Read the latest standing ovations submitted this year. Recent recipients are:
Previous months:Kathryn McMillan, Chase Rogers, Nicole Gammons, Debby Pyatt, Matt Horvat, Aretha Sutton, Gary Penrod, Eli Lowe, D'nea Spencer and Cashyn Britt Chase Rogers, Jerry Solomon, George Sills, Hector Mitchell, Sarah Williams, Matt Kerr, Crystal Jester, Tim Bowman, Sherry Clinton, Lynda Lotich, Jordan Jones and Grounds Crew, Andrea Whittington, Craig Bradley and William Lee; Erica Archie, Barbara (BJ) Crosby, Kimberlie Scales and Heidi Sosa; Elizabeth Davis, Dave LaVack, Nakita Green, Travis Andrews, and Kurt Linney
Who do you want to recognize?
Pause and give someone a standing ovation.
I wanted to share sincere gratitude and praise for Terry's staff, specifically Kurt Linney, who has been troubleshooting a significant problem we've been experiencing in our Communications Center. For some time, we've been receiving robo- and telemarketing calls in our Communications Center. While these are a nuisance to anyone, and only a mild one in the beginning, the calls increased over time to a volume of 120 calls per shift! As you can imagine, this volume of fraud/telemarketing/etc calls has the potential to interfere with real calls for service, either delaying answering or distracting in the middle of a response. Several of our Telecommunications Officers worked to report those they could identify to the FCC, but many were beyond their ability to trace/identify and report. Once reported as an issue to IT, they led the way coordinating with NWN and other services to reduce/eliminate this disruption and over the past month they have been able to nearly eliminate the calls. They remained diligent and consistent in following up on this issue, recognizing the detriment to our services that this could cause. We are extremely grateful for their efforts and the improvements they've been able to make for us on this problem.
Travis' job has a lot of unscheduled events that need to be attended to immediately when video, sound, or digital signage stops working. He is much appreciated for his responsive time, which understandable can't be instantaneous. Meanwhile, if he is able to plan, he is always well-prepared, professional and a true problem-solver. I am so grateful that he is at UNCSA.
Nakita is the glue that holds the IT department together. She quietly goes about the day to day logistical tasks that support our IT departmnent while also providing highly technical input on so many of the services that the rest of the university depends. Because IT services can be the difference between whether or not we all get work done, problems within the department can quickly become critical. Nakita has the strength and discipline to maintain focus in these worst of times. She has a Buddha-like ability to remain calm and stay focused when there is a storm around her. She is truly a leader in our department. She is supportive of all IT staff and I have never heard her complain about any task she is asked to perform or situation she has found herself in. We have a lot of problems in our IT department - but Nakita makes those problems easier to deal with and I cannot think of another person I'd want on my team when a problem arises. She is a treasure and we are lucky to have her on our team.
Kathryn led the large committee that oversaw all the moving parts and hundreds of details for the University Commencement and the High School Commencement. The commencement ceremonies are major production events with multiple departments working across the campus. She was collaborative and constantly checking to see if there were any items that may have been overlooked. If a question was asked and she didn’t know, she’d find the answer by the next meeting if not sooner. Her attention to detail, inclusiveness and being vulnerable to admit when she didn’t know something are marks of a leader. I’d gladly work with her on any project – large or small.
Debby put together the creek cleanup in “Kudzu Valley” in March. When bad weather came, she coordinated the rescheduling. I love how Debby set up a service opportunity that was on campus and a way for us to get out of our areas/departments to meet others.”
Nicole gave the extra effort to ensure that all the Knowledge Base articles were updated and accurate when Adobe Creative Cloud became available to faculty and staff at no charge to their departments. I just requested an update to one of the articles. She reviewed and updated any article related to Adobe Creative Cloud to ensure its accuracy. This attention to detail makes IT’s Knowledge Base a fantastic resource for students, faculty, and staff to quickly find answers to some of the most common questions about using technology on campus.
He has been the biggest help ever. I am so glad he is at the help desk now. There was a big issue with Adobe PDFs going away and I dealt with it for as long as possible. But I called the help desk and Chase set me up with everything I needed. He is a true asset to the help desk. I appreciate how he went above and beyond to remote in and help me with this.
Matt has been working with us for the past several months to help us with internal business processes. He's met with us several times, and even created a budgeting spreadsheet in Excel, that will not only help us with tracking payments, but also for budget planning in the future. He has been very generous with his time and patience, and has really helped us move things forward.
Aretha is amazing. She spent almost a full hour working directly with me to get job descriptions updated and posted, as our department is urgently recruiting and understaffed. She went above and beyond in ensuring we were able to expedite the process and I am truly grateful for her dedication and commitment. Standing Ovation, Aretha!
Gary has demonstrated great innovation and insight into the needs of business/budget managers by creating and implementing a new report in Teams. The report concisely captures budget information that budget managers used to have to run multiple reports to obtain. This has become a huge time-saver and is much more intuitive than other reports we've had in the past. I appreciate his hard work and dedication to innovating new processes/reports to make managing our budgets as seamless as possible. Thank you, Gary. Standing Ovation!!!
Eli has his daily assignments as Warehouse Manager and all that entails; however, due to the continued efforts of Eli, our Dance and Visual Arts Vending program continues to be a huge success. Eli continues to keep a check on the machines for restocking, and because of his skill set, he performs the maintenance and repairs of the equipment, which is not a responsibility in his assigned duties. This is a cost savings measure that allows all profits to go directly to the UNCSA Scholarship Fund.
Although Eli no longer has direct supervision over the Campus Mail Center, he continues to check in on the staff to ascertain if assistance is needed. When there is an influx of student mail and packages, without being asked, Eli sorts, pitch, and prepare packages for student pick-up.
Eli continually makes himself available to assist whenever and however he can. He is a true example of one who deserves a Standing Ovation.”
“D'nea and Cashyn were instrumental in successfully transitioning our students into our new residence hall, Artist Village. Despite several key staff being out, Cashyn and D'nea both worked tirelessly (and I mean... TIRELESSLY!) to ensure that the hiccups of moving into a new building were as smooth as possible and supported our students to minimize any impact to their academic schedules. Effort at times can be invisible to those who are only observing it from the outside; but here, the effort was seen, heard, and recognized. All I can say is thank you for your Herculean grit and determination! *applause emoji*
Chase always answers the Help Desk telephone line! If Chase doesn’t know the answer, he researches and follows up asap. Standing O!!!!!!! And Many Thanks!!!!!!!
George has taken on an incredible amount of work during a very busy time of year and has done it all with such admirable positivity and strength. He is knowledgeable and capable, even under the stress the past few weeks have brought, and his patience and fortitude are commendable. He is greatly appreciated and admired!
Hector is incredibly responsive and respectful. No matter how late I am in requesting assistance with a venue set-up, he always manages to get it done. And it's always done exactly as I have requested. He plays such a vital role at UNCSA in making sure that we all can do the best for our students.
Sarah Williams is an amazing employee, but on top of that, she’s been the glue that has the School of Filmmaking together through multiple transitions in leadership over the past few years. It’s no surprise that our new dean is so happy with her executive assistant – she knows her stuff, she’s kind, she’s funny, and it’s clear she cares about her work and coworkers. It might not be immediately apparent to folks around her because she keeps such a calm, professional demeanor, but Sarah is always juggling a dozen high priority needs at any given time. We are so lucky to have her!
Matt has been here only since May, and has already made it clear that he’s here to work. He’s fixed previous door issues and has been so awesome and active in planning for future things. Our department really appreciates his work and we’re really glad that One Card and the door group was able to get such good help.
Crystal has been pulling double-duty serving as business manager to both Advancement and Strategic Communications since June while Strategic Communication’s business manager has been vacant. She is professional, positive, helpful, and is doing twice the amount of work for an extended amount of time.
Tim proposed to Dean Deborah LaVine about ways to promote and honor both the film faculty and staff artists with a School of Filmmaking Faculty and Staff Art Exhibit Series. I understand the initiative has since included Anna Sutton opening a faculty and staff meeting with a poem from her book, and Dolores Watson to do storytelling. Your suggestion has brought joy to many and may spur other divisions to be more inclusive of staff artists!
"I really appreciate the way Sherry takes care of us in the New Media Building. There's a whole lot of random stuff that happens in that building, and she always makes sure we're looking good. I'm glad she's here."
"For over 18 years Lynda Lotich has served UNCSA and the Thomas S. Kenan Institute for the Arts – most recently as the Interim Executive Director of the Kenan Institute from June 15, 2020, through Aug. 13, 2021. Despite the challenges and uncertainties that came with the global pandemic and transition in Institutional leadership, each member of the staff has been supported and offered an opportunity to excel. Lynda is unwavering in her commitment to the missions of UNCSA and the Kenan Institute, as well as the well being of the Institute’s staff and constituents. Staff comments are:
- "During a time when much of the world was carrying a heavy load, Lynda helped to lighten the load that I carried, as a staff member and also as a local artist. I received an unexpected but much needed level of support both personally and professionally from Lynda and could not have asked for more, as her concern for our personal peace improved our overall productivity.”
- “Lynda Lotich is an extraordinary Supervisor and human being. She sets the culture of the Institute by modeling attention to detail, empathy, and an incredibly reliable work ethic. I've felt extremely privileged these past years to work under her mentorship. Even when faced with the most difficult of challenges, Mrs. Lotich is composed and steadfast. She is a trusted confidant in the workplace and a champion for her staff.”
- “I am very fortunate to have been under Lynda Lotich’s leadership, especially over the past year. She has been so supportive and understanding of our needs as we all navigated our changing climate.”
- “Lynda has guided the Kenan Institute with her impeccable timing, her infinite wisdom, her witty sense of humor and her steadfast demeanor. I have learned from her the art of saying just enough and asking the right questions and the importance of singing a jazzy rendition of “Happy Birthday.” She has shouldered many burdens without ever letting on how much they weighed her down, while also sharing those of the staff without complaint. I will be forever grateful to her.”
- “Lynda has given me much needed and appreciated advice on topics ranging from managing grants and programs, to how to ask thoughtful questions to get the information we need to get to move the Kenan Institute and its programs forward.”
From all of the staff, and from the Institute’s new Executive Director Kevin Bitterman, we say thank you to Lynda for her extraordinary service."
"The grounds were beautiful for the chancellor's installation -- from the hanging baskets and the flower beds to the mowed lawn. It was lovely."
"Andrea is the sole administrative support associate in the Facilities Management Division, which has over 60 employees. In addition to working daily with the associate vice chancellor of Facilities Management, improving work processes and solving problems, Andrea's tireless work oversees all purchasing and P-Card transactions for Facilities, Building Environmental Services and Grounds. Andrea also communicates with the entire University about anything related to Facilities, from School Dude tutoring and tracking down mystery shipments to emergency requests. There are many more responsibilities to Andrea's role other than what I mentioned already, so she is extremely busy all the time keeping up with our ever changing priorities, but what I think Andrea does to go above and beyond her heavy workload is that she has taken on the additional responsibilities of being interim business coordinator for the last four months. Not only has she kept that position functioning, but she has made improvements to the processes of the vacant role as well. Andrea works overtime and on weekends to handle the responsibilities of both jobs and in the short time as interim, she has made significant and long needed improvements to the financial spreadsheets for the capital budget. Andrea is thoughtful, tenacious and fair in her work and in her interactions with other employees. She has become a very important and valuable go-to person for our department and she is very deserving of a Standing Ovation!"
"In the midst of their regular duties, Craig and Will have both worked with the Registrar's Office to implement new processes/reports that have shaved hours and in some cases days off processing time in specific areas. In turn this allows the Registrar's Office to serve the arts schools and divisions, as well as, students and enrollment management in a more efficient manner as these processes have university wide impact."
"We did an AMAZING job cleaning High school, Lower Housing and Center Stage Apartments. Two years ago we were a team around 25 employees during summer. This year it was only four of us and we managed to do everything that was assigned to us and more. I wanted to take this time to CONGRATULATE this AWESOME TEAM !!!"
"Bill is helping our department implement three detailed projects simultaneously. Throughout the process, he has been extremely responsive, anticipatory of potential problems, and has suggested solutions to avoid issues. He has spent untold numbers of hours to make these projects a reality. Without Bill, none of these projects would be possible!"
Elizabeth Davis is helpful in enabling groups, departments, or schools to collect data using Qualtrics. For those of us who have a UNCSA Qualtrics account, Davis can be counted on to quickly responds to questions or to jump on a Teams meeting to share screens. She investigates ways that we don’t have to re-invent surveys. While people may come to her frustrated, she is calm and encouraging and works with others to help them achieve their goals. In addition, she suggests ways that we can communicate the survey results back to the group or to the campus. If you hear about Qualtrics training, it is usually in an email that Davis has sent."
"With the onslaught of UNCSA moving to Dynamic Forms, Dave LaVack’s workload has increased greatly -- yet he still maintains his excellent customer service focus. He is helpful in thinking of ways to leverage the logic of this form system to ask just the questions that the person needs to answer. He is a team player and a valued, highly participatory member of anything of which he is a part."