,000 lives in the 132 PAISBOA HBT member schools and universities. She is an ally and advocate for diversity and inclusion, encouraging other business officers to get out of the office, especially for things that feel less than fundamental to the business office function, and to think differently about how we do our work and interact with colleagues and students. Martha believes that the work of diversity and inclusion is at the core of what we do at our schools, and is, therefore, central to all our work. Martha’s devotion to her school, PAISBOA, the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust, diversity and inclusion initiatives, and all the constituents she represents, exemplify the values of John Batley and is the reason we honor her service to PAISBOA with the John Batley Award.

Rich Nourie, Head of School at Abington Friends School, agrees, “Martha Scache is an exemplary leader in the AFS community and we are proud to see her voice of leadership extend to the larger PAISBOA independent school community. Martha leads with hard work, integrity, compassion and a deeply rooted spirit of equity and inclusion. She engenders trust in careful listening, thoughtful follow-through amidst a complex role with many dimensions, and her passion for professional growth and continual learning. Congratulations to Martha Scache on the honor of receiving the John Batley Award.”

A self-proclaimed introvert, Martha prefers to work quietly and diligently in the background. When the need arose for PAISBOA to reorganize the association to continue to offer health insurance to our member schools, Martha stepped up to take on this leadership role without hesitation.

Joan Barone, Interim Executive Director of the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust recounts, “In 2013 we joined the newly-formed PAISBOA HBT Board as charter Trustees, and out of sheer necessity Martha agreed to step into the role of Board Chair in 2016.” Joan goes on to say, “The business of the PAISBOA HBT has been on a non-stop fast track since then, and Martha has been so very generous with her time and talents in leading the Board. She is smart, direct, and has a knack for always asking the right questions. Martha goes to great lengths to ensure that the mission of the PAISBOA HBT and what is best for its members is always at the heart of the work of the Trust. I am so pleased to see Martha's hard work and dedication acknowledged with this prestigious award!”

Tom Taft, Vice Chair of the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust affirms, “I have been honored to work with Martha on the Board of the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust. When Martha speaks, I listen. I listen very carefully, not only because Martha is smart, ethical, articulate, and thoughtful, but also because of Martha’s complete and long-standing commitment to the goals of our cooperative PAISBOA organization. Martha is the consummate professional with our common best interest guiding the work she does so impressively on behalf of all of us.”

Gail Crane nominated Martha for the Batley Award, as she has known Martha for many years as an active member of PAISBOA, serving on the PAISBOA Board with her. Gail shares, “In addition to running the business operations of AFS and taking on the leadership of the Health Benefit Trust, which is another full-time job, Martha is the quintessential colleague. She always makes time to share her wisdom or just be supportive. In addition, during my tenure at The Quaker School at Horsham, we worked on two collaborative projects together. These projects were outside the purview of the business office, but they truly benefited both groups of students. Martha understood the importance of these collaborations and helped make them happen.”

As Chair of the PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust, Martha continues to “make it happen!” She has guided the group through many changes - self-funding, a carrier change, and hiring a new executive director - with a steady hand. Her quiet, deliberative manner is calming to the leadership of the Trust as well as reassuring to the member representatives from each school and university.

We thank Martha for her passion and dedication to the independent school and higher education communities through her work with PAISBOA and PAISBOA Health Benefit Trust. Her commitment to the PAISBOA mantra of “one for all and all for one,” as well as her embodiment of the PAISBOA core values of integrity, transparency, and loyalty make her a role model for all business officers and a most deserving recipient of the John Batley Award

Read More About John Batley