Blue Ribbon Winners for 2004
November & December
Cindee Pulliam, Director of Auxiliary Services and Steven Hood, Director of Housing are thankful for the team spirit of Gayle Barrett, Jean Rice, and Roberta Thurmond. In the first two weeks of fall semester, the three Business and Financial Affairs staffers assisted in the areas of Housing and Parking Services. “Due to the construction not being finished for the 4000 and 5000 Buildings of UTC Place and the new parking lot, both offices were inundated with calls from very unhappy parents and students. These individuals offered invaluable front line assistance in the Housing Office the first full week of school and the next week in Parking Services, soothing angry individuals by offering assistance, answering questions, and in general providing excellent customer service,” said Pulliam.
Administrative secretary Heather Grothe is “dedicated, energetic, and always going the extra mile,” according to James A. Inman, newly appointed Assistant Professor of English. Inman says Grothe helped him clear all the hurdles as a new faculty member—addressing paperwork, introducing him to staff in various departments, and assembling a folder with important information. Inman also applauded Grothe’s efforts to educate new faculty about classroom podiums, demonstrating the technologies, and “she was even able to share stories of how departmental faculty have made use of each, helping us imagine possible uses in our own classrooms,” Inman said.
Suzanne Riggle in the Music Department Office has worked “at a level I would consider above and beyond, admirably” according to Kevin Ford, Director of Choral Activities. Riggle covered the department’s needs as the sole assistant in the absence of her colleague, who was out sick. During that time, Riggle also trained a new person for a position.
Sandy Thornton, Campus Recreation, is always a wonderful asset to campus orientation sessions, providing assistance to parents and students. LeeAnne Viall, Assistant Director of Admissions, recalled the recent actions Thornton took to help a female student attending orientation without her parents. The student was the unfortunate victim of a vehicle break-in. While orientation staff members calmed the student’s mother by phone, Thornton hugged the student and walked her to the Chemistry Department to meet an advisor early. “In her personal car, Sandy then followed the student to a Hixson glass shop where the car window could be repaired. After being told the repair would take two hours, Sandy drove the student back to orientation so she could meet other new students,” Viall said. When the car was fixed, Thornton drove the student back to get her car, and made sure she got back on the interstate headed in the right direction. “By the time the day was over, not only did the student have a fall class schedule in hand, even more significant is the fact that after everything she had been through, she left with a smile on her face,” Viall said. Thank you, Sandy Thornton, for being a caring UTC employee who puts students first!
Diane Cox, Assistant Director of Financial Aid quickly responded to a potential problem for a student. Jonathan Looney, Director of Financial Aid, said a distraught student became upset about her status with financial aid. Cox quick recommendation was to call the UTC Counseling Center, where a staff member immediately contacted the student and calmed her. A staff member from the Counseling Center personally commended the office for interceding in the situation.
Sonya Davis, Facilities Planning and Management, witnessed a truck smash into a parked car in Lot 10 at the Engineering Building. The driver then moved the truck to another part of the lot. “Sonya really covered all bases. She put a note on the truck to inform the truck driver that the accident had been observed; placed a note on the red car to notify its owner of the accident - she included a description of the truck, it's driver, license number, etc. She was very thorough!” according to Paula Klintworth, of computer science, who turned out to be the owner of the red car. “Without Sonja's quick thinking and conscientiousness, I never would have known what had happened to my car, except that now it had a hole in the bumper. I feel that Sonja's caring and diligence should be rewarded and thus am nominating her for the Blue Ribbon Award,” said Klintworth. Thanks to Sonya Davis, who receives the Blue Ribbon Award for June.
Sherry Moody, Administrative Specialist in the College of Business Administration, has “clearly gone the extra mile, and in doing so, she has assisted may of our varied stakeholders,” according to Drs. Richard Casavant, dean, and John Fulmer, Associate Dean. As she assisted Fulmer with duties related to AACSB-International accreditation, Moody learned and implemented the technique of formatting an extensive report with multiple links for a CD. Moody also contributed to many other aspects of the accreditation process. Moody has also provided invaluable assistance to Lisa Flint as she assumed the position of Director of External Affairs.
For the month of April, the Blue Ribbon has been awarded to Marcus Myers, Walker Teaching Resource Center, who “is a model employee and friend” according to Kerry Hofer, Project Manager , Early SUCCESS. Hofer needed help starting a website for the grant she oversees, and Myers was extremely helpful. “I call him numerous times every day with one question or another and he almost always has the answer. If he doesn’t, he always tries to find out for me. I have watched him help every person who walks into the Resource Center in whatever capacity needed. Everyone in the building knows that if a problem arises, Marcus probably has the answer!” Hofer said. “When it comes to computer problems, website maintenance, copier issues, scanner questions and video editing, Marcus is always there to help whoever needs it. He is an incredible representative for the University.”
Monte Coulter wants to sincerely thank Willie Bell, Senior Custodian, Building Services, for the encouragement he gave to Coulter following an accident that caused serious injury to his right forearm and wrist. Coulter’s worries about his ability to continue as a performing musician were weighing on him after the accident. Unable to drive and wearing a splint, he caught a ride to campus to clean up his office. Coulter had never met Bell, who was taking care of trash in the building. “He stopped his work and, without being asked, began to relate the story of his own injury, quite similar to mine, which had taken place only 3 years ago,” Coulter said. “His own situation was much worse, in every imaginable way. He told me this not to complain or to seek attention or pity, but to encourage me. He showed me scars. He lifted the trashcan with that hand. He turned the doorknob with that hand. He told me that, in a manner of speaking, by his own example, I would be able to rehabilitate myself with time and patience, because he had done it. Still having his own work to finish, he left. I will never forget how this gift of his time and words lifted me and inspired me to believe in myself and my own abilities... enabling no less than the rebuilding of my career.” Many thanks to Willie Bell, a Blue Ribbon Winner in everyone’s book!
Alan White of the UTC Art Department calls Elvin Keyes, Senior Maintenance Worker in Facilities Planning a “model employee.” Keys has worked diligently to solve electrical problems at the South Stadium, even providing his personal cell phone number in case of a power outage during classes. Keyes promptly responded to a call to assess lighting problems in the wood-shop, and was mindful of class times when scheduling repairs. “Elvin understands some of the peculiar needs of an art department, with our complex web of studios and equipment. He makes a point to understand it all. Never have I seen such courtesy, such effectiveness, and such thoroughness,” White said. Congratulations to Elvin Keyes, Blue Ribbon winner for February, 2004.
Dispatcher Regina Shoulders helped Dr. Kaye McClung out of a tight spot when Kaye laid her keys down to retrieve a file from her secretary’s office late one evening, and then locked the door as she left the office. When security came to unlock the door, they realized there was no key that fit. McClung’s car keys were on the ring, and since her husband was working out of town, she had no way to get home. Shoulders solved the problem by suggesting a security officer drive McClung to her house. Kaye is most thankful to Regina Shoulders, who earned the Blue Ribbon Award for the month of January.