Friday, November 16, 2012

Deb Ply is the November EOM

Deb Ply walked into the Public Affairs Center Restaurant ready to work with her laptop in tow. However, she soon realized she had walked into her Employee of the Month party. Co-workers, friends, and family surprised her on November 15, 2012.

Ply is an Office Manager for the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and has worked at UIS since August 2008. Her nominator describes her as a “consummate professional” who is able to manage her complex and multifaceted job with “precision and accuracy.”

“She consistently works to improve the function of the Office of Undergraduate Education by developing new strategies and tools to manage the workflow and insure timely completion of office tasks. She works smoothly and professionally with a diverse population of students, faculty, staff, and external constituents,” said her nominator.

Ply has an interest in new technologies and recently developed a document tracking system for the office, which ensures that importance university documents are processed.

“Deb is always positive about her job and views the work she does as an opportunity to learn and grow professionally. She came from the business world, but believes deeply in the value of higher education and in the work that universities, like UIS, do,” added her nominator.

She is known for always being willing to help and tries to learn more about university processes so that she can answer questions and provide more support for student and faculty.

“Her professionalism is quiet – she does not gossip, is never negative towards co-workers, and is always customer friendly,” said her nominator.

Ply is active in volunteer activities on campus, including serving on the LGBTQ Resource Office’s Safe Zone Committee. She helped plan and implement many of the Safe Zone trainings that took place this fall.

As Employee of the Month, Ply will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Donald Fay is the October EOM

Building Service Sub Foreman Donald Fay didn’t know what to expect as he entered the Stars Lounge on October 31, 2012. He could have been walking into a Halloween party, but it turns out it was his Employee of the Month party.

Fay was named October 2012 Employee of the Month at UIS. His co-workers, friends, and family gathered to help him celebrate the award.

“Don’s pleasing, outgoing personality, character and honesty, combined with his energy, skills, enthusiasm and attention to detail on behalf of the occupants of his building are just a few of the talents that enable him to succeed,” said Fay’s nominator for the award.

Fay is known for coming up with practical solutions to resolve problems and maintains a “high, productive, consistent output of work.”

“Don consistently exceeds performance expectations,” said his nominator. “When asked about an assignment, his answer is usually ‘just finished’ or ‘we’re in the final states.”

He often completes projects ahead of his supervisor’s schedule and easily adapts on his own and makes decisions about challenging situations. He never leaves his supervisor wondering if a project has been completed.

“Don treats all of his co-workers as well as staff and faculty with respect,” said the nominator. “He provides encouragement to newer employees that he is training or works with. He is polite and tactful in all situations, follows proper protocol and responds to criticism without being defensive.”

Outside of work, Fay is active in his church and enjoys spending time with his children and grandchildren. Before coming to UIS in 2006, Fay served for over 20 years in the U.S. Navy.

As Employee of the Month, Fay will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on his i-card.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Patsy Nation is the September EOM

Patsy Nation yelled “surprise” when she walked into the PAC Restaurant on Sept. 26, 2012. However, the surprise was already out of the bag. Nation was planning to take the afternoon off, leaving her co-workers no choice but to tell her about the party.

Nation, an office support associate in the Provost’s Office, was named the September 2012 UIS Employee of the Month. Like most employees at UIS, she is known for going above and beyond what is required to help others and get the job done.

“Patsy pursues excellence in all things,” said one of her nominators. “She has high standards for her work products and her customer service, and she assists co-workers in achieving high quality work products as well with her top-notch proofreading skills.”

This past spring, Nation stepped outside her comfort zone to provide staff support for the UIS Campus Senate meetings, while a vacant position was being filled.

“Patsy did not just maintain the status quo but implemented improvements to existing processes. She very capably sought out the information and resources needed to perform the job effectively, and followed through to resolve technical issues that surfaced,” said a nominator.

Nation is known for her excellent interpersonal skills as she effectively interacts with diverse groups of students, faculty, staff, and guests in the Provost’s Office and while answering calls coming into the main UIS switchboard.

“Patsy routinely goes the extra mile to seek out information for callers, even anticipating and gathering information regarding upcoming campus events,” said the nominator.

Nation has worked in the Provost’s Office at UIS for the past 8 years. She was also honored with the Employee of the Month award in 2007.

As Employee of the Month, Nation will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Jill Menezes is the August EOM

Like most who win the award, Jill Menezes was surprised to find out she had been named the August 2012 UIS Employee of the Month. Her co-workers, friends, and family gathered on August 29, 2012, to celebrate in the Public Affairs Center Restaurant.

Menezes is a Business/Administrative Associate in the Office of Business and Financial Services (OBFS) Purchasing Department at UIS, where she has worked for 11 years.

“A large portion of Jill’s job is customer service focused,” said her nominator. “She helps individuals on the campus understand the complicated purchasing processes. She helps people with their contract, P-Card, Banner and IBuy purchasing questions.”

Menezes is known for being “outstanding” at contract processing. She works with vendors to make sure they comply with university and state contract requirements in a timely manner.

“Jill is a very positive, upbeat person and she possesses a great sense of humor,” said her nominator. “She is always upbeat and pleasant to deal with. She treats people like she would like to be treated. Jill’s ability to be professional when people are stressed and her ability to follow every project through to completion shows her to be a seasoned procurement professional.”

Outside of work, she is a family orientated person who enjoys spending time with her three daughters. She’s active in her local school, sports, and church activities.

As Employee of the Month, Menezes will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Randy Williams is the July EOM

As a Food Service Administrator, it was hard to surprise Randy Williams with an Employee of the Month Party in the PAC Restaurant. However, his co-workers, family, and friends were able to pull it off on Thursday, July 19. Williams was named UIS Employee of the Month for July 2012.

“Randy’s greatest asset is his energy and enthusiasm,” said one of his nominators. “He consistently brings to work a positive, winning, can-do attitude.”

Williams started working at UIS in August 2009 and has consistently exceeded expectations. He is known for doing whatever is required to ensure the highest level of professional service at catered events on campus and throughout Food Service operations.

“Randy is willing to work anywhere and at any time he is required to do so,” said a nominator. “Recently, he took it upon himself to bring his personal hotdog cart to sell at Springfest.”

Williams also listens to students and was instrumental in expanding the menu at The Capitol Grille in Founders Residence Hall and the PAC Food Emporium. International food has also been added to the menu to give students a taste of home.

“He is patient with last minute changes and is always responsive to our needs,” said a nominator. “He offers new and fun catering ideas for student events.”

As Employee of the Month, Williams will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on his i-card.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Erica Michael is the June EOM

Erica Michael was asked to secretly escort her co-worker, Ralph Shank, to his employee of the month party. But when she walked into the PAC Restaurant it soon became clear that she was the one being honored. Michael was named the UIS Employee of the Month for June 2012.

Michael, assistant to the chancellor, has worked at UIS since March of 1999. She is described as an expert in university processes and finances. She manages various types of accounts, oversees several unit budgets, and the overall Chancellor’s Office accounts.

“Erica has an outstanding attitude,” said her nominator. “Even when dealing with sensitive topics and problems and conflicts, she calmly gathers the information that is needed, asks good questions, always seeks clarification, and then makes good decisions. Her judgment is outstanding.”

She routinely steps up to help other units manage their finances when they are short-handed. Most recently, she has become an expert on the new electronic travel processing system.

“Erica provides a lot of behind-the-scenes assistance that no one ever finds out. She says yes, never mentions it to anyone, and just goes about her business and does it very well,” said her nominator.

In addition to her work in the Chancellor’s Office, she also has played a leadership role in the UIS State and University Employees Combined Appeal (SECA) campaign for several years. Michael is also a regular volunteer at UIS commencement and other campus events.

As Employee of the Month, Michael will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Julie Atwell is the May EOM

Julie Atwell is known for going out of her way to help others, whether they are students, faculty, staff, or community members. She is the only office support specialist for the English and History Departments assisting 24 faculty members.

Atwell was honored for her hard work and dedication on May 16 when she was named University of Illinois Springfield Employee of the Month for May 2012. She was surprised by co-workers and friends during a reception in the second floor lobby of University Hall.

“She always responds professionally and is a mellow, tempering influence on those who need her expertise. She’s also one of the nicest people here on campus,” said one of her nominators.

Atwell has become an expert on course scheduling, assigning advisors, and employee reimbursement. Even with a growing workload, she is both dependable and accurate in the volume of work she produces.

“Julie is a wonderful employee. She has been steady and constant person in an often stressful situation,” said another nominator.

Outside of work, Julie is very active in her church and spends time during the summer working with teenagers on mission trips. She has worked at UIS since February of 1991.

As Employee of the Month, Atwell will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Amanda Winters in the April EOM

Amanda Winters wondered why she was having a meeting in the Public Affairs Center Restaurant on April 16, but followed her co-workers anyway. Upon entering the room, she was surprised by friends and family.

Winters, an online coordinator for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, was named the April 2012 UIS Employee of the Month, for her above and beyond performance on the job. As her nominator put it, “Amanda is very cheerful and maintains a positive attitude, even when assigned difficult tasks.” She expertly handles challenging situations and always gets along with everyone.

“Amanda is highly dependable and can be trusted to get things done. She acts in a very proactive fashion, anticipates problems, and tackles them,” her nominator wrote.

Faculty in the departments she serves have come to respect her as a colleague. She never objects to work given to her and always finds a way to accomplish a task.

Winters is a member of APAC, serves on the Compensation Review Committee, UPAC, and is a member of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Strategic Planning Committee. She has worked at UIS since June of 2006.

As Employee of the Month, Winters will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Karen Headrick is the March EOM

Karen Headrick wondered why her daughter took the day off, but soon found out when she was named UIS Employee of the Month for March 2012. She was surprised by family and friends during an awards ceremony in Brookens Library’s Mary Jane’s Café on March 23.

Headrick is described as a “knowledgeable person who strives for performance excellence.” She is known for anticipating the needs of students and faculty and working after hours in her role of office support specialist for the Business Administration program.

“Karen is very helpful to students and spends a great deal of time in telephone and face-to-face meetings with them,” said one of her nominators. “She is highly regarded by the faculty in the Business Administration program. She’s also very helpful to other support staff within the College, offering her knowledge and experience freely.”

Headrick serves as the “face” of the Business Administration program and has been instrumental in shaping, promoting, and advancing the agenda of the department.

“Karen has truly made her mark as a person of integrity, and as an exerciser of good judgment. Karen Headrick exhibits competency, sophistication, and professionalism in her duties,” said a second nominator.

As Employee of the Month, Headrick will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Gloria Newton Davlantis is the February EOM

Gloria Newton Davlantis, library operations associate at Brookens Library was named UIS Employee of the Month for February 2012 during a surprise celebration in Mary Jane’s Café on Friday, February 17. She was joined by family, friends and co-workers.

Newton Davlantis helps faculty put items on reserve for their courses and also trains and supervises student assistants at the library. She works tirelessly to get faculty the items they need and even brings pizza for students to enjoy during orientation.

As her nominator stated, “Gloria is ‘cool’ but firm with her student assistants – relating to them in a manner that is on their level while maintaining high expectations for performance. She always seeks to convey a positive and upbeat ‘vibe’ to Library patron.”

Gloria juggles the schedules of staff and student assistants to make sure the circulation desk is always staffed. That often means she will stay late, come in early, or work from home.

As Employee of the Month, Newton Davlantis will receive a special parking spot for the month along with some extra spending cash on her i-card.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Shawn Craig Shures named Employee of the Year for 2011

Shawn Craig Shures
, the assistant director of graduate recruitment for the Graduate Public Service Internship (GPSI) program was named UIS Employee of the Year for 2011 during the twenty-ninth annual celebration in the Sangamon Auditorium lobby on January 25, 2012.

Shures consistently exceeds expectations and comes up with new ideas to improve the GPSI program. She has taken on a leadership role in terms of meeting with potential applications and handling all program inquires. She is known for her willingness to tackle and brainstorm problems.

“I love working at U of I Springfield. I couldn’t work in a better office,” said Shures. “I’ve been recruiting here off and on for about 15 years. It’s what I do."

Shures was among 11 other individual Employees of the Month nominated for the award. Other candidates included Andrew Fitzpatrick, Tyler Tanaka, Raymond Barnett, James Burgdorf, Brian Truter, Lindsey Feger, Marsha Neposchlan, Wendy Johnson, Teresa Seacrist, and Kevin Zepp.

“I congratulate all the fellow employees of the month that are out here today. I know we all work really hard and work well beyond our job descriptions,” she said.

Shures’ nominator praised her for leading by example and always putting customer service first.

“She truly is an ambassador for this campus; her work is impeccable. She prides herself on her commitment to UIS and leaves a positive image with everyone she encounters,” said her nominator.

The Employee of the Year gets a check for $500, plus a special parking spot for the entire year.