Friday, December 12, 2008

Chrisa Potthast is December EOM

Chrisa Potthast tried to call in sick on Friday morning, December 12, but her supervisor, Suzy Woods, asked her to come in for a meeting anyway.

The "meeting" was actually Chrisa's own party to celebrate her as the Employee of the Month for December!

"I'm sorry I made you come in, but I hope you understand now!" Suzy laughed.

Chrisa is a disability services specialist, specializing in adaptive technology, in the Office of Disability Services.

"You have been selected because you have exhibited outstanding courtesy toward others and an exemplary performance in your job," Suzy noted. "You have also enthusiastically supported UIS."

"And let me just say," Suzy added, "that not only is she an exemplary employee, she is the sweetest person in the world. I'll be stuck on this side of campus without an umbrella in the rain, and she'll come and get me. So many people, when they found out you won, called me and said 'I'm so glad it's Chrisa!'"

At first Chrisa was unsure why the PAC restaurant was full of people who erupted into cheers when she walked in, but she was grateful for the honor, even if it meant coming in when she was sick.

"Thank you, everyone," she said.

Monday, November 17, 2008

November EOM is Rowena Vail

When Rowena Vail walked into the Public Affairs Center restaurant on Monday afternoon, November 17, she thought she was coming to a meeting about budgets. Instead, Rowena was surprised by numerous coworkers and friends who gathered to celebrate her being named November Employee of the Month.

Rowena held a position in the cataloging department of the library at UIS in her earlier years, before leaving to pursue other job opportunities. She then came back to UIS to work for the Capital Scholars honors program a year and a half after it began.

Rowena now serves as the assistant to the director of the honors program.

"She jumped right in, she became indispensable immediately, the students loved her immediately, and we came to depend on her absolutely because she is extremely dependable," said Karen Moranski, associate vice chancellor for Undergraduate Education and associate professor of English. "And over the years, she has continued that service to the Capital Scholars honors program."

"So many of you know her through the honors program and others in other ways, but she is a tremendous asset to UIS," Karen added.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Frank Moscardelli is EOM for October

Frank Moscardelli's wife, parents and son joined a group of his coworkers on Monday morning, October 20, to surprise him with a celebration in the Public Affairs Center restaurant.

Frank, grounds worker, was named Employee of the Month for October.

Frank began his career at UIS part-time in 2002 and was hired full-time in 2004, said his supervisor Joan Buckles.

"He was pretty much handed rough conditions ever since he started because he had to finish establishing the LRH landscape, and then he got handed the Quad landscape to establish and now Founders Hall is coming on," Joan said. "But he's done everything very well. He's always open to and willing to do a lot of the little projects going on."

Frank has been involved with planning and implementing the UIS rock garden, Japanese garden and Lee Frost-Kumpf memorial on campus, in addition to taking care of the grounds at the residence halls.

"I'm very fortunate he's willing to do all of this because his area involves the green roof, so he's willing to watch over that too," Joan said with a laugh.

Frank was in disbelief when he walked into his party and very modest about his work.

"Everybody helps out - I can't do it without them, and Joan's a good boss," he said.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Jill Voyles is September EOM

Jill Voyles thought she was walking into a meeting about scholarships on Wednesday afternoon, and she even waved to a couple of her coworkers as she entered the Public Affairs Center restaurant. But after a moment of glancing around the room, she realized she had stepped foot into her own celebration.

Jill, an applications specialist for Information Technology Services, was named September Employee of the Month for UIS on Wednesday, September 3.

"Looking around the room, probably the majority of you work directly with Jill. Whether it's training or Banner or a committee, you'd probably agree with me that she's done excellent work with the various things she's done," said Terry Powell, assistant director of software applications and database support for ITS. "She's very committed and reliable."

Terry described Jill as an "overachiever."

"She logs in before work and she's on email after work and on vacation," he said. "It's my pleasure to congratulate you."

"I don't know what to say," Jill laughed. "I'm shocked, I really had no idea!"

She looked around the room at all of her coworkers gathered and smiled.

"I'm honored; thank you very much," she said.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

August EOM is Donna Schaub

Dr. Margot Duley, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, called it the "worst kept secret," but although Donna Schaub had been tipped off, she was still thrilled to be celebrated as the August 2008 Employee of the Month.

Donna, who works as the assistant to the dean in the College of LAS, was named Employee of the Month during her "surprise" party on Tuesday afternoon in the Public Affairs Center Restaurant.

"I can't think of anyone who deserves this honor more," Margot said. "I can't tell you the number of people who wrote supportive letters and made supportive comments, so it really is a collective nomination."

Margot noted the tremendous range of duties Donna completes, scheduling more than 500 courses a semester, taking care of faculty appointments in the largest college at UIS and supervising all of the civil service staff in the college.

"The thing that everyone enjoys about Donna is her unfailing good humor, her comprehensive knowledge of university regulations and her general groundedness," she said. "She is an extraordinary human being to work with."

What stands out most, however, is the "incredible role she plays in cementing us all together as a team," Margot said.

"Her office is the prime screen closet for every frustration, her humor and calmness get us on an even keel, and she plays the role of the college Dear Abby, giving advice about life and romance," Margot laughed. "But that's not all. She is the dispenser of candy and treats. And then finally, she is a fountainhead of trivia of Cardinals baseball. And she does all of this and more against background of constant interruption."

The College presented Donna with a gift of mini Cardinals baseball bat, and she expressed her gratitude for the nomination.

"Thank you for this honor. I love working here and I work with the best people; they have been supportive and so strong for me in these past years which haven't been so good (personally)," she said. "This really means a lot to me. I appreciate all of you."

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Alice Bettis is July EOM

Alice Bettis was overcome with emotion as she stepped into the Public Affairs Center area of rooms C and D on Tuesday morning, August 19.

"I just don't know what to say," she said with surprise and gratitude.

Alice was greeted with cheers from her family and fellow UIS employees as she was honored as Employee of the Month for July 2008. Alice is an Administrative Aide for Sangamon Auditorium.

At first, the surprise was on the party-goers as Alice walked in through the wrong door, but the gathered crowd quickly recovered and showered her with applause and hugs.

"None more deserving, hardworking, honest and loyal; I can't tell you all the reasons why you deserve this," said Alice's supervisor Bob Vaughn, director of Sangamon Auditorium. "But let me assure you, you deserve every bit of this. I certainly appreciate every day that you're here. Congratulations."

Alice accepted her award with her children and grandchildren by her side, and tears in her eyes.

"I remember when I first started working here and seeing emails come around about Employee of the Month and thinking, 'those people are just in a class of their own to be selected by their peers'," she said. "I'm humbled and honored. Thank you so much."

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

June EOM is Sharon Heflin

By Courtney Westlake

It was a double celebration on Tuesday, July 1 as Sharon Heflin celebrated her birthday and received a big surprise when she walked into Room H of the Public Affairs Center Tuesday morning.

Sharon, an office support specialist in the Office of Graduate Intern Programs, was honored as Employee of the Month for June 2008.

Pulling off the surprise was stressful, said Kim Hayden, who joked that Sharon can smell cake "three days before it ever gets to campus!" But a startled look, followed by excitement, from Sharon as she entered the room was well worth the effort.

"It's wonderful to be able to honor you today. It's been a lot of fun - a little bit stressful! - but a lot of fun," Kim laughed.

Sharon is an integral member of the GPSI team, and her June EOM status is extremely deserving, Kim said.

"I always think I'm the luckiest supervisor on campus because we have just the greatest staff, and Sharon is like the glue that keeps us all going," Kim said. "Without fail, she always rises to the occasion; she has wonderful compassion and attention to detail, and she goes about her work with a sense of humor."

The recognition was the perfect birthday present to Sharon from the UIS community.

"I just love working where I'm working and getting to work with all of you makes my job easier," Sharon said. "Kim asked me if I was going to retire and I said 'no way!' Thank you all; I really appreciate it."

Monday, May 19, 2008

Dennis Jones is EOM for May

Dennis Jones didn't give much thought to his meeting scheduled in the PAC restaurant on Monday afternoon...until he was on his way. Then, he said, he caught on to the fact that there was a surprise in store for him.

Dennis was honored on Monday as he was named the Employee of the Month for May. Dennis works as a network specialist in the information technology services department, which is responsible for the planning, management and direction of technology initiatives in support of both academic and administrative operations at UIS.

Upon being surprised after arriving at the PAC restaurant, Dennis admitted he was suspicious about why he was traveling with a large group to the restaurant and why one of his escorts was carrying his IP phone.

"I felt like I was being dragged down to my last dinner," he said with a laugh.

Regardless, he was extremely pleased with the honor, and his coworkers praised his work over the last ten years of his employment at UIS.

"Dennis has been on my team for less than a year, but he's quite the asset," said Pam Rodgers, Dennis' supervisor. "I'm very happy to have him; he's very thorough in his work."

"It's been a pleasure working with all of you over the years," Dennis said. "You're a great group of people; I couldn't ask for a better group. Thank you for doing this."

"I'm happy I caught on to this a few minutes before to prepare this wonderful speech," he added jokingly.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Tammy Craig is April EOM


It took longer than usual to get the surprise planned for Tammy Craig, but on Wednesday, May 14, the campus community celebrated Craig being named as the April Employee of the Month.

As the director of the Career Development Center, Craig assists students in preparing for their lifelong careers and works to improve the resources offered at the center for all members of campus. Her continuous involvement with the campus community, her work ethic and her friendliness to everyone she comes across make her the perfect choice for the Employee of the Month for April.

Craig was honored with a reception in the Student Center.

"For those of you who work with Tammy, you know how quickly she moves," said Dr. Marya Leatherwood, associate vice chancellor and director of enrollment management. "But as a result of that fast movement, we have had to reschedule this Employee of the Month celebration not once, not twice but three times!"

"I'm sorry to have inconvenienced all of you," Tammy joked.

The Employee of the Month award is well-deserved by Tammy, Marya said.

"She is doing so many things and really has a vision for the Career Development Center," she said. "It's most deserving, and we're delighted."

Tammy commended all of the staff she has worked with at the Career Development Center and others throughout campus for being supportive and nice to work with.

"Coming into the Career Development Center in 2001 was really probably the best part of my career so far," she said. "The staff that has worked there over the years - current staff, retired staff - it's just been a pleasure, and I couldn't have done anything with you. And as far as all of the other departments that collaborate with us, I just want to thank you as well. Everyone has been wonderful to work with all of these years."

Monday, March 24, 2008

March EOM is Donna Young


She was warned by her supervisors that if she continued to work hard, be responsible and helpful and represent the Chancellor's office with dignity, someone would notice. And that proved to be an accurate prediction.

A very surprised Donna Young walked into a reception in her honor Monday morning, March 24, as she was named UIS' Employee of the Month for March.

"I have to say I told you so!" said Dr. Maggie Noe, associate chancellor for the Office of Access and Equal Opportunity, with a laugh. "It was inevitable that this day would arrive."

Donna is a staff secretary for the offices of Access and Equal Opportunity and UIS Legal Counsel. As such, she interacts with students, parents of students, faculty, staff and other campus community members regarding affirmative action, equal opportunity, legal issues and anything else that comes her way.

"She is a very deserving recipient of the Employee of the Month. She is a caring, compassionate, competent employee whose commitment to UIS and her own high standards never wavers," Maggie said. "She is a dynamic and dedicated employee, and she is admired and respected by her colleagues. Thank you for everything you do, Donna, in making UIS a very special place."

Donna said she was grateful for the honor. Her husband, Jeff, who also works at UIS, was one of the many on hand to help her celebrate her achievements.

"I know this has probably been said quite a few times but I really believe it: I couldn't do my job as well as I do or enjoy it as much as I do without dedicated and helpful friends that I'm surrounded with, and I really do appreciate all of you," Donna said. "Thank you for sharing this with me today."

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Ron Peddicord is February EOM


Not many people have worked in as many locations in the library as Library Specialist Ron Peddicord, who has served in departments like circulation, cataloging, government documents, acquisitions and public services. And through his work, he has assisted thousands of faculty, students and staff members of the campus community over the 25 years he has been at UIS.

During a celebration on Tuesday, Feb. 26 in the Public Affairs Center Restaurant, Ron's contributions to UIS were honored as he was named Employee of the Month for February 2008.

"Ron was one of first people I met when I came to work here in 1995," said colleague Denise Green. "In many ways, Ron is really the heart and soul of library instructional services. He really is the spirit we all strive for in customer service. And Ron can handle anything!"

An elaborately-decorated cake with some of Ron's favorite things, including Route 66, UIS, the state fair, a book and more was served to party guests. Ron was presented with a certificate and a first date of issue Lincoln Illinois state quarter, since he is a fan of Abraham Lincoln.

"There are a lot of people more deserving of this than I am, but it's been really great working with all of you," Ron acknowledged to the crowd gathered to celebrate his achievements and dedication to UIS.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Employee of the Year is...Doug Sheley!


The 2007 UIS Employee of the Year was announced on Tuesday, February 5 during the annual recognition ceremony in the Sangamon Auditorium lobby.

Doug Sheley was named the recipient of the award in front of a large crowd of faculty and staff at the reception. Sheley was the Employee of the Month in June and became momentarily speechless when his name was called as Employee of the Year.

"Everybody's been teasing me if I had my speech ready, and I said, 'no!'" he laughed. "To have this honor is unbelievable; I really appreciate it. I just work with a bunch of wonderful people."

The other employees of the month during 2007 included Kathryn Kleeman, Lisa Clemmons-Stott, Brian Beckerman, John Ringle, Bill Ulery, Dale Abeln, Patsy Nation, Krystal Wilson, Melanie Smith and Pat Austin.

All of the Employees of the Month were able to stand and be recognized for their achievements before Chancellor Richard Ringeisen read Sheley's name as award recipient.

Wesley Weisenburn, assistant vice president for human resources, served as Master of Ceremonies. The 11 Employees of the Month display exemplary characteristics and attitudes, he said.

"We have come today to honor, recognize and celebrate their achievements," he said. "These 11 employees as selected by their peers on campus for Employee of the Month serve as leaders in their departments; they serve as 11 role models as they lead by example. Their proficiency, skills and attention to their work assignments and to fellow employees and their customers are observed by all of us."