Past Nominees

april 26

Mark Aronhalt and Ben Grover

Ben and Mark, as we refer to our IT team, are dedicated professionals at the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design. They face numerous demands (all urgent in the user’s eyes) and daily challenges to keep our vast inventory of computers and our network running trouble-free. They address our needs with personalized attention and utmost courtesy, regardless of how trivial the request. In addition, they go above and beyond, for example sometimes staying beyond office hours, and even making an occasional courtesy house call to assist elderly faculty emeriti solve computer problems. Despite the usual ticket submission needed to access IT services and being short-staffed, they are ever-willing to make an unscheduled stop along the way to their appointed tasks. If not for this willingness to go above and beyond, our jobs as students, staff, faculty, and administrators would be difficult if not impossible. They recently helped coordinate the move of some 200 computers to a brand-new building. (Gerard D’Souza – Resource Economics & Management)

Brett Lemine

You can't help but notice all the beautiful flowers, trees and neatly trimmed lawns on WVU's Evansdale campus. If you've ever wondered who helps make this campus look so spectacular, look no further than Facilities and Brett Lemine. Brett takes pride in his work by ensuring WVU's campus remains clean from trash and debris and always looking beautiful. As a landscaper, he is responsible for trimming and mowing greenery, planting flowers and trees, removing snow, and keeping the sidewalks and walk ways safe. Brett makes it a personal mission to preserve nature and the beauty surrounding WVU because it's something he loves, not just his job.


Nicholai DeHann

Nicholai DeHaan is kind, patient, helpful and knowledgeable. He is an expert in the scheduling of courses and always has the answer. In an area that would frustrate many due to the numerous questions that must be asked on a daily basis as well as the need for perfection when entering information into the system, he is always soft spoken and never harsh or inpatient. He also offers to provide direction via written material or video. Because of him my knowledge for adding new courses, deleting obsolete courses, as well as updating the course schedules has vastly improved. It is a pleasure to work with Nicholai.


Lesa Hunter

Lesa works as a Program Assistant II at University Relations. She is much more than the name explains. Lesa handles the invoices and receipts for a large part of University Relations. She is so patient with UR staff and with the vendors. She is very diplomatic to help us through some complicated billing issues. She also greets people as they enter the UR office, handles the mail, keeps track of everyone and is quite the cheerleader for the office. She is the person who gets the get well cards signed, organizes a pot luck lunch, or finds a meeting location for a lost person in the building. We appreciate her positive attitude and great disposition to make everyone's day a little better.

Eric Murphy

Through his work and dedication, Eric Murphy in WVU Extension Service has moved fathers of Monongalia County and the West Virginia community to higher heights. Through the iFather program, Eric, along with other community and University partners, have increased fathers of children in pre-K through first grade physical and academic engagement. Eric has taken great strides in providing opportunities for fathers to learn health ways of interacting with their little ones. In eight different elementary schools across the county, fathers are learning ways to increase positive social skills, greater academic awareness, coping skills and problem solving skills. Fathers participate in eight to nine different 6-8 minutes stations that are fully interactive with fathers and their children. Each iFather event has doubled in attendance since last year with numbers that are ranging from 50 fathers to more than 120 fathers in some of the elementary schools. (Bernard Jones, College of Education and Human Services)


Brent Clark

Brent is an extremely efficient and effective director of WVU 4-H Extension. He has many responsibilities and commitments each day and many of those start in the early morning hours and last very late into the evening. Brent is the embodiment of what it takes to be a successful director. He is kind, caring and considerate and always has time and makes time for anyone who needs him at any time during the day. WVU 4-H Extension is a better off today because of his leadership and commitment to each and every person and program under his watch. He is very dedicated and driven and always has the children, families and communities best interest in mind. He works tirelessly to fulfill the mission of WVU 4-H Extension.

Charles Loy

Chuck Loy in the welding shop is a hard worker. He is a pay grade 11 but performs the role and duties of a pay grade 13. Chuck will give 100 percent effort on any project assigned to him. 

Michael Joplin, Barbara Hamrick, Jamie Thomas and staff

My favorite "climbing higher" WVU employees have always been Facilities and Services. I watch them every day, and try to express my thanks and gratitude, in conversation, for the excellent work they do. Tonight, I realized how spoiled we have become at the Mountainlair. Thank goodness for Michael Joplin, Barbara Hamrick and Jamie Thomas. Those are three pretty special Mountaineers. Whether they're setting up the Mountainlair Ballrooms with 400 chairs or taking a dry erase board to a student organization at a table in the Mountainlair - these professional WVU staff workers are so effective, efficient and kind. Each morning, I have been privileged to walk into a building with shiny floors, shiny glass and pristine restrooms. I also want to commend the groundskeepers. Every time I saw them shovel or brine or salt this past winter, I felt safer - protected and cared for. And the tulips, mulch and trees look so beautiful. It inspires us every day. What a privilege to work at WVU and these employees deserve all of our thanks, gratitude and love. It's so cool. So exceptional. Thank you, Michael Joplin and your great, great staff. 


Erika Dangler

Erika Dangler is a program specialist tucked quietly in the back of the third floor in the student services building. She is a super power who works diligently to ensure student success with our 1200+ HS ACCESS students. She maintains personal contact with students at midterm and throughout the semester. Erika created an ACCESS WVU Facebook account on her own time to stay in touch and post success stories that students, parents and teachers can share; she talks with parents to help explain and navigate WVU. She sometimes acts as the liaison between students and faculty when there are challenges. Erika he even helps cultivate Public school districts in our contiguous states interested in online and dual credit classes. She is the link to admissions and often the first contact a WV high school student has with WVU. Erika is the heartbeat of the ACCESS program. (Cheryl Bell - HS ACCESS/University Advising)


Ann Marie Hibbert

Ann Marie Hibbert is that outstanding colleague who all of us wish to have. She's an outstanding teacher, who never settles for the status quo and constantly strives to get better for her students. Her research record is enviable with a consistent flow of projects in the pipeline with one fascinating project after another. Her service to the profession, the University, the College, and the Finance Department are generous. As a departmental colleague, I am grateful for the time and the care she so quietly extends to assist our professional development.

Jason Markle

Jason Markle is a front end web designer at University Relations-Digital Services. Jason's work recently with the new Transportation website has been really commendable. Jason is patient, inquisitive and thoughtful with clients. His has a strong work ethic and is very dependable. Jason juggles many projects at the same time, while providing support to other web designers across campus. He is able to focus well on projects and never backs down from a challenge. He is an important member of the team at University Relations.

Jaclyn Murray

The Finding Wellness Program from WVU Medicine is an extraordinary program that creates a collaborative community that focuses on good health and well being. The entire staff works to uplift the participants and empower them to make good lifestyle choices. It is a pathway to healthy and positive living. (Jack Thompson – WVU Corporate Relations)


Rebecca Warnke

"If you have a question, you ask Becky in the Eberly College’s Department of History. If you need help, you ask Becky. She always makes me feel comfortable and welcome.”


Edward Beck

Edward Beck has always gone above and beyond at iDesign Classrooms. He will go out his way to ensure that classrooms are ready before they start. If a professor has an issue with the equipment, he will personally reach out to ensure that they are satisfied with the solution. If you work in ALH/PER, everyone knows who he is, and he is not afraid to crack some jokes. He is a generous person too. When Halloween is around the corner, he will purchase a big bag of candy and share it with his staff and hand it out to the day care that trick or treats in the building.

Pradeep Fulay

Did you known that WVU Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources has been churning out almost three NSF CAREER awards/year the past three years? Connect. Collaborate. Innovate. Three words you will most likely hear from Pradeep Fulay, associate dean of research at the Statler College. Since 2013 when he joined WVU from the National Science Foundation (where he was a program director), his deep understanding of federal funding agencies has helped improve grant success rates for Statler faculty. Last year alone, the Statler College attracted several external grants worth more than $500,000 each, a significant improvement over previous years. Federal young faculty awards/recognitions: 6 NSF +1 DOE CAREER awards before 2013; now 8 NSF CAREERs+1 other from 2013 to 2016. Fulay is making WVU climb higher by finding innovative ways to eliminate barriers and facilitate successful faculty collaboration. (Don Adjeroh, professor and associate chair, LCSEE - Statler College)


Timothy Dalton

Tim Dalton in the Facilities Management Plumbing shop has continually strived to improve his skills and support for the University. He has taken on the responsibilities of the lead technician in the Facilities Management Welding and Rebuild shop. His capabilities and the team work of the employees in his shop has increased Facilities Management efficiency and saved University costs.

Martha C.Yancey

The University has a gem in Martha C. Yancey, interim director and access services and resource sharing librarian. Always available to assist researchers in their quest for knowledge, Martha goes above and beyond to provide guidance to help them obtain needed materials for their projects. Her enthusiasm to support their mission, be it a student’s homework assignments or documents for a researcher's publication, is commendable. Recently Martha helped me locate an historical document that I considered beyond my reach. Her knowledge in the area of access services was invaluable to my work. WVU faculty, staff and students are fortunate to have Martha behind them, and we greatly appreciate her efforts to go above and beyond.


Brian Gillespie

Brian Gillespie was born and raised in Clay County. He is a WVU alumnus and has worked for Planning, Design, Construction and Scheduling for five years. I have worked with him on several projects very closely and never saw him take a short cut on a project. He accommodates the end user of the project to the full extent of the program. Talk with Brian for a few minutes and you will walk away feeling very hopeful. He is a fine young man. (Fred Athey – Planning, Design, Construction and Scheduling)

Megan Govindan

Megan Govindan is a tireless ambassador for access to real food in West Virginia. Similar to how an organic garden needs attention, care and nurturing, Megan is passionately dedicate to her work, improving access to real food for all West Virginias. This begins with her students. As an advisor and professor, she always goes above and beyond her call of duty. Megan also voluntarily joins boards and workgroups to ensure that real food is represented. Most notably, Megan understands the value of connection. Connecting students with opportunity, connecting farmers with viable markets, and connecting ideas to outcomes. Professor Govindan is a living example of what it means to Climb Higher.

Kay Newlon

Kay Newlon is always happy to help someone. She receives telephone calls from applicants and internal WVU employees. Her positivity is infectious and instrumental in being what Human Resources is and should be.


Stephen Belcher

For continually going above and beyond in representing ITS and WVU, and for his critical role in helping the new Beckley campus open on time, Stephen Belcher won the latest Role Model RockIT Award. As Assistant Director, he inspires and encourages his team. As a co-worker, he consistently demonstrates a bright, positive, can-do attitude. Steve repeatedly traveled to Beckley last year to ensure work on the new WVU Tech campus was done correctly and in time for its debut semester. He even arranged for 10 ITS volunteers to travel from Morgantown for two days to help sort, remove and recycle hundreds of tons of material in buildings across campus. He went to Beckley to personally provide walk-up support to students and faculty after working straight through Move-In weekend in Morgantown. Steve was also the Role Model runner-up this quarter, thanks to a second nomination shared with project manager Neil Jones. 

David Gersting

For improving the usability and security of two University systems, David Gersting won the latest Innovator RockIT Award. David developed a creative solution to help fight brute-force attacks against Research Computing’s servers. He developed an API that notifies our Palo Alto firewalls so they block attacks detected by fail2ban (a log file scanner). On launch day, it blocked 1,639 attacks. David also rebuilt the outdated FTP-Depot, which was built on legacy code and hard to patch. Extensive manual key-entry was required to set up accounts, creating a high risk of human error for a business-critical system. David moved FTP-Depot to Linux and made it redundant with two servers, meaning it remains available during maintenance. He taught himself a new program and used other tools to build a new web interface for users. David’s work helped make our systems more secure, and our FTP Depot service more efficient, sustainable and user-friendly.

Kenneth Hite

Kenneth Hite is a graduate assistant, advisor and lab manager within the Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering  He is currently working towards his PhD in engineering education. He hopes to create a path for other students who hope to pursue within that area. He is someone whom students approach whenever they have problems due to his warm personality. He has been an asset to faculty and staff. Kenneth has been updating lab material, revived the Amateur Radio Club and served as an advisor for Solar Decathlon, and several other senior design projects.

Sandra Jolliffe

Sandy Jolliffe in the Student Insurance Office goes above and beyond every day to assist students, parents and other units within the University. She goes the extra mile to ensure that those who contact our office not only have the information they need, but that they also feel cared for and supported. By taking the time to authentically interact with our callers and visitors, she is able to forge connections that help get to the root of, and address, a student's or parent's concerns. She is truly a model of excellent service

Diane Stewart

Dianne Stewart is a huge asset to the Office of Admissions. She is always willing to go the extra mile, and her drive and determination for student success pushes her colleagues to also go that extra mile when helping students. Dianne is the friendly face that you see when you first enter the Office of Admissions and she immediately puts students and parents at ease in the most stressful of situations. Dianne has a wonderful working relationship with the students who work under her. Some would consider her their "Office Mom." Their respect for her shows in their willingness to complete tasks and how hard they work. She is always willing to step up, help, and answer any questions anyone has. WVU is truly lucky to have Dianne Stewart on staff.


Katie Condon

Katie Condon is not only a fantastic colleague, but she is an exceptional supervisor and mentor in undergraduate admissions and recruitment. She is always pushing everyone to go above and beyond what is expected, think outside the box, and use their skills to the best of their ability. She always takes on any role that is asked of her and thrives in whatever that role entails. Her knowledge of admissions and recruitment is remarkable and she is always trying to see what we can do better to yield more students. In addition to being a full-time employee, Katie is also pursuing her doctorate in higher education at WVU. Katie's ambition is so extraordinary that she will be successful no matter where her career path takes her. We are so lucky to have her as a WVU employee.

John Lyonett

John Lyonett, interim director of WVU Extension-Energy Express, continually climbs higher and leads by example. John has been in the education field for nearly 40 years, and uses that experience to help both the children and adolescents of West Virginia. As an example of his commitment to this cause, John commutes from Weirton to Morgantown each day for work. He is the first in the office and one of the last to leave - beyond the time that he dedicates is the quality of his work. John strives, and pushes others to strive, for excellence. No project or task is too big or too small for him to roll up his sleeves. Whether it is entering data or conferring with state officials, John embodies the mission of this great land-grant university; to help create a better future for the citizens of West Virginia.

Dana Musick

Dana Musick, a senior administrative secretary in the College of Education and Human Services' Department of Learning Sciences and Human Development, has truly been "climbing higher" through her efforts to help kids and others in our region. Dana spends much of her spare time organizing fundraisers, including drives to provide Easter baskets for kids at WVU Cancer Center, donations for the Ronald McDonald house, and back-to-school supplies and winter coats for area children. Dana also organized a collection to support a local family at Christmas. Right now, she is working to avoid "going behind bars" for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Her bail is set at $334 to fund a day of MDA summer camp for a local child, but her goal is to raise $2,000. Learn more at http://www2.m 


Rhonda Coleman

Rhonda Coleman been with Extension Service for 35 years. Quietly, she is involved in many programs in our county. Her motto is, "It's about the kids." Every summer we have four Energy Express programs; this year increasing to five. She runs a summer feeding program at a local church which includes a day camp for five weeks in the summer, all free to families. She directs the Raleigh County 4-H Younger Camp and 4-H Older Camp. She is busy all summer. During the year she has 18 4-H clubs and leaders association. The iRespect program is being taught in several schools in the county during the school year. Rhonda has a soft heart for the kids, finding money for camp if they can't afford it. She keeps costs to a minimum, functioning on a shoe string budget, all the time staying in the background. She is amazing and finds her rewards in their eyes.

Katie Condon

Katie Condon is a great coworker, and sets an incredible example of professionalism and poise for the Office of Admissions student ambassadors she oversees. Katie serves as an ally, advocate and great professional example for her students and peers. We are all very lucky to work with her at WVU.

John Merrill

John Merrill from the Facilities Management Controls Shop continually shows his dedication to WVU. He responds to issues around the clock and can be depended upon to make sure issues are addressed. John is instrumental in making sure University events for all departments across campus have the necessary audio equipment set up to make the events successful. He is also responsible for setting up the audio and supporting graduation at the Coliseum each year. John's technical ability to trouble shoot and repair electronics equipment across the campus is an asset to the University. His ability to repair equipment vice replace equipment has saved the University thousands of dollars.

Michael Oscanyan

Mike Oscanyan has been doing a wonderful job of supporting the School of Dentistry. The School of Dentistry has gone through numerous changes over the last seven months, and he has been instrumental in making sure the schools IT needs have been met and satisfied. Mike has been singlehandedly supporting the IT needs of the School of Dentistry's Suncrest Town Center location. Mike's contributions are the reason that he is climbing higher.


Child section of Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry

The child section of the Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry has been welcoming and supportive since the first day I have started. There have been tireless efforts to collaborate and work together in attempts to provide the best quality of care to each and every child along with their families. The child section demonstrates and identifies the importance of family. The section has worked together to increase access of care and explores ways to better serve West Virginia.

Jess Davis

During finals week of fall 2016, eCampus had substantial reliability issues. The freshman engineering program needed a backup paper exam in the event that eCampus was down at a time when a final was to be administered. Jess worked hard to create the backup exam. It required that she download questions one at a time into a Word document. This was a tedious and time consuming process, and had to be done in one day. Jess patiently worked through it and put in extra effort to complete the job in time. I'm proud of her work and dedication. (Todd Hamrick – freshman engineering program, Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources)


Michael Mann

Dr. Michael Mann tirelessly puts others needs before his own. He is not only a mentor and colleague to many he is a friend to everyone. Dr. Mann never puts his needs first. He consistently makes sure the needs of the School of Public health, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, students and peers are met first. I can not imagine being a part of the School without his presence. He is not only generous with his time but he is extremely intelligent, motivated and tirelessly works to improve the academic experience for those who work with him and for his students. He also brings an enormous amount of education to the people of West Virginia in his pursuit to help our adolescent improve their health in WV schools. Dr. Mike Mann is the perfect example of integrity. If there were ever a person I would like to be more like, it would be Dr. Mann. (Toni Morris – School of Public Health)


Candy Cordwell

Candy Cordwell in the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources is one of those great staff persons that makes the outcome of everything she does look effortless, largely because of the huge amount of effort she puts into what she does. She does the heavy lifting behind all of the activities of the WV NASA SPACE grant consortium, from bi-annual meeting planning to managing multiple grant programs. As a board member, her professionalism has made my job much easier and she is greatly appreciated. (Melanie Page - VP Research)


Rickie Huffman

Rickie Huffman in the Office of Admissions is a constant example of an extraordinary team player. Always going the extra mile, she always puts others needs above her own. We are all so fortunate to work with such a strong and selfless individual.

Renee Nicholson

In addition to being an outstanding teacher and adviser, Renee Nicholson is helping to redefine what healthcare means in West Virginia through her popular narrative medicine research project at WVU’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Institute. The first project of its kind in Appalachia, Renee and her colleagues, Dr. Carl Gray and graduate assistant Whit Arnold, understand that there is more to medicine than treating disease. The patients that Renee works with have important things to say, but they do not always know how to tell their stories. So each week, Renee dedicates her time to helping patients express themselves, creating expressive narratives that they can share with their loved ones. At a time when they need it most, Renee provides patients with purpose, peace of mind, and a framework through which to view the significance of their lives.

Office of Student Services

The staff of the Ruth E. Kershner Office of Student Services works hard each day to help make sure that students within the School of Public Health are taken care of. The demands on these three ladies have continued to increase with the addition of a new undergraduate program for the school and yet they still manage to keep their focus on the students and ensuring that their key needs are being met. They work well together and support each other always. It's this teamwork that allows them to do the work that would normally require additional staffing to accomplish. Supporting each other, and supporting their students is what makes this small group uniquely special. Leah Adkins, Tara Davis and Megan O'Dell have worked well together and have made this office a place where students can go and seek support and assistance without judgement.

Scott Wolfe

After watching many soccer games this fall at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium, the field always appeared to be in great shape. Thanks to Scott Wolfe in athletics, it was green, smooth and had no divots. It always seemed like the playing surface was excellent and did not hamper the performance of the athletes at all. After watching the NCAA Championship game in California on television, I noticed that field was spotty, some areas looked almost barren and on some close ups large divots could be seen. Scott did an excellent job with the playing surface at Dick Dlesk Soccer stadium all fall. Glad to know that our field looks better than where the national championship game was played. Not only is our team the best, but Scott is the best too.


Daniel Brewster

Daniel Brewster is an outstanding educator, popular lecturer in the sociology department, and tireless advocate for the rights of LGBTQ+ people. For years, he has sponsored events to raise awareness about homophobia and transphobia. He has encouraged hundreds of WVU students to challenge their misconceptions about gay and trans people by combining use of popular culture, documentaries, presentations, and challenging dialogues. His willingness to engage these issues long before LGBTQ rights were recognized by (some) law and WVU policy means that he has been at the forefront of pushing our community to become better. As our campus climate remains intermittently hostile, Brewster's high profile in educational endeavors aimed at moving us forward has repeatedly put him at risk for harassment and disparagement. Now is the time for our community to recognize that his efforts to make us better put him at risk. But that risk does not stop him. (Cris Mayo – Director, LGBTQ+ Center)

Bob Huggins

WVU men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins is definitely the face of our nation. He is one of the sincerest people I have worked for, and his compassion for helping improve lives in Mountaineer country is remarkable. Coach Huggins goes above and beyond to support West Virginia University and the community. As a Stage IV Triple Negative breast cancer patient at the Mary Babb Cancer Center, I am impressed with coach Huggins' perseverance to raise awareness and funds for research, all while performing his role as our basketball coach. He has a great rapport with his players. He is a very loyal person and treats people with respect. He is a truly caring individual. He is a great leader for West Virginia University and the community. (Debra Williams – men’s basketball)


Michael Pallai

Mike Pallai is a dedicated member of Facilities Management at the Student Rec Center. He works tirelessly to keep the building as spotless, shiny and presentable as it was when it opened in 2001. Coincidentally, that’s the same year Mike started working there. Everyone who enjoys (and brags on) this health-centered showcase facility has Mike, and all of the committed Facilities Management crew members, to thank heartily.

Candice Stadler

Candice Stadler has been at WVU Tech for only one year and in her time here, she has accomplished many things, including: 
- increased effectiveness and efficiency of the department by sharing the systems and tools utilized by WVU
- increased the number of employers who attend career fairs
- increased student attendance and engagement at career events 
- established a graduate/professional school fair for students
- held many seminars and shared resources about career, interview and job search preparedness
- increased involvement with student recruitment events to engage students/families from day one
- providing support to students each week on the Beckley and Montgomery campuses.
Candice does all of these things because she cares deeply about our students. She has extensive experience in student affairs, is well respected by her peers and was recently named the WVASPA Distinguished Service Awardee. We are blessed to have her at WVU Tech’s Division of Student Life – Career Services Department. 
(Jen Wood Cunningham – WVU Tech, University Relations)


Burlene Forquer

Burlene Forquer shows excellent customer service and is always professional, polite and helpful when working with the University community for catering events. Burlene makes sure the coffee is there when you need it and our stomachs are happy at meal time. Please don't take my word for it, but contact Daniel Brewster about the Women of Color luncheon. Thanks to Burlene, as well as the following team players: Sharon White, Eric Fllburn (and staff) and Brad Messenger (and staff). 

Cathy Patterson

Cathy Patterson is amazing! She takes care of anything you need. Iif she doesn't do it herself she will make sure you are set up with the right person to make it happen. She doesn't know the words "not my job!" Thank you, thank you, Cathy, for all you do.


Selena Engebretson

Selena Engebretson goes the extra mile by handling the department of psychology's finances and also acting as a great liaison between principal investigators and the Eberly College's business office. In addition, she handles many tasks, from photocopying and travel reimbursements, to helping the graduate students sort out their healthcare options. The department is better because of her efforts.


Tracey Beckley

Tracey Beckley is a true leader. She instills collaboration and innovation across all facets of the Teaching and Learning Commons. Her positive outlook and willingness to develop partnerships does not go unnoticed. Tracey motivates those around her to be their best self without asking for anything in return. She truly makes West Virginia University a better place.

Nicholas Gardner

As the activities program manager for Potomac State College, I had planned to have a Thursday Night Football & Pizza Party in the Student Union and wanted to project the game on the big screen. Nicholas Gardner from Library Services got word that I needed help, so he took the initiative to contact me and offer his assistance. He met me in the Union and went over all the details of how to operate the system. Upon leaving, he gave me his personal cell phone number and told me to call him if I needed further assistance. Later that evening, I was unable to remember everything that Nicholas had told me earlier, so he drove back to campus that evening to assure that I was able to show the game on the big screen. Nicholas has proven to be a "team player" in the truest sense of the word. (Edward Brown – PSC, Student Life)

Kelly Hayes

For cleverly developing a SharePoint site that appears to the untrained eye to be a modern web app, Kelly Hayes was named an Information Technology Services Innovator. She singlehandedly designed a clever solution to a problem WVU LaunchLab faced: They needed to manage student's business ideas and coordinate information-sharing among students, professors and administrators. The system had to be accessible from anywhere yet ensure confidentiality. A vendor product was cost-prohibitive, but the LaunchLab needed to replace their manual, paper-intensive process. Kelly designed an intuitive web form in SharePoint for students to submit ideas. She then figured out a way to use the workflow to automatically generate a "business portal” or subsite for each idea. She also found a way for multiple students to be associated with an idea, dramatically improving the site's functionality. Kelly even designed an administrator view and an efficient way to push announcements and worksheets to each business portal.

Lorie Stowers and Pam Fields

Lorie Stowers and Pam Fields deserve to be recognized and thanked. Over the past few months, my workload has increased considerably at the School of Nursing. Thanks to Lorie and Pam, any time I needed a helping hand or assistance, they have always been happy to help. They both have gone above and beyond. Their help was and is greatly appreciated. (Cathy Cayton - School of Nursing)


Lilo Ast

Lilo Ast is soon retiring from more than 26 years of service to the WVU Office of Research Integrity and Compliance. Lilo works during her normal hours at the office, evenings, nights and weekends to ensure that research protocols are reviewed in a timely fashion and meet with the regulations and requirements surrounding Human Subjects' Research. The IRB obtained accreditation through AAHRPP during her tenure and has maintained that accreditation throughout her tenure, to her credit. She serves as the senior program coordinator; if we don't know the answer, we ask Lilo. The IRB would not be what it is today without her tireless effort, wealth of knowledge, and continued communication she maintains with research staff, IRB members and investigators. She is truly unique and irreplaceable. She is always willing and happy to go the extra mile for an investigator or research team member, which ultimately has attributed to the advancement of Human Subjects’ Research at WVU. 

Becky McDaniel

Becky McDaniel exhibits the utmost professional and personal attention to incoming exchange students at WVU. In her role in the Office of Global Affairs and Education Abroad, she treats each student as a family member, which puts the student at ease and leaves them with a first impression of feeling at home. Becky is the type of person that WVU needs in its front line areas so that everyone has the opportunity to have the experience of her knowledge and compassion for people no matter where they are from. She is the consummate right person for WVU. 

Charles McLauglin

Charles "Chuck" McLauglin serves as an accounting assistant in the Biology Department. His dedication to his work is shown through him responding to requests, providing valuable input to improve processes, and keeping a calm and mild demeanor when times get crazy. His work is valued and appreciated by those around him.


Lesley Cottrell

Since Dr. Lesley Cottrell has come on board at the Center for Excellence in Disabilities as our new director, she has transformed our work environment into a positive, collaborative and joyful place to work. She has involved all staff in center wide planning. She has actively encouraged activities that build teamwork and allow staff to socialize with each other and collaborate across programs. She has solicited feedback from staff about problems and priorities and has responded with solutions and strategies. She has empowered our employee council to address important issues. She has reached out to our national and state partners and funders to forge positive and collaborative relationships with them. And she has begun to lay down policies and procedures that are helping each of our programs better serve our clientele- who are children and adults with disabilities in West Virginia and our tri-state region.

Danielle Linsenbigler

Danielle Linsenbigler from the Office of Admissions recently visited University High School in Morgantown during a financial aid presentation for senior parents. She took the time to talk with me and other families before the financial aid Free Application for Federal Student Aid presentation and give me feedback and assistance in all my admission questions for my daughter. Unlike the other college representatives there, Ms. Linsengbilger stayed after the financial aid presentation and many parents who were unable to talk to her before the presentation had the opportunity to talk to her and find out more about WVU. For her excellent representation of WVU and commitment to students and families, I am nominating Danielle Linsenbigler for Climb Higher recognition.


Brian Butler, David Carrico, Steve Lamar, Charles Nicholas, Carl Rollison and Mark Simpson

I would like to recognize these employees for doing a great job delivering mail and being so dependable. They are truly a great group to work with and see each day. They are friendly, have great personalities and work hard. Please give them a high-five for the excellent job they do. Thank you and keep up the good work. (Ellen Williams – WVU Research Centers) 

Jean Ellsworth

Jeanie from Human Resources is very good at answering questions. Typically, she replies to emails within minutes. She also took the extra steps to correct mistakes that I found in my childcare reimbursements, one of which occurred in last fiscal year. She challenged the rules and tried her best to get special permissions to protect the employee's benefits. Taking her duties seriously and trying hard to correct any mistakes reported, Jeanie is a good guard for our employees' benefits and I personally appreciate her work. I feel that she is a role model for us all for building a caring and trusting working environment at the University. 

Janet Hunt

Janet Hunt is our assistant dean for program development and operations and a teaching assistant professor in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. She's a cheerleader for the School of Public Health and its mission: "to improve the health of West Virginians through innovation and leadership in education, research and service." Janet is one of the hardest working, caring, selfless people I know, always making time for students, faculty and staff. She goes out of her way to get to know people and was one of the first people to reach out to me when I joined the School's leadership team. Janet is respected by her peers because she is direct and offers solutions. She isn't afraid to try new ideas, and everything she does is for the good of our students. (Janey Cink - School of Public Health)    


Ken Price

Ken Price has only been at the College of Law a short time, but has made an amazing difference as our audio/video expert. Not only does Ken do his job well, but he is proactive to stave off problems. Of course, problems arise with AV equipment, but Ken figures out a way to help every faculty member use the technology her or she needs. He uses common sense to fix a lot of things or brings an issue to someone else's attention who can help. He asks relevant questions relating to events about what the AV needs will be and works to be sure the AV part of an event goes well. He communicates well and responds immediately when problems arise during classes or events. We were very fortunate when Ken came to work here and appreciate everything he does.

Keith Walton

Keith Walton has been at the College of Law for 20 years, and is our network manager. He has helped us grow as technology changed. Not only is he capable and knowledgeable, but he understands the needs of each person or department. There are those of us who are technologically-challenged and need everything explained and those who know what they're doing but just need a little help. He has worked with the project manager, contractor, and architects through our renovation and construction to make sure the technology in our classrooms, conference rooms, and other rooms are what we need and functional for us. We have been very lucky to have Keith here for so long and very much appreciate what he does for us.


ITS Information Technology Services

In a recent unplanned emergency outage of the Data Center, ITS (Information Technology Services) staff worked through the night on Thursday, Sept. 22 and then continued over the weekend to replace hardware. This outage covered many systems that students, faculty and staff use daily such as email, eCampus and others. A special thanks to the staff who worked diligently to resolve the issues and bring systems back online. 

Bernard Jones

Bernard Jones is the program director of assessment for educator preparation in the College of Education and Human Services, and formerly the graduate program coordinator in the Department of Special Education. Dr. Jones has a collaborative approach to problem solving. He is passionate about improving the educational outcomes of all PK-12 children and training future teachers to be effective educators. Dr. Jones readily accepts any challenge brought to him and eagerly completes any task to improve educational opportunities for future teachers. He is actively engaged in service to our community, and goes above and beyond in his dedication to our land grant mission. He is a true team player. We are lucky to have him in the College of Education and Human Services.


James Kosik

I came to Health Sciences Center to do two projects and Jamie has gone above and beyond to have himself and his whole department help get it completed in record time. There is never a "no" or "not our job” from the HSC Facilities Management team. It’s always, "what can I and my team do to help?" We did the dining renovation is 92 days, and that would not have happened without him and his entire team.

Kimberly Mocniak

Kim is a respected and valued College of Education and Human Services employee. In her role as program assistant for the Office of Advancement in the CEHS Dean's Office, she goes above and beyond every day to not only fulfill her job responsibilities, but also to exceed expectations. She is giving of her time and her talents to help others in the office in need without question. She comes to the office every day with an infectious positive attitude and a drive to help move our college forward any way she can. Our office would not be successful without her thoughtfulness, willingness to do more and to always "go first.”


Cindy Drumm

Cindy Drumm is a dedicated professional in Student Support Services/TRIO who works hard to support the students she serves. She never forgets they are our priority and that fact guides her decisions and focus. She is a firm but fair and compassionate leader who is respected by all those with whom she works. She understands the importance of collaboration and is an enjoyable person with which to work because she is honest, kind, has an exceptional work ethic, and integrity of character beyond question. You always know you can count on Cindy, and that she'll go the extra mile for students and colleagues no matter the issue. Cindy has undoubtedly changed the lives of many of the students whom she has served. She has really made a difference to the WVU community and beyond by exemplifying the true Mountaineer spirit of dedication, hard work, loyalty, and service. 

Natasha Dubansky

As a colleague, I notice Natasha's hard work day in and day out. She is always willing to take on more opportunities and asks if others need help completing tasks, especially during busier times. She's been contributing a lot recently being a great team player, which is why I think she deserves recognition. (Mary Chupa – Human Resources) 


Jay Allen

Jay Allen is the assistant director at University Relations/Digital. Jay recently celebrated his 20th year of service with West Virginia University. Jay is very thorough in his work with attention to detail. Jay has worked on numerous applications for the University over the years including the majors database, the Parents Club app, A-Z index and others. In addition to that, Jay served as a system administrator and served as the project manager for the move to Amazon Web Services for WVU's content management system. He also helps with supervision of the team and is highly professional. Jay is an excellent writer and a very conscientious worker who is dedicated to keeping WVU's websites and applications operative.

Marion McClure

Each year Adventure WV puts more than 1,000 incoming freshmen students through its summer Orientation Trips program. These programs allow students to learn more about their state and campus community, while exploring their transition to college in an adventurous, small-group setting. Discussions center on students' hopes and fears for college, goal setting and strategies for success, being an inclusive member of the community, and making healthy decisions. These trips involve thousands of hours of planning, logistics, marketing, leader recruitment, leader training, and much more. While it takes a strong team to pull this feat off each summer, it takes an even stronger team manager and director to keep it flowing smoothly and successfully. Adventure WV Assistant Director for Orientation Trips Marion McClure is this woman. The success of the AWV Orientation Trips are a tribute to the hours and energy she has dedicated to WVU students. Thank you Marion. (Patricia Chan – Adventure WV)

Kyle Noreen

Kyle Noreen demonstrates his commitment to the success of WVU on a daily basis. As a coach in the Office of Student Success, his duty is to give students the personalized attention they need and the motivation to help them reach their full potential. I have been privileged to see first hand, that his actions aren't due solely to the compliance with the guidelines of his position, but because he genuinely cares about the accomplishments of his fellow students. From tutoring students in need to working on tasks such as time management and study skills, he is able to relate with students on an in-depth level and use that to help them achieve their goals. His qualities exhibit a great role model for his coworkers and a true Mountaineer by leading by example. He shows that without teamwork, this University and its people would not shine as bright as it does.


Denzil Blosser and Zenaba Qadeer

Denzil Blosser, the Davis College's physical plant engineer, and Zenaba Qadeer, a project manager for Facilities Management, have worked together for years now to bring to life the new Agricultural Sciences Building. Their tireless work has been tremendous and tremendously effective and above-and-beyond. The entire College is grateful. Together, they have Climbed Higher.

Mike Boyce

I would like to take this opportunity to recognize the work Mike Boyce at the Davis College School of Natural Resources put forth to make the recent meeting of the Eastern Research Forest Managers such a success. The meeting was attended by 27 forest managers and forest staff representing 16 universities from Georgia to Maine and Minnesota. In addition to his regular daily duties, Mike's work hard to coordinate meeting agenda, speaker, transportation, and more paid off with attendee remarks like the following:

"Thanks for a great meeting, it was fantastic! Enjoyed talking with everyone and seeing what is going on in another part of the country. Also, pass along our thanks to your student crew that helped ferry us around all week and enjoyed talking with them."

Mike took on this project with his usual enthusiasm and dedication. Thank you. Well done.

David Fulaytar

Dave is amazing at his job. He is fastidious and works tirelessly to ensure that the Injury Control Research Center operates smoothly from an administrative perspective. He shoulders a lot of responsibility. He comes in early and stays late into the evening, and never complains. He is always pleasant and approachable. He truly deserves this recognition.

T. Anne Hawkins

T. Anne Hawkins’ amazing energy, organizational talent, and intense commitment have enabled the LGBTQ+ Center to start on a firm foundation. As founding interim director and made sure all the LGBTQ+ Commission’s plans for the center were ready to be actualized. She watched over all the details of getting the space ready and she stayed in constant contact with LGBTQ students, faculty, and staff to reassure them that the services and space they wanted would be available as soon as possible. Her skills in counseling come to fore in all of these tasks--she understands how to work with people in a caring fashion and she is equally adept at inspiring them to make their goals a reality. She is dedicated to ensuring that LGBTQ students are welcomed, recognized, and supported at WVU and is able to help us all understand how crucial that is to our institution.

James Johnson

James in Multicultural Programs always has such a positive attitude. He never meets a stranger and always smiles and says “hello” to everyone he sees. He makes everyone feel welcome. His public relations for WVU is fabulous. Someone like this can make your day just by smiling and a friendly gesture. He is so good at welcoming and making others feel good strangers as well as friends. I wish we had more people with his attitude on campus. He is like that friendly concierge at an upscale hotel. (Burlene Forquer – WVU Dining Services)

Rob Moyer

Not only did Rob Moyer work with pride and loyalty for Facilities Management at West Virginia University in Morgantown for more than a decade, but he has been working diligently in Beckley and Montgomery setting up the transition of campuses for West Virginia University Institute of Technology. He's friendly to all who approach him, he's a hard worker who is always planning and preparing in advance, and he finds solutions to each obstacle that comes his way in the transition. Rob Moyer is a true example of the words in Hail, West Virginia: "Let college spirit rule, we'll join and give our loyal efforts for the good of our old school." He keeps the spirit of all three campuses alive and never gives up. It's an honor to be his colleague.

Cara Sedney

Dr. Cara Sedney exemplifies the best qualities of a doctor, a surgeon, a person, and a Mountaineer. She goes above and beyond to ensure her patients in neurosurgery receive compassionate care and that her residents receive an outstanding professional education. A native of Maryland, she completed medical school, residency, and fellowship programs at WVU, while also completing a master's degree in bioethics and health policy at Loyola. She works tirelessly through long hours and tough cases and still presents a positive and uplifting attitude in the work place and in life. In addition to her demanding workload, she conducts research related to health care disparities around the world but also on those that directly impact our region. As a talented and passionate surgeon she truly is a Mountaineer that is climbing higher.

Michelle Shockley

Michelle J. Shockley goes above and beyond her required job duties at the Student Recreation Center. She instills skills not normally learned in a classroom setting, including; organization, communication, office etiquette, and professionalism to student workers, Club Sports and Intramural participants who work in and around the Rec Center. She works closely with Club Sports advisors, presidents, and student members. She’s a huge advocate for Club Sports students and is a great listener and problem solver. Michelle’s outgoing enthusiasm and ability to laugh and joke, provides a pleasant experience for all students. Michelle goes the extra mile to assist students, coworkers and members of other departments in various ways. Michelle has worked for various departments within the University, and has developed great relationships, which makes her the person everyone goes to for help. She is a loyal, dedicated and valuable employee of WVU.

Travis Stimeling

Dr. Travis Stimeling deserves Climb Higher recognition because he is highly regarded by his peers and colleagues in musicology at an international level. Dr. Stimeling’s original scholarly endeavors have had a significant impact on the life of the School of Music, the College of Creative Arts, and the University at large, as well as on the field of country music studies. Ranging from the publication of important monographs and articles, his winning prestigious grants for research and teaching, his impressive collection of sources and interviews for his ongoing Nashville Sound project, his interviewing musicians from across Appalachia for an important oral history on West Virginia musicians, his establishing and leading tremendously popular music ensembles that engage WVU students and West Virginians across the state, and his dedicated participation in WVU’s Mountaineer Week, Dr. Stimeling’s research and teaching profile is exception al and his enthusiastic demeanor is both inspiring and infectious.

Steve Watkins

Steve Watkins, a director at Information Technology Services is an example to everyone at WVU. His usual gear includes a smile on his face as well as two backpacks, cable, a phone and ipad scanners in his hand. Steve worked tirelessly in the weeks before school to finish so many projects including work at WVU Tech and the main campus. Steve seemed to be everywhere the first week of school -setting up computers, making sure the network was functioning in the residence hall rooms, fixing the cable student TVs, installing cameras, helping with mobile scanning devices at events, and the list goes on. He is beyond devoted, he is "true blue and gold."


Joel Brown

Joel Brown at University Relations-Marketing is a huge part of the imagination and creativity behind many events at WVU. Welcome Week is one of those multi-event packages that Joel has envisioned. Mountaineer Midway, Monday Night Lights and FoodFest were three of the main events that were Joel's focus this week. He is all about fun and making sure that students have a memorable experience. If you haven't met Joel, find that opportunity because his laugh is infectious and his work ethic is enormous. Joel embodies the true spirit of being a Mountaineer.

Susanna Donaldson

Dr. Susanna Donaldson, an assistant professor in the Eberly College in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology is a dedicated individual. Dr. Donaldson, volunteered for FoodFest and FallFest on Tuesday evening for a long shift. She is definitely a Mountaineer in every sense because she was determined, hard-working and friendly. I asked her why she volunteered and she explained that she really likes to work with students not only in the classroom but in other settings as well. Susie is at the top of the list as one of the many, many committed and faithful faculty here at WVU.

Jason Rine

Jason always goes above expectations with all the projects he is involved in at WVU Extension Service. He strives to give all the children involved in camps, activities, clubs and any other projects the very best experience that he can offer. He has inspired many community members to get involved and therefore inspire others. His collaboration efforts with other counties and community members have grown 4-H, STEM, Cloverbuds, Energy Express, the community gardens, camps, committees, PROSPER, nutrition, and many other programs to new levels in Brooke County. He motivates others around him to be better people and is a great person to work with.

Kellyn Smith

Kellyn Smith has recently assumed the role of Associate Director in the B&E Center for Career Development. Kellyn has been with the WVU-CCD for more than two years now and in her time with us, has affected the way we provide services to students and alumni exponentially. She has been instrumental in the development of new programs that will assist our graduates to be more competitive in the market and in employer engagement strategies across the university. Kellyn's commitment to the success of our students and employers is unprecedented and deserving of recognition. She exemplifies a level of professionalism that should be both commended and emulated across WVU. Kellyn Smith represents our mission for Mountaineers Go First on a daily basis. (Jennifer Bellucci – College of Business & Economics, Center for Career Development)

Barry Stephens

Barry is an academic advisor in Resource Management. His role is to serve as an undergraduate academic advisor, which he does with distinction. However, he does much more, consistently going out of his way to step up and assist others. For example, during our move to a new building, he helped move furniture, helped others get settled, and even set up computer systems. He is also our resident problem-solver, fulfilling a critical role that goes beyond his job description, such as acting as our resident math tutor. He assists with student recruitment, which often means having to work on a weekend or an evening, an assignment he cheerfully takes on. He is dependable, helpful, and a delightful addition to our support staff. His impact goes beyond advising and mentoring our students. When the going gets tough as it does for some of them, Barry gets them going! (Gerard D’Souza – Resource Management)


Welcome Week 2016 & State Fair of WV volunteers

A big "thank you" to everyone who helped to make Welcome Week 2016 a success for our University community. From planning, to execution and clean up - it was a true team effort. IT, Student Life, Arts & Entertainment, Facilities, Transportation, Service & Learning, Adventure WV, Parents Club, the Alumni Association, the Provost Office and the President’s Office are among those that volunteered countless hours. It has been all-hands on deck and there is no doubt students (and their parents) will look back on this with excitement and appreciation. In addition, many have spent countless hours with our partners at WVU Extension planning and then volunteering at the WVU Building at the State Fair of West Virginia last week and this week. Let's go!


Anita Garten

In the life of a student, an academic advisor is very important to success. Students need someone who truly cares for them. Anita Garten, a developmental advising specialist in the College of Education and Human Services, has been instrumental in the success of many students pursuing child development and pre-speech majors. Anita goes above and beyond to provide the best advice to her students, has up to date knowledge of the Academic Common Market, and in a kind and friendly manner, offers the students the best choices for scheduling, and long term advice and career choices. As a coworker, Anita is truly an asset to the team and contributes great ideas, is fun to work with, and is a caring and helpful friend to all. A person like Anita, who is reliable and consistent is someone who Climbs Higher every day.

Erica Martin

Erica Martin is always working diligently and I feel she deserves to be recognized for all of her hard work. (Morgan Boyles, Social Work)

Harry Montoro

Harry Montoro has a very demanding job at West Virginia University. As the Freedom of Information Act Officer in the Office of the Vice President for Legal Affairs and General Council, he has to deal with members of the public and with nearly every department at WVU to locate records and then make a legal decision that may need to be defended in court. In this roll he serves as a middle man who gets hit from both sides. Members of the public who want records and don't always provide exact information on what they want, and University departments that don't always understand the legal process and sometime see Harry as the bad guy. This is an extremely hard position to be in, but Harry works hard at this every day and always keeps a positive attitude. Thank you for all the work you do Harry. (Walter Hardy, WVU alum)

Gretchen Riggs

Gretchen Riggs in Animal and Nutritional Sciences embodies what it means to be a productive, steady, and positive staff member. She is always available to answer faculty questions and provide support to our students. No matter what the workload, she quietly performs. Gretchen is hands-down one of our most valuable division members and deserves recognition for everything she does to make our jobs easier.


Sara Bishop

For outstanding work and leadership in the “Goodwill City” initiative, Sara Bishop won the Information Technology Services RockIT Award for Outreach. Goodwill City aims to improve sportsmanship and the experience of opposing athletic teams' fans. Sara was interviewed by the Dominion Post this past spring about how the ambassadors reach out to visiting alumni groups and ensure that ambassadors are there to greet them when they arrive. The Oklahoma Sooners told media after their first visit that they’d been slightly worried about bringing fans to Morgantown, but they had a great experience with positive greetings and offers of help. Then they returned with their families. The group sends letters to the editor of opposing teams’ hometown newspapers to ensure fans know they are welcome, and Athletics has asked the ambassadors to expand from just football to basketball and baseball. Sara makes a difference for WVU, the community and the region.

Robert Hasting

For instilling the values of collaboration, initiative and imagination in an Advanced Support team that only formed two years ago and ensuring cross-training, Robert Hastings was named a Role Model RockIT Award winner by peers in Information Technology Services. Robert is a quiet leader who inspires others and follows through on commitments. He listens carefully for areas where his team can contribute, even if they haven’t been asked. Robert also redefines success by constantly improving his skills. For example, Rob was not overly confident when he had to communicate in writing, but he often needed to communicate with faculty and University leaders. He wrote and rewrote messages, seeking feedback and suggestions, until his writing became polished, clear and professional. Rather than trying avoiding a weakness or delegating work, he committed to change. Rob should inspire us all to do our best possible work and to help others achieve thei r goals.

William Pilger

For coming up with coding solutions that improved WVU researchers’ experience with the funding administration tool WVU+kc (Kuali), Bill Pilger was named a RockIT Award winner for innovation by peers in Information Technology Services. Bill transformed the user experience from "agonizingly slow" to "pleasantly fast." He also redesigned the dashboard to speed up searches. His code has been contributed back to the Kuali community for other institutions to use. One of his two nominations said, “Bill has proven himself able to tackle the toughest, most difficult issues presented. His solutions are clean and clever, while ensuring that everything he does is finished 100 percent and properly designed. He is always thinking about the big picture, even when his piece of the puzzle may be small and focused. His designs and code are always very effective, and he is a developer to rely on when the going gets tough.”


Sarah Gould

Sarah Gould is a senior communications specialist for University Relations-Editorial. Sarah's writing is credible and believable with a voice that is consistent. Sarah takes confusing and disorganized ideas and brings clarity and focus to the story. She is an expert at writing for the web. Above all, Sarah is reliable and follows through to the end on assignments. She is considerate and thoughtful of others. Sarah is a very good communicator when writing for student communication. She has a fantastic sense of humor. WVU is extremely fortunate to have such a dedicated staff member.

Sarah Ma

Sarah Ma's unwavering dedication to both incoming and prospective international students in the WVU Office of Admissions is incredibly admirable. Always willing to go the extra step, she is an asset to not only admissions but also the University when it comes to international recruitment. Her hard work and dedication will be seen at the University for years to come. We are truly lucky to work with such a talented individual.


Janice Johns

Janice Johns in Facilities Management helps everyone that she possibly can. She puts forth the highest effort and shows that she would do the same as she asks of her employees. No matter the time of day, if you have a question, she will always answer, and if you need help she will make sure you are able to get it. Also, Janice shows that she appreciates her crew and recognizes them when they go above and beyond. (Joseph Graham, Facilities Management)

Jason Kapcala

Jason Kapcala in the Office of Accessibility Services embodies the essence of what it means to be a Mountaineer. He is caring, fair and thoughtful while striving to climb higher. His leadership skills entice his coworkers to strive for their new personal best daily. He continually puts WVU students, faculty and staff ahead of himself, and is always seeking new ways to improve upon our already advanced servicing practices. Jason "Kap" Kapcala is always appreciative of the effort put forth by his team through acknowledging the hard work from everyone involved. Not only is Jason climbing higher, he is a true leader. His team is gathered behind him and climbing higher as he leads the way. He is focused on the Office of Accessibility Services and the transcriber interpreter program going first along with WVU.

Bryan McCannon

Bryan and I joined the faculty in 2015 in the Department of Economics. During this time I have seen a marked change in the quality and attitude of the students in the department. He brings positive energy, always. Moreover, Bryan is currently working on a microfinance project in the most HIV/AIDS impacted parts of rural Uganda in order to improve the lives of these gravely affected people. He is a constant force for positive change through his action and leadership, even though his leadership is often silent and through actions, not words. By traveling to Africa and working with these populations, he is actively teaching these populations financial literacy and mechanisms to being self-sufficient. His intent in this project, and I believe in much of his life, is to use knowledge and positive energy to invoke change. He truly emulates the full capacity of the academy.

Delores Richards

Delores Richards works in custodial operations at WVU Facilities Management. She always goes out of her way to help her crew and others. Delores is a great leader.


Johnny Kocher

Johnny Kocher has worked in WVU Housing and Residence Life for a long time. He started out as a night staff student worker and an RA, became a night staff manager, and eventually became a residence life specialist, commanding an entire staff in Bennett Tower. He is now one of the most experienced at his position with WVU as he transitions to Oakland Hall this year. His contribution to WVU as a whole has been stellar over the past 10+ years. He recently led a group of six student representatives from WVU RHA to the NACURH conference in Delaware. As soon as he returned from that trip, he traveled with his National Guard unit to southern parts of West Virginia that have been devastated by flooding and has been leading relief efforts since. Lieutenant Johnny Kocher is a faithful patriot, a loyal West Virginian, and a true blue Mountaineer.

Alexis McMillen

Since the flooding began in southern West Virginia, Alexis McMillen, assistant director of the WVU Center for Service and Learning, has worked diligently to coordinate with student government, extension and other departments on campus as well as the Monongalia County CERT team, trucking companies, Volunteer WV and other stake holders to lead a coordinated volunteer effort at WVU to aid those in need. Alexis has stepped up to make this happen and has demonstrated leadership and the ability to build and leverage relationships with the community. She has been an excellent point person and has really stepped up to this challenge to do a fantastic job.


Eugene Felton

Even after graduation, Dr. Felton has continued to have an impact on my career by assisting me with any obstacles and being a reference. He was an amazing instructor and advisor when I was in the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design. He’s an overall awesome person for helping me even after I've graduated from the animal science and nutrition program. (Katelynn Smith (Harmon) - WVU graduate)

Rosemary Hriblan

Rosemary "Rose, not Rosie" Hriblan has been our rock and the go-to person in the Dean's Office at the College of Education and Human Services' for more than 28 years. She is the keeper of the flame at CEHS--the one person who always knows who to contact and how to get things done. Rose's primary role at CEHS is providing support to our two associate deans, but she will drop everything to help a student, her fellow workers, or a faculty member. Even more impressive, Rose does everything efficiently and accurately and always with a smile. Thank you Rose!


Judi McCracken

Judi McCracken at WVU Libraries goes above and beyond her duties everyday to make sure that WVU students, staff and faculty have the materials they need to complete research projects. Judi takes on the role of borrowing library materials from other libraries around the world and getting them delivered here. A countless number of projects and papers would have gone uncompleted if it weren't for Judi's tireless and thankless work. Thank you Judi.

Leslie Riggin

Leslie Riggen joined the College of Law community less than a year ago and has made a huge difference. She provides support to five administrators in several different areas. She's capable, efficient and a hard worker. She thinks ahead, is proactive, willing to help with projects and has a great sense of humor. You can depend on her to get the job done. Leslie has used her experience with students, her maturity, and common sense to help the dean's office and other administrators with various projects big and small. It's a pleasure to work with her.


Judy Henry, Ginger Larew, Jaime Harbert and Marianne Courtney

The Ordering and Receiving Unit has been awarded the Team Project Staff award by the WVU Libraries. I would like to say thank you for all their hard work in achieving this recognition. Judy is my rock. Marianne is the ordering engine that can. Ginger had to do a 360 on her job duties and take on all new duties. Jaime is my training partner as we learn from each other on GPO and cataloging duties.  I am proud to share this team award with them.  Sherry Steadman – WVU Libraries

Barry Stephens

Barry Stephens is an academic advisor par excellence. His main role is to serve as an undergraduate academic advisor. He does this most effectively. However, he consistently and enthusiastically goes out of his way to step up and assist others (faculty, undergraduate students, graduate students, etc.) with any academic issue or problem that arises, from advising assistance, to navigating course/catalog/graduation requirements, on-line course assistance, and one-on-one math tutoring. In this regard, he is also our resident problem-solver, fulfilling a critical role that goes beyond his job description. He assists with student recruitment, which often means having to work on a Saturday or an evening, an assignment he does not hesitate to take on. He is dependable, helpful, cheerful, and a delightful addition to our support staff. His impact goes beyond advising and mentoring our students. When the going gets tough as it does for some of them, Barry gets them going! Gerard D’Souza – Resource Management


Jennifer Bunner

I have only been working with Jennifer Bunner, director of Upward Bound at WVU Tech, for a short time, but have seen her in action through Upward Bound in the community since I was a teacher in Fayette County. She embodies what it means to be a Mountaineer, and for us here at WVU Tech, a Golden Bear. Jennifer leads by example and helps first generation college students stay on track to not only graduate, but go to a higher education institution. She worked alone last school year due to her counselor having to leave and still had a high success rate of graduates. Jennifer has been working double-time without complaint. She is viewed as a leader and others embody her positive attitude. WVU is privileged to have Jennifer as a part of its staff.

Jennifer Gillum

Jennifer Gillum is a professional technologist for University Relations who works on the digital signage called the 'Info Stations.' Jen is the programmer for the system but also helps with planning, installation and manages the process through beginning to end around hardware and software. Jen is creative, reasonable, and has a memory for details so necessary for this position. She works through some very tight deadlines. I have never seen her give up even when there are obstacles around scheduling, vendors, and paperwork. Jen has a life outside of work with her busy teenagers and is very involved at her church. Jen gives back to the community in many ways through her efforts at her children's school and her work with youth. She is also a very talented musician and vocalist.

Emily Seggie

Emily Seggie is a professional technologist for Admissions. Emily works on the CRM-the client relationship manager software for WVU. WVU is in the process of implementing the new software so Emily is heavily involved with that project. She has a variety of other assigned duties in Admissions but she is an expert on admission applications and knowing the answer to some questions that are complicated in nature around admissions. Emily is not afraid of hard work and shows that each day. She is also a team player which will bring you to the next paragraph. You may have thought you heard that name "Seggie" before. She is also the proud mother of Olivia Seggie, a player on the WVU women's basketball team.


Tracy Rice

While it is ideal to recruit faculty from other institutions, some disciplines have to develop faculty by “growing their own.” Professor Tracy Rice is an excellent example of how former WVU graduates can become budding junior academicians. In addition to her teaching responsibilities as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Physical Therapy, she maintains a busy clinical practice collaborating with the Department of Otolaryngology. Professor Rice serves as a regional expert in vestibular rehabilitation and helps coordinate throughout West Virginia. Professor Rice has also embraced the opportunities of academia, as she is completing an EdD in the CEHS. She is developing a national reputation and recently served American Physical Therapy Associations EDGE Task Force. Professor Rice is Climbing Higher and serving as a role model for current PT students while helping to meet the challenges set forth by Vice President Clay Marsh to improve the health of West Virginians. (Scott Davis - Human Performance and Exercise Science, Physical Therapy)


Vicki Hoover

Vicki Hoover in Family Student Resources has been instrumental in conducting the Kid's Safety and Fitness Expo over the last five years. During that time, the event has hosted more than 1,500 children and parents. Vicki's time and dedication to the expo is tremendous. She coordinates volunteers and vendors within WVU and the community. Our participation numbers continue to grow thanks to Vicki. The participants are very grateful for Vicki and the work on this event. Vicki Hoover truly exemplifies the "Mountaineer Spirit." (Bruce Brubaker – Student Rec Center)

Lisa Lipscomb

Lisa Lipscomb shifted from admissions as part of the new Office of Graduate Admissions and Recruitment when it was created two years ago. She brought with her the knowledge of Hobsons and application processing. Since then, Lisa has greatly grown and expanded her skills professionally. Beyond the exponential development of knowledge and skills, Lisa is personally a beautiful person inside and out. She goes above and beyond to help others. She is always sweet, positive, upbeat, and pleasant. Lisa is a team player and always makes everyone smile and feel important and happy. Her smile, input, and refreshing sense of humor bond the office team. She is dependable, dedicated, and authentic. I feel honored to have had Lisa part of our team. (Tracy Sheetz – Graduate Admissions and Recruitment)

Derek Schrock

Derek Schrock is very persistent, dedicated and upbeat. He has an outgoing personality and his ability to work with in athletics customers is unparalleled. It is because of his excellence in this area and his ability to handle a high-volume workload that Derek was nominated for Climb Higher recognition. He’s a team player who enthusiastically embraces change and has a firm commitment to exceeding customer expectations. It is not uncommon to receive praise from customers applauding Derek’s outstanding level of service and professionalism.

MAY 25

Jason Fahner

Jason helped establish connection with my tablet to WVU's intranet system. I use this to maintain communications in the field. He helped me through each step of the process. Jason was patient with someone not great on computers. (Ron Campolong - Facilities Management)

Charles McLaughlin

Charles "Chuck" McLaughlin has been with our department for over a year now as the accounting clerk III for the Department of Biology. He is an absolute integral part of our department. His knowledge in accounting management is beyond quality expertise. His attitude and personality with faculty, staff and students is exactly what WVU strives for. His position takes care of the procurement purchases and keeping track of all funds (state, grant and foundation) and being that Biology is the largest unit within the Eberly College, this is a task in itself! He does an outstanding job in taking care of the Department of Biology. He has been a great asset to our department. (Mickey Howell - Biology)

David Friend

David Friend is the Executive Director of Dining Services. From the dining halls to Culinary Creations to Jackson's Mill, there is hardly a person associated with WVU that hasn't eaten food prepared by Dining Services. David is well-liked and respected by all those with whom he works. He's a team player who always looks at the big picture. As a supervisor, David has put together an exemplary team. He makes sure his staff is well-trained and given the knowledge and information they need to do their jobs well. Dining Services has a large number of student employees, and David takes serious the responsibility of providing students with a meaningful work experience. David is an exceptional leader who has proven strong management can successfully be combined with compassion and kindness to create a well-oiled machine where everyone is a winner; students, clientele, and employees. Thanks to David for all you do.

MAY 18

Deborah Boone

Deborah Boone was my professor and advisor a few years ago. She still keeps in contact with me about ways to keep my education up-to-date and sends me birthday wishes every year. She always makes sure her students know the information, and will spend office hours helping those who need a little extra help. I still have her as an instructor for my continuing education courses to keep my West Virginia teaching certification renewed. She has guided me over the last month to make sure I sent all the required documents to enroll in the class through WVU. She is truly an inspirational figure in and outside the classroom. If there were more professors like her, the world of higher education would be so much better.

Colleen Harshbarger

Colleen Harshbarger is a leader at WVU at the WELLWVU Office of Wellness and Health Promotion. She enhances and recognizes the impact of total wellbeing on student performance and retention. She advocates across campus for wellness education and engages in dialog to evoke students to lead a healthier and happier well experience while here at WVU. She continually works with leaders across the city and state to bring awareness to our city and our campus. Colleen continues to be nationally recognized for her passionate work for our students from ACHA, NASPA & leads WVU as a founding member of Building Healthy Academic Communities with peer institutions. She has built a wellness team who bring outcomes based student wellness education to our campus, guiding graduate assistants and interns through their learning objectives. But the greatest quality she brings to campus is represented yearly by students who return to campus, seeking out her knowledge.

MAY 11

Ardell Moree

For keeping calm amid chaos and always finding time to mentor and support the Research IT team, Ardell Moree has won the latest Role Model RockIT Award. Ardell is patient and encourages excellence. He knows how to constructively criticize and to make his staff stronger, and how to praise good performance. Ardell is always willing to roll up his sleeves and help, leading by example with a hands-on approach. He sets goals that are attainable and plans accordingly, helping his team and other teams in ITS to meet and usually exceed them. When Research IT staff joined ITS, Ardell helped the team adjust with open lines of communication and an open-door policy, and his team knows it can trust his advice and judgment. Even with a new addition to the family and sleep deprivation, Ardell maintains an inspiring 'will-do' attitude. His leadership style and initiative are second to none.

Jason Santee

For developing new processes that improved communication and made the ITS Database Administration group more efficient with its time, Jason Santee has won the latest RockIT Award for Innovation. While working as interim assistant director last year, Jason devised several different ways to streamline processes that freed up DBA time for other tasks. He also made behind-the-scenes changes in how users log in to MAP (Mountaineer Administrative Processes), minimizing the down time for users. Before the launch of the new TeamDynamix system at, Jason also came up with a temporary solution to a problem with work requests coming in from multiple systems, or in personal emails. Without Jason, the DBA group would not be as efficient as it is, and our database and middleware applications would not appear to function as seamlessly as they do to students, faculty and staff.


Reshel Murray

Reshel has coordinated the WVU Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Reunion for two years. The NICU cares for the smallest and sickest babies. Families often spend weeks at their baby’s bedside. Our NICU staff works to help babies recover and to support families during long hospital stays. Through this challenging set of circumstances, each patient’s “NICU family” is created. The NICU Reunion lets families reconnect with their medical team and celebrate the growth, challenges, and progress of “NICU graduates” over the past several years. Reshel is a key player in fundraising efforts, communicates with families about the reunion, and approaches every task with a clear perspective that her efforts can help make a family's experience with having a sick child a little easier. She regularly works behind the scenes as a clinical scheduler. Her dedication to WVU Pediatrics reminds us what an honor we have to care for WV children. (Autumn Kiefer – Pediatrics)

Bradley Fansler

Bradley "Parker" Fansler has been a positive force since joining us here at Facilities Management Roads and Grounds. His dedication and hard work is noticed all over campus, and even by us here in the repair shop. Parker is not afraid to ask questions or pitch in and help anywhere we need it. His knowledge of equipment and strategy for snow removal and landscaping helps us tremendously, but all of that is eclipsed by his great attitude he brings to work everyday. From all of us here in the shop, and at Road and Grounds, thanks for the great care you take of our equipment Parker. (Phil Starsick - Facilities Management Roads and Grounds Shop)

Serena Silvaggio

Serena Silvaggio has coordinated the WVU Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Reunion for two years. The NICU cares for the smallest and sickest babies. Families often spend weeks at their baby’s bedside. Our NICU staff works extremely hard to help babies recover and to support families during long hospital stays. Through this challenging set of circumstances, each patient’s “NICU family” is created. The NICU Reunion allows families to reconnect with their medical team and to celebrate the growth, challenges, and progress of “NICU graduates” over the past several years. Serena is a key player in fundraising efforts, helps coordinate volunteers, and approaches every task with enthusiasm and selflessness. She works behind the scenes as a departmental manager in Pediatrics, meeting the families for the first time at the reunion. Yet, that doesn't stop Serena from working year-round to understand their journey a nd create an event that makes WVU Pediatrics proud. (Autumn Kiefer – Pediatrics)

Steve Stavar

Steve "Chewie" Stavar is a valuable member of the University Relations staff. Chewie's 'can do' attitude is reflected through his work. In recent months, he has taken on more responsibility to shoot and prepare videos that were used for the USA Science Fair in Washington, DC as well as help prepare the display booth and digital signage. Steve's main work is focused on the digital signage commonly known as the InfoStations across campus. On another note, Chewie has been very helpful in a recent move of some of the University Relations staff to new offices. UR really appreciates his dedication to get the work completed on some very tight deadlines.


Laurel Cook

Laurel Cook embodies the drive, passion and cheerfulness all Mountaineers should have. It's a given that she is a huge asset to the College of Business and Economics with her long list of honors and awards related to her research, but it goes deeper than that. Whether it's going above and beyond for her students, welcoming prospective business students to WVU's campus, or simply making a coworker's day better with her positive attitude, she is a perfect example of a Mountaineer who is Climbing Higher.

Scott Davis

Dr. Scott Davis has unwavering pride in the University, School of Medicine and the Division of Physical Therapy. As a very busy professor and director of professional education, he spends many extra hours running our social media presence and making sure that the external 'face' of the program is extremely high quality. Dr. Davis’ efforts have been instrumental in recruiting top talented students to become physical therapists of which WVU can be extremely proud. He is always on the lookout for good things to share with the world. Dr. Davis exemplifies what it means to be a professional and loyal Mountaineer.

Emily Patton

The tutor coordinator, a key member of our staff at Student-Athlete Development, unexpectedly passed away at the start of the semester. Emily jumped in to take on all of his responsibilities so that the university's student-athletes did not experience any gaps in their academic support. She has served as tutor coordinator for the entire term while keeping up with all of her own day-to-day responsibilities. Emily did not just take on the tutor coordinator duties. She has expanded our tutor program. She started a tutor of the month recognition and she runs a tutor education twitter account, so that there is ongoing weekly education for our tutors. Without Emily stepping forward, the student-athlete experience would be diminished and our office would not be as effective.

Barry Stephens

Barry Stephens works in the Division of Resource Management and his primary role is to serve as an undergraduate academic advisor. While Barry does this most effectively, he consistently and enthusiastically goes out of his way to step up and assist others (faculty, undergraduate students, graduate students, etc.) with any academic issue or problem that arises, from advising assistance, to navigating course/catalog/graduation requirements, on-line course assistance, and one-on-one math tutoring. In this regard, he is also our resident problem-solver, fulfilling a critical role that goes beyond his job description. Barry assists with student recruitment, which often means having to work on a Saturday or an evening - an assignment he does not hesitate to take on. He is dependable, helpful, cheerful, and a delightful addition to our support staff. Barry’s impact goes beyond advising and mentoring our students. (Gerard D’Souza – Division of Resource Management)

Deborah Wanzer

Deb Wanzer has been a social worker in Greenbrier County for more than 30 years. She now works at the Center for Excellence in Disabilities Traumatic Brain Injury Program. Deb is a powerful advocate for the consumers she works with and has been advocating for persons with disabilities for much of that time. She always puts the consumers needs first and identifies resources to help with in met needs. (Terry Cunningham - Center for Excellence in Disabilities Traumatic Brain Injury Program)


Kelsey Crawford

Kelsey is a young man from Corry, Pennsylvania, who has made a difference in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. He is a recent graduate of the program and when a position opened for a mechanical technician, he was hired. As a former student and student worker, Kelsey is able to apply what he’s learned to his new role. He has been an asset to faculty and staff. He has updated a number of procedures to help with student projects and to provide faculty with a needed quick "turn around.”

Mariana Matthews

Mariana continually goes above and beyond her responsibilities as the University’s Title IX Education Prevention Specialist. For example, last week was the White House's National It's On Us Week, and Mariana organized multiple events for each day to raise awareness of the campaign and WVU’s corresponding efforts. She also attended every event even though her WVU Peer Advocates hosted the majority of them. Her efforts have been recognized by the White House, and she has been extended an invitation to meet Vice President Joe Biden at a "Champions of Change" event. Our University is becoming a friendlier place for students who have become victim of sexual and domestic violence because of her dedicated efforts.

Joanne Pollitt

Joanne is an outstanding coworker. She goes above and beyond to put others ahead of herself. Joanne always takes the initiative to ensure that everything is done on time and done to the best of her ability. Joanne's passion for helping people is unforgettable. She always goes the extra mile for students, faculty, alumni, donors and friends of the College. Joanne is invested passionately and professionally within the College of Physical Activity & Sport Science and I know I speak for many when I say that she is the heart of the College.

Bradley Wilson

During his six years on WVU’s campus, Bradley Wilson has had a great impact on the economy and health of the University and West Virginia as a result of the research conducted through his Food Justice Lab. In collaboration with nearly a dozen organizations and funding agencies, the work includes: the student-run FIRSTHAND Cooperative which sells coffee with 100% of profits funding cooperative development projects in Nicaragua through its partner organization Working World, all while providing a unique experiential learning opportunity for students; and WV FOODLINK, a program to address concerns regarding access to safe, nutritious, culturally appropriate and sustainable food sources for West Virginia residents through partnerships between administrators and citizens. This work improved and will continue to improve WVU students educational and networking opportunities, state citizens’ quality of life through better access to food sources, WV K-12 understanding of food supply and food justice issues, and economic opportunity for the food industry in West Virginia.


Kandee Brandt

Kande Brandt works in mechanical and aerospace engineering. She goes above and beyond her duties for the department. She is well liked by students, faculty and coworkers. Any time I ask for help from her she is more than willing to help me. 

Susan Delaney

If you get paid through WVU or if you have ever had a problem with your check it is very likely that Susan Delaney in Payroll has helped you. She is a very knowledgeable and such a kind person. She goes above and beyond to resolve issues and always with a smile. It is a thankless job to take care of so many employees, but she is a rock star in her field. Thank you for all you do. (Angie Johnson – Payroll)

Karen Dice

Karen Dice is a very knowledgeable and a very kind person. Karen works very hard to keep the University’s payroll systems running smoothly, testing and working out the bugs. She can answer nearly any question you have about payroll and will go above and beyond to solve your problem and always gives you a workable solution...all with a smile. Thank you for all your tireless work. (Angie Johnson – Payroll)

Dianne Stewart

Dianne Stewart is one of the best bosses I've ever had. She is understanding, patient, and has so much enthusiasm for WVU. In her position in the Office of Admissions, Dianne speaks with hundreds of prospective students and families every week and makes each of them feel as if they are her top priority. She comes into the office early and leaves late every day. I could not think of a more dedicated person or anyone who could do her job better. You can see her light up when we have Open House events- she loves speaking with families and sharing her love of WVU with them. She is also extremely knowledgeable and willing to help everyone she comes into contact with. She truly makes WVU a better place to be. All of your hard work is greatly appreciated. (Jasmine Gonlin – Office of Admissions)


Tony Gibson

Tony Gibson, defensive coordinator for WVU football, has been involved in giving back to the community by organizing student-athletes to go visit patients at WVU Medicine Children’s.  Although these visits involve seeing children and families in difficult circumstances, Tony understands how much joy it brings the young children to see the athletes and spend quality time with them.


Forrest Conroy

I would like to recommend Forrest Conroy for the Climb Higher Award. Forrest is a very talented creative member of our University Relations team. He works well with designers and serves as a leader and mentor to his peers. He comes up with creative, innovative ideas that always push the boundaries and take us to a new level of creativity. He has taken on the lead creative roll with the WVU Magazine and recruiting materials. This is no simple task. His designs are not only creative, but thought provoking and really help convey meaning through visual storying telling and communications. And all of this is done with a great commitment to WVU. His personality is one that makes him a joy to work with, a self starter, and one that pushes himself to go above and beyond. Thank you Forrest. We commend you for all of your hard work and talent. (Angela Caudill, University Relations-Design)


Jane Dailey

Jane "Mama Jane" Dailey is one of the people our School of Nursing students see on their first day in skills lab. She is always smiling and willing to help when they have questions, are lost in the STEPS center, need to practice, or just need a hug before a big test. She always goes above and beyond for the students. She works closely with faculty and the STEPS staff to make sure the students get the best experiences. She has been such a great source of support I wanted to nominate her for this recognition.

Kathy DeWeese

There are many written words generated at a university, but Kathy DeWeese is one of the chief wordsmiths at WVU. Kathy's official title is Director of University Content for University Relations. In Kathy's 16+ years at the University, she has developed beautiful phrases and catchy titles while being the professional architect of writing on brochures, websites, letters, and reports. Her vast knowledge of the University aligned with her writing talent is an asset to the University. She is often juggling multiple assignments including editing a campus map, constructing content for a recruitment brochure and updating changes to a database but she seems unfazed. Kathy's sense of humor and positive attitude bring a freshness to any project. Above all, her overall kindness, empathy and respect for the students, staff and faculty at WVU are reflected in her writing. Kathy climbs higher each day in her work at WVU.

Brian Hoover

Brian Hoover goes above and beyond for students and his fellow staff members at Mountaineer Hub. He has been an incredible asset to have on our Campus and everyone is so grateful for his assistance. Brian exhibits excellent customer service at all times and I am truly fortunate to call him a coworker.


Amy Newton

Amy Newton is the director of Public Relations and Alumni Affairs at the WVU School of Pharmacy. She was recently recognized as Outstanding Chapter Advisor of the Year for Phi Lambda Sigma during the American Pharmacists Association Annual Meeting and Exposition, in Baltimore, Maryland. Phi Lambda Sigma, also known as the National Pharmacy Leadership Society, promotes the development of leadership qualities, particularly among student pharmacists. Amy was nominated for this esteemed award by her students and colleagues for her unceasing dedication, professional activities in support of the profession, and community service involvement as WVU School of Pharmacy’s PLS chapter advisor. Amy was also recognized for her accomplishment during the School of Pharmacy’s annual alumni reception, also held during APhA’s Annual Meeting. Congratulations, Amy!


Bruce Brubaker

As the adviser to the WVU Figure Skating Club and three other club sports, I can attest to Bruce's Brubaker’s exceptional work ethic, his untiring devotion to WVU students, and his inspiring community spirit. Bruce does it all with great humor and a great heart. Thank you, Bruce! (Mark Brazaitis – Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, English Department)

Bruce Brubaker manages club and intramural sports at the Student Recreation Center. He knows all his current and former students by name and knows what they're studying etc. Students adore Bruce, who manages the second largest club sports program in the country by himself, in addition to a fantastic Intramural Sport program with approximately 3,000 participants. Every morning, Bruce has a cheerful greeting. He always takes care to follow up about things you previously shared with him and genuinely cares about his colleagues. He's consistently upbeat and has contagious enthusiasm for the programs he manages. We are fortunate to have Bruce at the SRC. On days that he is out of the office for meetings etc., his presence is noticeably absent. Next time you're at the SRC, introduce yourself — Bruce will always remember your name.

march 2

Carrie Staton

Carrie Staton works in the Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center which is housed in the West Virginia Water Research Institute at West Virginia University. Carrie is a driving force behind the revitalization of brownfields in West Virginia. Through the West Virginia Redevelopment Collaborative, a program Carrie developed, she works tirelessly helping communities capture the maximum economic, environmental and social benefit from the remediation and reuse of brownfields. She has presented several times at regional, national, and international conferences on her collaborative model for redevelopment and stakeholder engagement. Carrie has played a key role in being awarded more than $1 million in redevelopment grants to WVU and West Virginia communities. She was also among 55 leaders from across the state to accept invitations to the 2016 Class of Leadership West Virginia. Her work ethic and dedication to the betterment of West Virginia are in keeping with the highest traditions of West Virginia University.


Kathy Friend
Kathy Friend was one of the first people to join University Relations-Digital in 2001 after many years of working at WVU. Kathy is very organized. She processes many sites including the creation of Student Organizations websites, helps manage content for policies in Administration and Finance and provides the training for the content management system. Kathy wears many hats including serving as the lead for project management for UR-Digital. She is very often the last person to leave the office. She is dedicated, oriented to high customer service and is a problem solver. She basically helps manage the Digital unit in various capacities such as ordering the supplies and supervising the students. Kathy is very conscientious, supportive to others in University Relations, and pays very close attention to detail. Kathy Friend is such a valuable and a significant contributor to the University Relations staff and someone who helps the University climb higher.

Tara Robbins

Tara Robbins in the Eberly College of Arts and Scienced goes beyond her duties every day to help not only the Office of the Dean, but everyone she comes into contact with. She maintains a positive attitude and always maintains a smile on her face no matter the situation Tara makes WVU a wonderful place to work. I would like to recognize her as a Mountaineer who is helping WVU by going that extra mile to provide excellent customer service to not only our department, but to the University as a whole. (Chasity Mayhew – Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, Office of the Dean)


Aaron Henry

Aaron Henry started out with WVU in 1997 as the business manager of the WVU Rural Family Medicine Residency Program in Harpers Ferry, WV - a small teaching clinic with WVU's first three full-time School of Medicine-Eastern Division faculty seeing about 10,000 patient visits a year. Over the next 18 years he earned his MBA and dedicated his efforts to the growth and expansion of WVU Medicine in the eastern panhandle. He is now the COO/CFO of University Healthcare Physicians, managing nearly 100 WVU clinicians in 15 specialties, serving two hospitals and operating 19 clinics across Jefferson and Berkeley counties where nearly 160,000 patient visits were performed 2015. Aaron Henry is a true Mountaineer who exemplifies the passion and commitment of WVU to "climb higher" and improve the health of West Virginians.

Lori Sherlock

Dr. Lori Sherlock is, what I call, our "wonder woman" of exercise physiology. This faculty member recently received her doctorate degree while working diligently in her faculty role in the EXPH program among many other things. In that role as EXPH faculty member, she is the internship coordinator, aquatic therapy certification coordinator, EXPH club sponsor, academic advisor, and instructor. While these things all combine to give her quite a full plate, she also manages to represent the state of WV and WVU as an Ironman Triathlon competitor, qualifying twice for the world championships. She has recently been selected to the national Snapple Triathlon Pro Team, a cohort of seven professional and/or nationally ranked triathletes who race among the fastest in the sport and are heavily involved in their local "tri" communities. (Toni Burbridge – School of Medicine, Professional and Undergraduate Programs)

February 10

Chelle Adams

Under Chelle Adams’ leadership in Human Resources, the WVU Mountaineer Leadership Academy won first place at the LEAD16 conference as the Best Leadership Program For Employees – North America.

Rachael Conrad

Rachael Conrad in Career Services is dedicated to increasing participation of Davis College students in Career Service events. She worked with natural resource faculty to increase student preparation in a recent mock interview event. Rachael is also a core organizer of the new upcoming energy land management networking and recruitment event in March. Her cheerful attitude encourages others to strive to improve our students’ opportunities and future successes.

Roger Jefferys

Roger Jefferys in Facilities Management is a quiet, unassuming person. In all the years I have known him, I have never seen him angry or upset. He comes in and does his job each and every day. Ask him to do a task and you can be assured it will be done correctly and on time. His customer service is far above the rest. Roger is a true asset to Facilities Management and WVU. I consider him one of our very best trades specialists.

February 3

Sherry Everett

As winter storm Jonas kept so many full-time University employees from traveling to work, there was one Facilities Management employee who inspired us here at the Evansdale Residential Complex. That person is Sherry Everett. When the forecast showed that the weather might keep people from coming in to work Saturday, it did not stop Sherry. She arrived on Friday, stayed throughout Saturday and continued through Sunday. Please understand, there are approximately 1,500 students residing in these four adjoining buildings. There were more than 100 student employees working here. We have 37 residential floors, two vast community floors, more than 80 bathrooms and large common areas. Sherry was here to provide facilities support for everyone and all of that massive area. On Saturday, no one else could make it to work to even share in the workload. She did it all herself without asking for anything. Now THAT is climbing higher!

Whitney Godwin

If you want a poster child for #GoFirst, Whitney is your woman. As a recruiter for the College of Media, she is the frontline for introducing prospective students and families to our College as well as the University. One of the things that makes Whitney so effective is how much she cares about the students and the University. She develops meaningful relationships with the students that last through their time at WVU, and they look to her as a mentor as the progress through their college experience. Whitney is also incredibly smart and innovative. She is not afraid to use new media to connect to students, using Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat to communicate with students where they are – social media. She is a joy to work with and I count the University (and myself) lucky to have her. – Tricia Petty, WVU Reed College of Media

January 27

Brenda Deane

Brenda Deane is always pleasant to work. She has a great attitude about work which makes the work environment much more positive. I depend on her for access to the work-study students that the School of Nursing has available for faculty and staff. Coordinating the use of the work-study students can be complicated and she is very helpful in getting my work completed accurately and on time. My work location is remote from the School of Nursing and Brenda is very conscientious about the work getting done without my input. If she has any questions she is prompt in calling me to make sure the work is done properly. My job would be much more difficult without her help.

Judi McCracken

Judi McCracken has worked at the Downtown Campus Library for years in the Access Services department, working tirelessly to assist students, faculty, staff, and her fellow coworkers in a variety of ways that often go unnoticed. She is instrumental in the Interlibrary Loan Department that retrieves many materials for patrons from other libraries often going the extra mile to locate materials. Judi often takes on extra duties to help coworkers. Judi also works the Access Services desk with enthusiasm and exuberance that lifts the spirits of those around her. Recently Judi has been working on Staff Council. The WVU Libraries and University as a whole would not be the same without her. – Michelle Percich, University Libraries, Downtown Campus Library, Access Services

Beth Pellegrino

Dr. Beth Pelligrino has been a Mountaineer forever. She completed undergraduate, medicine internship and nephrology fellowship at West Virginia University. She has been a full-time faculty member in the School of Medicine since 2004. Dr. Pelligrino travels hundreds of miles every week to see chronic kidney disease patients in Moorefield, Keyser, Buckhannon and Webster Springs, as well as in Morgantown. She also sees dialysis patients in Moorefield, Keyser and Westover. Her heart is in delivering specialized healthcare to the people in West Virginia through her hard work, teaching and research.

January 20

Eleonore Jones

There are staff who quietly work behind the scenes to make various aspects of the University work. Eleonore (Randolph) Jones is one of those people. Eleonore is a programmer for University Relations-Digital. Some of her tasks are to keep the ENEWS subscriptions up-to-date, keep the Emergency Alert database current, train and troubleshoot for Wufoo users, keep the Visitors Center functioning as well as do programming projects. She also serves in the capacity as being a tester for many projects that UR-Digital attempts. Eleonore is one who always pitches in. She is so kind to people and always follows through to make sure the problem is fixed. She also has served as the wellness coordinator for University Relations for several years. Eleonore is a very good example of the hardworking Mountaineer determination.

Jenna Winfrey

Jenna Winfrey does a phenomenal job coordinating prospective students’ schedules at the WVU Visitors Center. Communication coming out of the Center is organized and she represents the University so well to prospective students and families. Most of all, she does it with a sweet demeanor and “can do” attitude. She is committed to excellence and it is a pleasure to work with her. 

January 13

Charles Smith

Charles Smith in Campus Services is an all-around great guy who really cares about the students of WVU Tech. He is always willing to help co-workers – no matter the circumstances. There is no job too big, small, or too messy for Charles. Everything he does at work is for the students. – George Wheeler, Campus Services, WVU Tech

Lisa Thomas

Lisa Thomas in Athletics answered the phone when I called the Mountaineer Ticket office in sheer panic. I just ordered basketball tickets but once I place the order, I realized my address was incorrect. She was so happy and pleasant and with the click of a keystroke fixed my address – problem solved. Customer service is a critical need when answering the phone and Lisa hit the 3-point shot in my book. She had no idea I was a fellow employee. Lisa did her job but went a step beyond – you could hear the smile on her face. Thank you! – Nancy Bremar, WVU Extension Service/Families and Health

January 6

Anne Lofaso

Anne Lofaso contributes regularly and selflessly to all three areas of our land grant mission at the College of Law. However I would like to recognize her for her Big 12 faculty fellowship trip this fall. Dr. Lofaso visited all Big 12 law schools in a two week whirlwind driving tour. She gave talks, met with students, and in general promoted the wonderful programs here at West Virginia University to our colleagues – some of whom only know us from our athletics teams. We appreciate all of our faculty who engage in these fellowships and thank Dr. Lofaso for all the miles she trekked for us this semester. – Melanie Page, Vice President for Research

Kim Mocniak

Kim Mocniak is the Administrative Secretary Senior for the College of Education and Human Services, serving the Office of the Dean and Development. Kim is exceptional at her job as a front office staff member. Her positive attitude makes working with her easy and enjoyable. Kim’s passion for helping people makes her approachable and she always goes the extra mile for students, faculty, alumni, donors and friends of the college. Kim is deeply invested in the success of the college and we are fortunate to have her passionately and professionally serving the college each day. 

December 23

Amy Chipps

I inadvertently placed an unsealed, unaddressed card in the mail at the Mountainlair post office. I did not realize what I had done until after I got home. I returned to the post office the next morning to see if the card had been placed in lost and found. Luckily, the same person was working and she recognized me. She had discovered my unsealed card, noted my return address from the other cards that I had mailed and held it most of the day. But when I didn’t return, she placed it in an envelope and mailed it to my home, with tracking. Amy Chipps was thoughtful, conscientious, caring, and definitely went the extra mile. Thank you so much. – Sherry Condon, Evansdale Library

Clayton Kuklick

Clayton Kuklick has brought energy, dynamism and enthusiasm to his interactions with colleagues and students in Coaching and Teaching Studies. He is an innovative faculty member, who truly cares about the education of his students. Clayton also makes his classes challenging, but at the same time, fun through his engaging teaching style. Although employed as a teaching professor, he has assisted on multiple research projects with colleagues and is always willing to go the extra mile to ensure his colleagues (both faculty and staff) and students reach their goals. He truly is the epitome of “climb higher”.  – Stephen Harvey, Coaching and Teaching Studies

MaryBeth Mandich

Dr. MaryBeth Mandich has been a driving force for excellence for more than 25 years. She has been instrumental in not only leading the Professional Programs/Physical Therapy program to a nationally respected level, but she also has developed several other programs. In addition to her administrative contributions, she maintains a busy teaching schedule and clinical practice. Dr. Mandich is known throughout the University as someone who builds bridges and fosters collaborations. Dr. Mandich has a unique way of keeping everyone focused on humanistic and institutional values and the University’s mission. She is the embodiment of the student-first concept. Dr. Mandich does all of this in a quiet and unassuming manner and always places the needs of WVU ahead of her own personal ambitions. Dr. Mandich “Climbs Higher” and this institution is a much better place because of her. –Scott Davis, Physical Therapy

Donna Sands

Donna Sands at the Evansdale Library answered a phone call from a woman from Wheeling, West Virginia, who was unfamiliar with the WVU campus. She was trying to find the Evansdale Library to attend a meeting. Donna stayed on the phone with the woman for 20 minutes, providing directions to the Library, including directing her to a short-term parking lot. Donna watched for the woman to enter the building, and then escorted her to the room where the meeting was scheduled. Donna was patient and attentive and is a perfect example of going above and beyond.

Arvind Thiruvengadam

Arvind and his colleagues (Dan Carder, Marc Besch, Hemanth Kappana and Greg Thompson) single-handedly have done more to protect the environment and the health and well-being of public than any other federal, state and/or private agency has done in the arena of emissions from mobile sources (trucks, cars, etc.). As the #2 person on the Motor Trend magazine’s top 50 power players in the world, Arvind and his colleagues never had, and never will have, any intentions of pointing fingers at Volkswagen. The industry recognized their contribution by listing Arvind higher than almost every major CEO, engineer, scientist and entrepreneur in the automotive world. Arvind has significantly advanced the basic and fundamental research in internal combustion engines, and he has had a major world-wide impact in the applied research and development arena – all for the public good in the highest traditions of a 21st century American land-grant institution of higher education.

December 9

Ashman Dodd

Having been exposed to many different IT professionals in my life, I can say that Ashman Dodd is by far the most outstanding IT specialist I have ever encountered. I heard rumors about his excellence before I was hired but little did I know exactly how wonderful he really was. All of Chestnut Ridge Center agrees on this: Ashman exemplifies a “Climb Higher Mountaineer.” Regardless of the challenge, he brings a can-do attitude to the job, makes you the highest priority, unprompted offers assistance, and even goes out of his way to go the extra mile and anticipate the users needs. His work is always done swiftly and there never seems to be a need to follow up because he has already been taken care of the task. Despite his excellence, he always remains humble, friendly, courteous, and professional at all times. He really is a inspiration to us all. – Liv Miller, Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry

Michael Kalasin

It is an honor to nominate Michael Kalasin, Facilities Services, Campus Service Worker, for recognition of the “Climbing Higher” award. Michael responded quickly when he found a sizable amount of money in Knapp Hall early the morning of December 2. He did not hesitate to place the money in an envelope and lock it in my office. He reported this to a co-worker that morning explaining that he found the money, as well as his concern it should be returned to the person who lost the money. As the Knapp Hall building supervisor, I do not recall having cash given to me to help find who it belongs to. This honesty does not surprise me. Michael accepted responsibility to do the right thing. The money was not his. He wanted to be sure it would be returned to the owner. He is very deserving of this recognition. – Paul Martinelli, WVU Extension Service

Tara McMillan

Tara McMillan in the Libraries Business Office always manages to juggle numerous responsibilities and stop in the middle of them to do a quick favor or correct someone’s error, without allowing one feather to be ruffled. Any time I have asked for help, Tara readily – and patiently – gives guidance on time sheets, sick leave, and any other Library business. Other Library employees agree that working with Tara through the years has been a blessing because of her “climb higher” attitude. – Judi McCracken, University Libraries/Downtown Access Services

Kerry Odell

Kerry Odell had been with the University for many years and has risen to challenge after challenge to make our institution better. He has served as associate dean in the Davis College, for nearly a decade as campus provost and CEO at Potomac State, as principal liaison between Morgantown and campuses in Keyser and Montgomery, and most recently as interim director for two Davis college academic divisions and as the inaugural director of the college’s new School of Design and Community Development. Through all this, he’s been a teacher and an education leader and even now preparing to teach in his home discipline of Agricultural Education and Extension as well as in design and human and community development. Kerry has and is truly helping us all to climb higher.

David Parker

David Parker, Department of Epidemiology in the Health Sciences Center, has applied for and received several housing urban development grants to provide shelter for the homeless particularly in southern West Virginia. He has been consistently involved in providing services for our most vulnerable citizens of West Virginia. David does this without recognition and I think this opportunity is ideal to recognize his service. 

December 2

Ken Currie

Ken Currie goes above and beyond his duties as department chair of Industrial and Management Systems Engineering. He not only takes a personal interest in serving his faculty/staff and his students, but his support also extends beyond what can normally be expected of a leader, professionally and privately. He truly embodies the ‘going first’ Mountaineer spirit.

Gypsy Denzine

Dean Gypsy Denzine is the model for community and interdisciplinary collaboration. Over the past six plus months, she has been working with the West Virginia Department of Education and the WVU Reed College of Media to coordinate the Academic Spotlight community review of K-12 education standards. Results were presented to the WV Board of Education. Findings from this community evaluation led to a repeal and revisions that improve teacher flexibility for educators across the state. Dr. Martirano, superintendent of schools, and members of the Board of Education called this collaboration a model and heralded it as a herculean effort that resulted in the most important work done for educators of the state this year. Dr. Denzine took on this challenge with her always positive attitude early in the summer, only a short while after taking the helm at the College of Education and Human Services. She should be recognized, lauded and applauded for her role in this effort. – Geah Pressgrove, WVU Reed College of Media

Michael Hyde

Michael Hyde of Card Services has been incredibly helpful since we got electronic doors at our building. Keeping our building secure is a top priority and Michael has been a terrific resource. His knowledge of the system is amazing as he can answer all questions quickly. He’s able to help others understand what some may consider a complicated system. No matter how many times I’ve called him for help, he has been incredibly kind, patient, helpful, and informative. I don’t know how he does it, but I’m glad he does.

Aaron Jeffries

Aaron Jeffries helps everyone who needs it and makes the work environment at the Erickson Alumni Center a better and happier. He has passion for his job as a production manager and enjoys doing extra projects around the Alumni Center such as the gingerbread house. Aaron is a true Mountaineer at work and at heart. (Patty and Ruth – Erickson Alumni Center) Connie Jenkins Connie Jenkins goes above and beyond her assigned duties in Facilities Management. She is always busy and never stops working. Connie works for the West Virginia and Regional History Center at the Downtown Campus Library, but is always quick to help in any area of the Libraries. She often does this without being asked. Connie is friendly to everyone she sees and always has a smile on her face. She is truly a friendly, nice, hardworking person. She deserves to be recognized for her great work and awesome attitude. – Beth Bucklew, Libraries Business Office

November 18

Andrew Brady

Andrew Brady has gone above and beyond to give students and staff the best quality food he can through Dining Services. He comes in early and stays late. He will stop at nothing to give the students the best experience. Andrew’s creative dishes, along with the new dining hall, have given the students a reason to eat at Cafe Evansdale. He works well with his staff and fellow chefs to create a wonderful work environment. I can safely say that without him Cafe Evansdale would not be what it is today. – George Merrill, Dining Services

Susan Delaney

I would like to recognize Susan Delaney for her dedication to the Payroll office. She goes above and beyond to help others. Susan is a team worker, always very nice and has a smile on her face. She is truly a great coworker.

Rochelle Everett

Rochelle Everett is the go-to person for all students and visitors in the Mountainlair. She has worked at the Mountainlair Information Center for 21 years. Her customer service skills are amazing. Her calm approach has helped hundreds of anxious students and parents during New Student Orientation. She answers questions and gives directions with her ever-present smile. She even helps student with bus schedules and locating classrooms. She clearly goes above and beyond with her knowledge and compassion. Staff look to Rochelle for guidance. She exemplifies the true Mountaineer Spirit. – MaryAlice Dunn, Office of Student Employment

Marie Jackson

Just ask students, “Who was the most helpful and most knowledgeable person that helped you process for payroll?” They would easily and quickly answer “Marie Jackson.” For example, she steers international students in the right direction when they’re faced with a challenge. She is knowledgeable, helpful and a great asset to her department. The students are always so grateful for her assistance and thank her accordingly. Thank you Marie for doing such a great job! – Angie Johnson, Finance/Payroll/EPS

Tamara Stalnaker

Tami, a member of the Student Life Information Technology unit under the direction of Steven Watkins, collaborated with the staff in SABO, Revenue Services, ITS, Dining & Housing Services at all of WVU’s campuses to streamline and increase transparency to the meal plan purchasing process. This system has greatly enhanced the meal plan purchasing experience through the programming and implementation of a meal plan accounting system for Dining Services. Historically all meal plan changes and commuter meal plan purchases were accomplished using a manual paper process. With the implementation of the meal plan accounting system students can go to MYMountaineer Card website, select the meal plan they wish to purchase and view their meal plan usage accounts. In addition, upon selection or change of a meal plan the student is informed immediately about the additional charge or refund that will be posted to their student account by the next morning.

November 11

Danielle Eppinger

In addition to Danielle’s duties in the Athletics compliance office she has volunteered her time for a third year to coordinate the annual holiday party for the Athletics department. For a number of years, the department never held a party. When the administration recognized a few years ago that it was important to bring everyone together Danielle offered to take the lead to facilitate everything. She has since created an event that brings much joy to all in attendance and has increased the morale of our department. The attendance has soared to hundreds and it has become an event that our staff and their families look forward to each year. Danielle continues to be a rising star in our department and I hope that she is recognized for going above and beyond what’s expected of her.

Kim Foley

Kim is a leader and team builder in Finance. She is kind and understanding, and teaches you how and why things work they way they do in our daily jobs. Kim seems able to solve any problem we have. She always greets you with a smile. Kim is an asset as the department’s assistant director. I am proud to be part of her team! Thanks Kim!

Annette Freshour

Nettie has an outstanding skill set of building relationships, educating and genuinely engaging in the lives of student-athletes. Nettie works in the Athletics Department’s sport nutritionist/dietitian office. Coincidentally, several years ago, Nettie embraced the ‘Climb Higher’ mantra and branded her nutritional and educational counseling approach as ‘Climb Higher. She seeks out best practices nationwide in order to grow as a professional. She is also devoted outside of work hours as she has established ‘Bodies in Motion’, a support group that meets with female student-athletes who wish to address topics such as body image. ‘Climb Higher’ is what Nettie strives to do on a daily basis, but her efforts are appreciated by all. She also has a family and is a proud mother of two.

Larry Hawley

Larry Hawley is a Trades Specialist Lead II in the Facilities Management Zone 4 Maintenance group. He is a flexible, dependable and well-organized individual who takes pride in what he does. He is an excellent mechanic, mentor and team leader who is always looking for ways to help his shop improve the processes involved in Zone Maintenance. His leadership and planning along with the hard work of his coworkers have consistently reduced the unplanned maintenance workload at the Evansdale Residential Complex over the last two years by nearly 10%. It is a pleasure working with him as an integral part of the Zone 4 maintenance team.

Linda Strawser

Linda is a wonderful leader in Finance. I say a leader because she is not a boss, and not a manager. She leads by example. Linda encourages the staff to be more and to do more. She has done all of our jobs at some point in time. She can do anything from answer phones to keying and doesn’t put herself above any of us. Linda is stellar as our Director, and runs our department so smoothly and is well respected. If you have an issue, her door is always open and only kind words come from her lips. If you need guidance, she does that without criticizing or talking down to anyone. I am thankful to be a member of her team.

Sam Zizzi

Professor Sam Zizzi is on sabbatical at the College of Physical Activity Sport Sciences. What a great time to relax, right? Wrong! Instead, Sam – a native of Elkins, West Virginia – is on his own 55 county tour. He is visiting many of the 70 or so facilities that offer the PEIA Weight Management Program. As the Director of Research and Evaluation for that program, he is working to identify what works best so that thousands of PEIA members at these many facilities can realize their full potential in health and in life. He is giving back to West Virginia in spades. In addition, Sam has an international reputation in the field of sport psychology, and is consistently rated as one of the best teachers, advisors, and researchers in CPASS.

November 4

Patrick Kight

Patrick Kight and the employees in the Facilities Management plumbing shop continue to make excellent progress in their area to be more efficient. The shop is continually looking for ways to improve processes. They have increased their technical capabilities to make repairs to campus systems and minimize maintenance’s impact to their customers. The employees have completed numerous complex projects that have resulted in saving the University thousands of dollars. Patrick’s leadership and the shop’s teamwork are excellent examples of what it means to be a Mountaineer.

October 28

Twila Bee

The Office of Admissions would like to recognize Twila Bee. She is retiring on Oct. 31, 2015. But during her years with Admissions, Twila has done numerous things to make it a fun place to work. She kept up employee moral and made us laugh when we didn’t feel like it. Twila was a leader who pulled together numerous functions to make our office feel like a family. We will really miss her smiling face. Twila was a great asset to our office.

Rickie Huffman

Rickie Huffman is sunshine in human form. She has been an incredible addition to the Office of Admissions, bringing enthusiasm and cheer wherever she goes. She has been a crucial part of this fall’s Meet WVU events, where people from Admissions and various colleges and departments throughout the University travel throughout the state to meet prospective students in their communities. Rickie’s attention to detail helps all of us do a better job at these events, and she is a fantastic go-to person with any questions and concerns. Helpfulness and kindness are in her nature. Any prospective student or family that talks to Rickie will get a fantastic impression of the University community.

October 21

Kip Comack

For critical leadership on the WVU Hire project, Kip Comack in Information Technology Services won the latest ITS RockIT Award for Role Model. Kip assumed an inspirational leadership role, solving problems and developing creative strategies. He stepped up to identify tasks to be accomplished, then tracked and managed the activities. He helped other team members learn how they could best contribute. He kept meetings focused on high-priority items, held the team accountable and demonstrated how each person could contribute to effective collaboration. Kip has been extremely dedicated to this project, working 80 hours a week as we neared go-live. Without him, we would not have met the deadline. Kip is a role model for customer service. He is successful because of his curiosity and desire to learn and understand new tools and approaches. His determination to find solutions and his ability to do so are things that all of us should aspire to emulate.

Dawn Hernandez

For personal commitment to selfless community service, Dawn Hernandez in Information Technology Services won the latest ITS RockIT Award for Outreach. Her activities support WVU’s strategic goal of enhancing the well-being and quality of life for West Virginians. A Red Cross volunter, Dawn is a caseworker for those affected by natural disasters, finding shelter for displaced people. She works with clients to provide immediate assistance to help alleviate stress, and she works to get them the resources they need to recover. Dawn is also a member of the Disaster Action Team, supporting emergency workers and victims. Dawn serves as Cub Scouts Pack 44 treasurer and a member of the pack council. She’s also chairwoman of the local Works of Mercy committee, coordinating blanket drives, dinners for the homeless and more. Dawn also volunteers with the Coordinating Council on Homelessness, trying to get homeless or very low-income people into positive, affirming activities in the community.

Tracy Novak

Tracy Novak has been a stalwart in the National Research Center for Coal and Energy for quite a long time. She does whatever she needs to do to make each of the units and the NRCCE shine. She will pack bags for conferences, put mailings together for the units of the NRCCE, help direct traffic (both auto and pedestrian), man exhibits and take photos of the events. She is always willing to go that extra step that it takes to make each event and activity successful. And she does so with her ever present smile. She cheerfully provides the support and her knowledge of the NRCCE and its organizations help her make herself useful in any situation. For the people that organize events and activities, you feel better knowing that she is there to help you ensure that “Mountaineers Go First.”

Kelly Webber

On Thursday, Oct. 15, Kelly Webber in the College of Education and Human Services’ Department of Counseling, Rehabilitation Counseling and Counseling Psychology was approached in her office by an elderly local resident. The woman was confused, scared and said she thought she had a stroke. Kelly took the woman to the hospital and sat with her until a neighbor arrived. It is this commitment to climbing higher that exemplifies the Mountaineer spirit. Kelly clearly went above and beyond her duties by showing compassion and assistance to another person in need. Her actions reflect the values of our college and department, and we are grateful for Kelly’s contributions.

October 14

Catherine Rakowski

As the administrative associate for the West Virginia and Regional History Center, Catherine Rakowski goes above and beyond what is expected of her. She is always willing to help out, fill in, or do whatever else is needed to keep the Center running smoothly. Her knowledge of history benefits our patrons on a daily basis. Every year Catherine’s expertise is displayed in our West Virginia Day exhibit. She is a true asset to the History Center and the University.

October 7

Bob Brak, Amanda Biddle, Harlan Shreve and Ricky Jackson

I would like to recognize Bob Brak, Amanda Biddle, Harlan Shreve and Ricky Jackson for their attention to an emergency situation with an employee at WVU Potomac State. Thanks to their attentiveness and dedication someone received life-saving emergency medical attention that they desperately needed. I appreciate the quick responses and timely guidance that was provided in this unusual situation. – Amber Tennant, Human Resources

Viola Bryant

Viola Bryant in the Department of Physics and Astronomy consistently goes above and beyond her job requirements to provide outstanding service to faculty, staff and students of the University. She does so with enthusiasm, good humor and contagious cheerfulness. – Earl Scime, Physics and Astronomy

Judy Moore

Judy Moore puts the effort into making her employees at the National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium succeed. She keeps them informed about all that is going on. She works with them to show how what they do helps the department. She makes sure they have the training they need, while seeking ways to help her do her job better. Judy readily accepts and seeks tasks outside of her comfort zone. She makes sure that everything that goes outside of the NAFTC reflects highly upon the department and the University. Judy represents the department and the University at meetings, conferences and other gatherings of state and national leaders in the alternative fuel vehicle industry. Through her efforts, the NAFTC has received numerous marketing and communications awards. Judy makes everyone in the department a better employee through her work and example. 

September 30

Stephanie Pendley

As the office administrator for the assistant vice president of Human Resources, Stephanie Pendley has many duties and responsibilities. She willingly goes above and beyond in all facets of her job. She has an astounding ability to multi-task. And despite the pressures that can come with meeting deadlines, she continues to approach each project with a positive attitude. Stephanie’s enthusiasm is infectious and she inspires those that work with her and around her to contribute 100% toward their role the University workplace. She takes every opportunity to praise those who work around her on their individual and group achievements. It is truly a joy to work with Stephanie and we feel she embodies every desirable quality of the “Climb Higher” spirit. –Lisa Boyles, Division of Human Resources

Marsha Rohozen

Marsha Rohozen from the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources is what one expects a human resources employee. She is informative, direct and willing to train on any subject pertaining to her field. Marsha has made such a difference in the College with her unique leadership style. She always takes time to make sure that questions are answered and the job is completed properly and in a timely fashion. Marsha exemplifies the spirit of the “Climb Higher” recognition.

September 23

Emmitt Bolyard

Emmitt Bolyard came from the warehouse into maintenance a little more than a year ago. Since then, he’s made a huge difference in housing. Emmitt tackles all types of problems and has never failed. He is very quick to respond and never bulks at an assignment.

Jason Burns

In the past year I have been incredibly impressed by the diverse events offered by the Office of Multicultural Programs. Jason Burns strives to create different ways to bring a variety of multicultural activities, which address a broad range of topics and cultures. These activities and events give students a glimpse into other cultures and diversity to give them an appreciation and respect for others. It is valuable for the university to develop well-rounded students who are global citizens, and Jason is helping us do this. –Nicole Solomon, Financial Aid Office

Kathryn Lauffer

In the short time I have been here I have seen Kathryn shine as a stellar employee in the finance division of Payroll. She wears many hats and is so very helpful. She is the problem solver. She hasn’t been with the department long, but everyone knows that she is the one to see to get the ball rolling on something you need done. Be it something as small as business cards to dealing with all the ticket number requests, to getting something special like a pen you really like, just ask Kathryn. Her kind and caring demeanor make her so very approachable. Even if it isn’t her job, she will find an answer for you. –Angie Johnson, Payroll/Finance Division

September 16

Pamela Brookover

For several years Pam Brookover has approached her job in the Division of Design & Merchandising, now part of the School of Design and Community Development, with professionalism. She has the attitude that every person on the team has an important role to play and the entire team will do its’ best when everyone does their individual best at their given jobs. Pam’s dedication to her work allows me to be better at my job of teaching, developing research and performing the service. Whether it’s straightening out complicated grant reimbursements, assisting with course related matters or just keep me apprised of the every changing landscape of University policies and procedures, Pam is the best and deserves the recognition not only of her department, but the entire University!

Emmitt Davis

Emmitt Davis came from the warehouse into maintenance a little more than a year ago. Since then, he’s made a huge difference in housing. Emmitt tackles all types of problems and has never failed. He is very quick to respond and never bulks at an assignment.

September 9

Tara George-Jones

Tara George-Jones has been a lynchpin in terms of the daily management of faculty, students and the study abroad courses in the Office of International Programs. She provides after-hours safety orientations to students to facilitate the collaboration between student and faculty schedules. As the “safety officer” for the Office, when she says she is available in emergencies 24×7, she is really available those hours. In critical situations she maintains a high level of professional best practices despite the inconvenient hours and challenging situations that need to be addressed. On budgetary concerns, University travel policies, health insurance, and readying course applications for submission and academic review she is a wealth of information. She provides exceptional advising and support for outbound students thus assuring a quality experience. Tara’s breadth of knowledge concerning resources on campus is broad, which makes her invaluable to faculty in these situations. She is a great facilitator and resource manager.

Steven Spriggs

Steve Spriggs works at University Relations-Digital as a programmer. Steve is responsible for many web applications such as the Visitors Center’s registration app, the Expert’s Database, the President’s/Dean’s list app, WVUToday app, and the Campus Map. Steve has his hands on multiple projects but he seems to be able to juggle them well. He is innovative, organized, and is always seeking a way to make the process better for the web designers in the Colleges. He developed Hammer, which is an app that developers can use to test their code. Steve is a graduate of the College of Business and Economics with a major in management information systems.

Tracy Wheeler

Tracy Wheeler from the College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences is amazing. She is always eager to help with whatever work needs to be completed. It does not matter if she’s swamped with her own work, she will drop everything to help others. She always seems to have an answer to any questions that are asked, and if not, she uses her resources on campus to find an answer within minutes. Tracy is the kindest person to interact with, and truly will do whatever it takes to make CPASS and WVU better. I cannot imagine that there is a better, more motivated and harder worker than Tracy on the University campus. She is a big part of what makes CPASS and the University such a great place to work. – Jackson Watson, Sport Sciences

September 2

Sherry Kuhl

Sherry Kuhl, the director of the Ruth E. Kershner Office of Student Services, is the glue that keeps the School of Public Health together. Since the School is relatively new, there is a strong need for a connection between students and administration. Sherry is the perfect fit. Not only is she understanding and easy to talk to, but she is assertive and is always looking out for the students’ best interests. Without Sherry, students and faculty would be at a disadvantage.

Sandra Peppel

The pool is the jewel of the Student Rec Center. As the aquatics manager, Sandra Peppel leads the staff of lifeguards with panache, humor and care. She understands what the pool means to those on campus who see it as an oasis. Thanks for preserving paradise, Sandra! – Mark Brazaitis, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, English department

August 26

Dominique Bruno

Dominique Bruno, an advising graduate assistant in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, helps ensure that multidisciplinary studies students are on the right path to graduation. She has helped hundreds of students, and is knowledgeable, warm and gracious during her advising sessions. Dominique balances her advising with finishing work towards her dissertation and Ph.D. in english, as well as presenting at conferences. She is a model for diversifying her skills as a graduate student. Most of all, she is a terrific asset to the MDS program. – Renee Nicholas, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences

Anne Chillingworth-Shaffer

We began the semester with a surprise gift in our faculty mailboxes. The gift was a small brown bag that contained two fortune cookies and an attached note that read “We are so ‘fortune-ate’ to have you at the School of Social Work.” Our secret pal is no secret anymore since she was spotted putting the bags in the mailboxes. It is our own, Anne Chillingworth-Shaffer, who teaches several courses, and is so often favored by our social work students. What a wonderful way to demonstrate support and say “I appreciate you” to your colleagues. – Linda Ferrise, School of Social Work

August 19

Tammy Bishoff

Tammy Bishoff is known for her courteous and helpful manner in Academic Innovation. She goes to great lengths to assist a broad range of clientele – from faculty, staff and students. She always responds with a pleasing demeanor. Tammy’s breadth of knowledge is vast and deep which allows her to provide valuable service to many people. She has fulfilled many roles within Academic Innovation and has “pinch-hit” for units across campus because of her excellent work ethic and tremendous skill base. Her love of WVU and West Virginia shows through Tammy’s commitment to students. She is an excellent representative of our unit and WVU with all she comes into contact. Tammy is an epitome of what John F. Kennedy saw when he said that, “The sun does not always shine in West Virginia, but its people always do.” – Sue Day-Perroots – Academic Innovation/Undergraduate Education

Marlene Guzy

Marlene Guzy always goes above and beyond at the Center for Executive Education. She is the most kind and generous person I have worked with in a long time. Marlene is one of the first to volunteer to help her colleagues in the College of Business & Economics, regardless if it is something simple such as completing a form or helping with a large event such as graduation. More importantly, she also takes time to talk with our students and get to know them. She helps them when they have problems and guides them in the right direction to get the help and information they need. Marlene treats them all like they are her own children.

August 14

Bruce Brubaker

As the program manager for intramurals at the Student Rec Center, Bruce Brubaker is responsible for more than 40 club sports and more than 15 intramural leagues. He works closely with the students to ensure they have the proper funding and facilities to compete at their best. With the help of Bruce’s hard work and dedication, several students and teams have gone on to win national championships and multiple accolades throughout the years. He’s also helping to revolutionize the collegiate club/intramural industry by being on the forefront of online registration, scheduling and payments for students. The changes may also lead to the possibility of students earning credits for joining and participating in club/intramural sports.

College of Business and Economics Information Technology staff

The College of Business and Economics Information Technology staff should be recognized for their efficiency, timeliness, customer service and dedication to the needs of the College. They also hire some of the best student workers, who also handle work orders with kindness and professionalism. It is a true asset to have such a responsive team in the building to handle our IT issues.

Adam Johnson

Adam Johnson is a talented designer who has the unique mix of technical skills in addition to design skills. He also has been the champion for applying content strategy in planning a website. Adam is instrumental in advancing training offered by University Relations-Digital to other professional technologist designers in the Colleges and departments. Adam is an innovator in the development of design process with integration into the content management system. Adam has an upbeat, positive personality. He is a "big idea" guy who encourages our unit to reach higher. He has an openness to solving design problems. In addition to these strengths, Adam has been such a leader in his work on photo and video shoots through his outdoor skills of kayaking and mountain climbing. Samples of Adam’s web work include the holiday sites, Mountaineers Go First, the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Recycle and the Shale site.

Cate Schlobohm

Cate Schlobohm in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources has reached out and touched many middle and high school students with her Engineering Challenge Camp this summer. I have observed the kids were engaged, excited and very happy to be participating in STEM related fields. They learned many new skills while having fun. Several times I noted that articles in the Dominion Post, Mountaineer Enews, Twitter and Facebook each echoed the accolades of the program now in its third year. I have heard first-hand from several kids that attended and pleased parents about how much they enjoyed the program. There is excitement in that they want to continue learning about engineering and be innovators. Well done Cate, and keep smiling … it is contagious. – Paul Kritschgau – Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources

Renee Sulipeck

The definition of “exceeds” in the workplace means to go beyond one’s duties and responsibilities. One particular staff member of the College of Law goes the extra mile on a daily basis. Her name is Renee Sulipeck and she has worked at WVU for 28 years. Her primary duties as Senior Office Administrator include assisting the Dean and his support staff. Her secondary responsibilities include building management (currently keeping the building renovation moving smoothly), supervision of secretarial support staff, dissemination of need-to-know information, and just keeping the lights on and the doors open. These are just a few of the things that she does for us, but her real talent lies in her ability to maintain her wonderful sense of humor. She can deliver a message with both comedic sarcasm and respect, striking a chord with faculty and staff to get things done – with a smile on their face.

July 29

Christy Woodward

Christy Woodward (Office of Graduate Admissions and Recruitment) embodies Mountaineer spirit and goes above and beyond to help graduate school applicants through the application process. She also understands that serving departments and other WVU staff is part of our mission. Christy is knowledgeable about all aspects of processes and policies and does what it takes to serve applicants, students, faculty and staff. She constantly looks at things from the applicant’s point of view. She understands that student growth is where our future lies and does whatever it takes to make that growth a reality. Whether it is coming up with a new process, picking up the phone to call another university to clarify an issue with transcripts, or taking the extra time needed to resolve any issue, Christy puts others first and does it all with warmth and compassion. We are very lucky to have her in Graduate Admissions and Recruitment working with potential new Mountaineers! – Tracey Sheetz, Office of Graduate Admissions and Recruitment

Dave Olsen

Dave Olsen wears many hats at University Relations-Digital. Dave by trade is a programmer but he has many skills especially in content strategy. Dave has created many applications over the years but more recently worked on the PRT Status application, the admissions application status and the tuition estimator. Dave is forthright, forward-thinking and adapts early to new technologies which make him such an asset to the University. Currently he served as the project lead as well as a programmer for the new Undergraduate Admissions website at Dave is also very well-known for his presentations at technology conferences. He is the reason that WVU is known as a leader within higher education for responsive design. – Cathy Orndorff, University Relations-Digital

Dustin Mazon

Dustin Mazon is a professional technologist who is a designer at University Relations-Digital. Dustin recently designed the new WVU Undergraduate Admissions site at This project is the culmination of six months of work which included detailed research around future student’s practices, surveys and card-sorting. This site is very specialized with 26 templates. Dustin is hard-working, dedicated and calm as he tackles projects. Dustin is also the man behind the screen for the many HTML emails that are sent including GeeMail, the WVU magazine and other WVU messaging. Another specialty for Dustin is his training in Google Analytics and the creation of campaigns to track print, email and web usage. – Cathy Orndorff, University Relations-Digital

july 22

Ryan Campione

Ryan Campione at Information Technology Services is personally dedicated to advancing a University strategic goal, enhancing the well-being and quality of life for West Virginians. He’s involved in numerous civic activities and gives generously of his time to provide new and better opportunities to others. As an Eagle Scout and troop leader, he’s a great example. He volunteers on the weekends at scout camps and spends his personal time, money and energy to ensure young scouts can build their leadership skills, just as he built his through his scout experiences. Ryan is also deeply committed to science. Once a full-time employee and eligible to accumulate leave, he took his first week of earned leave to volunteer as a judge at science fair in Pittsburgh. Ryan’s eagerness to support programs like this helps to get others excited about research and addressing society's challenges. Ryan’s ITS peers chose him for an Outreach RockIT Award through

Senta Chmiel

Senta resolved technical issues that have cost Information Technology Services precious time during a critical part of two huge projects. The University is a beta partner in testing a complex new product that will become the new student portal. Senta’s creative thinking, proactivity and dedication to detail removed obstacles and kept the project moving. She also caught and corrected several issues with scripts the vendor delivered, giving the company feedback to help improve their product. It now will not only work more efficiently in the University’s environment, but also for other Ellucian clients. Senta is constantly looking out for the health and security of the database to ensure that the University has a stable product that can be supported in the most efficient manner. She finds clever solutions to problems, saves ITS time and money, and embodies the concept of Innovator. Senta’s peers in ITS chose her for an an Innovator RockIT Award through

Kathy Pepple

Kathy’s quiet, pleasant, helpful attitude inspires everyone she works with at Information Technology Services, whether as a customer or colleague. She provides excellent customer support for eCommerce users, sometimes meeting one-on-one with new store managers to make sure they are ready for their new responsibilities. She matches training materials to her presentation style, researches solutions when unusual or unprecedented requests arise, and ensures that if she has to be out of town, a replacement is fully trained so store openings are not delayed. Her willingness to collaborate on a team and display initiative in problem-solving extend beyond her eCommerce training and support efforts. Though she may start out with fewer skills than someone else learning new software, she can surpass them while exhibiting the same determination to find solutions. A colleague notes, "I and others would do well to emulate her." Kathy’s ITS peers chose her for a Role Model RockIT Award through

July 15

Deborah Blue

Deborah Blue is the “do everything” person at the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design’s Tree Fruit Research and Education Center in Jefferson County, WV. Her duties as a research assistant put her in the field on hot summer days, collecting data on damaging insects on our apple and peach crops. When she’s not in the field, she’s busy analyzing data, greeting visitors at the Center or keeping up with record-keeping and other necessary activities. Deborah is always willing to go the “extra mile” to make the Center a wonderful place to work and visit.​

Jeremiah Kibler

Jeremiah Kibler served as my supervisor when I was a Resident Assistant. Now we are both Residence Hall Coordinators. Jeremiah’s continued mentorship has ensured that I am well prepared to take on this new task. Jeremiah is also serving as Interim Assistant Director of Housing. He really takes his time to make certain that all aspects of student housing is the best for our students. His heart lies with giving our new Mountaineers a fresh and exciting start here at West Virginia University.

Jacob Kidwell

Jacob Kidwell is the Finance and Business Administrator for the Expert Business Office in Academic Affairs. He is amazing at his job – very knowledgeable and professional. Jacob is so patient and kind when explaining the rules and regulations required for dealing with financial issues at the University (even when he has to explain them more than once). He is always quick with a smile and just so helpful. Thank you Jacob, for all you do.

Maintenance and Service Staff

Thank you to the custodians for keeping everything clean and sanitary. Thank you to food service employees for all the great meals. We appreciate the plumbers who have miles of pipes to maintain. Thank you to the electricians for keeping everything running. The staff at Environmental Health Services work every day to ensure student safety. Thank you to the warehouse workers for taking care of millions of parts. Thanks to the maintenance staff for taking care of the residence halls, classrooms and other University facilities. These people, and many more, work behind the scenes to quietly affect WVU in a positive way. They bring piece of mind to students, their parents, faculty, staff and the community.

Berny Schreurs

Professor Berny Schreurs exemplifies the consummate WVU community member. In addition to consistently earning National Institutes of Health grants and advancing our understanding of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Alzheimer¹s Disease, Berny unfailingly contributes to the Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute and the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology. He generously shares his expertise through teaching, service on selection committees and as part of the Executive Staff of BRNI. As the director of the West Virginia Alzheimer¹s Disease Registry, Berny built a registry, which is recognized as a national model and routinely provides guidance to states developing their own registries. As a member of the Board of Directors for Valley Health Services, Berny ensures that the most vulnerable members of our community receive mental health care. – Shana Phares – Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute

July 8

Kathy Fletcher

Questions surrounding technology can be daunting, but Kathy Fletcher in Information Technology Services makes it a much easier and pleasant process. She always responds in a timely manner and in an easy-to-understand way. Moreover, there is always a kindness in her emails that demonstrates her commitment to great customer service. She has been a huge help to me and I appreciate her always going above and beyond to solve my ITS-related issues. ​

Adam Glenn

Adam Glenn is a professional technologist at University Relations-Digital who works as a front-end designer and programmer on the web pages for the University. If you have visited the West Virginia University home page, the brand page, Career Services, WVUToday and countless other sites you have viewed his work. He also approves and consults on all other web designs for the University. Adam is the consummate designer. His knowledge around accessibility, usability and technique is supreme. In addition to that, his work ethic is unbeatable. He is patient, persistent and a team player. Interestingly, Adam is named Adam Trotter Glenn so his University roots go deep to the ninth President of WVU-Frank Butler Trotter-Adam’s great-great-grandfather.

July 1

Jacqueline Dooley

Jacqueline Dooley, Program Coordinator in the Office of Student Activities, provides essential services to University students. The WVU Rack is a food pantry where students are encouraged to visit and take what they need. Students, faculty and staff are also encouraged to help stock The Rack when possible. Jacqueline greets everyone with a smile and a kind word. She directs students to fresh meats and vegetables, and ensures that students are treated with dignity, respect and kindness. Jacqueline and her staff exemplify those who are climbing higher. ​

June 24

Coy (CJ) Belknap

CJ Belknap from Adventure WV is a hardworking individual. The best asset CJ has to offer the University is his positive attitude and willingness to help anyone at anytime. He’s at the Student Rec Center when I arrive at 9 a.m. and when I close up at 9 p.m. He is in charge of the logistics, programming and operations of the Outdoor Education Center, which consists of the zip line canopy tour, odyssey challenge course and alpine climbing tower. His responsibilities range from training candidates on safety and liability to team building initiatives. CJ also has the responsibilities of maintaining and monitoring the small fleet of vans utilized by Adventure WV. Born and raised in rural West Virginia, CJ has the Mountaineer spirit running through his veins. ​

Jaime Bolyard

As a specialist in the Compensation Administration of the University’s Department of Human Resources, Jaime Bolyard has generously guided many different constituencies through the often-complex process of position review, classification and compensation. She works not only as an exemplary representative for Human Resources, but also serves as an ideal liaison between HR and WVU’s many other academic and non-academic units. From assisting in the proper preparation for hiring employees through her help in the development of WVU’s upcoming TALEO applicant tracking system, Ms. Bolyard has consistently proven to be personable, knowledgeable, understanding and always of great value to WVU and in advancing the mission of the University.

Jaime is a true pleasure to work with. She is knowledgeable about her job and goes above and beyond in her efforts to help others. If she doesn’t know the answer, she will try to find out. Jaime strives to provide solutions to any issues we present her with. She exemplifies how a WVU employee should represent their unit.

Gretchen Garofoli

Gretchen Garofoli, PharmD, BCACP, is a clinical assistant professor at the School of Pharmacy. She is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy and completed a Community Pharmacy Practice Residency at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is a 2013 graduate of the longitudinal Teaching Scholars Program at the WVU Health Sciences Center. Her current practice site is Waterfront Family Pharmacy where she focuses on diabetes care, immunizations, medication synchronization and medication therapy management, along with program development and implementation. She is active on a national level with the American Pharmacists Association’s (APhA) Awards Committee. Dr. Garofoli was the 2011 recipient of the West Virginia Pharmacists’ Association Distinguished Young Pharmacist Award, the 2015 national recipient of the APhA Distinguished New Practitioner Award, and is a National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Faculty Scholar, which highlights her research interests of diabetes, immunizations and pharmacist provided screenings.

Andrea Houde

Andrea Houde in the School of Music works tirelessly as a professor of viola to improve the School’s national recognition. She travels around the state and outside of West Virginia to recruit new students to the program. She is also an outstanding teacher who is loved and respected by her students. This summer Andrea organized and conducted a successful viola boot camp, which drew attendees from as far away as New Jersey and Florida. This was the second year for the boot camp, and it continues to grow in the number and caliber of the musicians. Andrea’s enthusiasm and energy are infectious and rub off on all of us who are lucky enough to get to learn from her. She is a wonderful ambassador for WVU and for the best things about being a Mountaineer. 

June 17

Sue Collins

A 17 year old was recently hospitalized at WVU Children’s Hospital for nearly two months. The patient and guardian agreed to participate in a clinical trial. Sue Collins from the Clinical Trials Research Unit was the study coordinator. In talking to the patient, Sue learned that this patient had been transferred to Ruby Memorial Hospital by ambulance and only had the clothes worn on the day of transfer. The patient’s family was more than three hours away and could not come to visit very often. Sue went shopping for basic necessities plus the teen’s favorite snack foods.​

Connie Jenkins

Several of us wish to recognize Connie Jenkins of Facilities Management. Connie’s daytime position is with the West Virginia and Regional History Center at the Downtown Campus Library. Her work assignment location is important because when someone asks her to give attention to another part of the building, Connie fixes it without waiting for a work order. During finals week – when people were using our building 24 hours each day – Connie worked on every floor of the Library to ensure it was presentable. She works with a smile from the time she arrives at 7 a.m. each day with a pleasant word for everyone. We think the Downtown Campus Library would crumble without her. Connie is vital to our operation. She is the best. – Deb Gallegly – Downtown Campus Library, Access Services

Ryan Pratt

Ryan is a multimedia specialist in Academic Innovation who has gone above and beyond when it comes to creating amazing visual content. He is always learning and improving. When asked to create an animated holiday card on short notice, Ryan rose to the occasion to create this animated short – Julie Black – Academic Innovation

Elizabeth Witter

Elizabeth Witter, better known as Beth, is the lead clinician/therapist on the inpatient Adult Unit at Chestnut Ridge Center. In this role she has done an outstanding job and she truly goes beyond what is expected of her. She is deeply committed to the welfare of our patients and, in addition to providing excellent treatment while they are inpatient, she has made several innovative suggestions to help improve outcomes post discharge. She is enthusiastic and energetic and, in addition to her regular duties, she is actively involved in our educational programs. We have psychiatric residents and students from several disciplines (medicine, pharmacy, social work, physician assistant) rotating on the unit and Beth has taken the initiative to help with orientation of the students as well as providing educational opportunities. She is also interested in research and has great ideas about developing a multi-disciplinary research program on the unit.

June 10

Nicole Beason

Nicole Beason is the Marketing and Events Coordinator for the IMC Program at Reed College of Media. Every May the IMC graduate program at Reed College of Media conducts an exceptional two-day conference packed with workshops, discussions and expert speakers including leaders in the marketing communication industry. The conference, known as INTEGRATE, has become a “can’t miss” event for students, graduates, faculty and prospective students. This year 250 attended. Planning and executing the event is a huge undertaking that consumes the time and energy of many in the Program’s administration, but Nicole is the one who assures that this annual event is flawless and nothing short of remarkable. Without a doubt it’s because of Nicole’s tireless efforts that the national reputation, stature and viability of IMC Program continues to rise.  – Dennis O’Connell, Cyndi Greenglass – Reed College of Media

Nicole is a thoughtful, well-organized professional with excellent public relations skills. She recently organized the IMC graduate conference, INTEGRATE, and did a superb job of bringing faculty, students and field professionals together for an outstanding interactive conference. She is a true asset to the program and the University in general.  – Helena Angell – Reed College of Media

Nicole did a fantastic job coordinating the annual INTEGRATE conference. Whether she was arranging flights, airport shuttles conference speakers or meals, she handled each element of the conference with professionalism and poise. She represented our university so well to students, faculty and guest speakers.​

Margaret Bolt

Margaret Bolt always goes above and beyond to help, including doing things outside her job description. She is the definition of “getting the job done.” In addition to being great at her job, she’s friendly and welcoming and makes coming to work fun! Not only can she be counted on to make work easier and more efficient, she will ALWAYS help someone in need, whether that means giving someone who is lost directions in the Health Sciences Center (a difficult task) or digging up documents only she could find. Margaret is also a Mountaineer super fan, and spends her non-working hours supporting our students and teams all year. She is a gem.

Allyson McKee

Allyson McKee is retiring at the end of June after being with the University for 43 years. During her last month she has given up her office to her replacement. Allyson did not want the new department head to have to wait a month and get her office, so Allyson has generously given up her office for a staff cubicle as she works her last month making sure the new department head is informed of all the important things that she needs to know to carry on the work here at the Libraries.  – Sherry Steadman – Libraries

June 3

Emily Vasile

Emily Vasile works hard to recognize the positive efforts of all the staff at the WVU Research Center. She has worked not only to organize the Center staff but has gone on to help facilitate growth among the larger School of Public Health. She volunteers for fundraising activities such as the United Way drive and is involved in many community activities, including volunteering to teach yoga classes to University employees and behavioral medicine patients. Emily is also active on the Morgantown Bicycle Board and helps organize employees for the annual Bike to Work Day.​ 

May 27

David Parker

David Parker is one of our best examples of a student-focused faculty member in the School of Public Health. He focuses on students needs, goals and engages in respectful interactions with all of our students. He works tirelessly to impart information and knowledge from his own vast experiences and instills enthusiasm for a variety of topics in epidemiology, including infectious diseases. Students flock to his courses and to his mentoring because of his consistent, honest and genuine approach. His enthusiasm is engaging and he cares about the wellbeing of our students and West Virginians. He helps our students climb higher every day.​

Priya Sankar

When I returned to the University recently, I needed to re-establish contacts necessary for my job. I asked who best to contact, and a number of people pointed me to Priya Sankar in Business Services. They were right. Priya provides courteous communications every time I speak with her. She also gives advice on how to handle different situations, answers in the most timely and professional manner and is a pleasure to work with.  – Todd Ralston – Extension Service

Victoria Wood

Vicky Wood manages payroll for the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. It’s a vast undertaking with more than 400 faculty, 500 graduate and student employees and 100 staffers. Vicky works very hard to make sure everyone receives his or her paycheck on time. She is unfailingly cheerful and greets every problem with a sense of humor and a smile. Her job is easily one of the most stressful in the college, yet she manages to make it look easy.  – Robert Phipps – Eberly College of Arts & Sciences, Information Technology

Sarah Woodrum

Sarah C. Woodrum serves as chief administrative officer and senior associate dean for the School of Medicine. Having worked in healthcare administration for more than 20 years, she has a wide range of knowledge and experience. A Morgantown native, she came home to Morgantown in 2013 and works to integrate various projects and initiatives related to the achievement of the School of Medicine¹s strategic plan. As a member of the senior leadership team, she works closely with the School’s department chairs and associate deans to provide an efficient and service-oriented infrastructure for the School¹s academic, research, service and clinical programs. Sarah, an expert in her field of heath policy, management and leadership, is a personable Mountaineer who stands in the gap for staff and faculty through change. She is a champion for collegiate coordination and advancement at the Health Sciences Center.

May 20

Elaine Christie
Elaine works at the Downtown Campus Library with our Distance Education students who need library materials. She provides the necessary attention so they receive books quickly. At our front desk, Elaine creates an enjoyable environment for patrons and colleagues. When staff members have moved on, Elaine has accepted extra responsibilities with enthusiasm. Her attention to detail is unfailing when learning new tasks and when training others. I try to keep in touch with Elaine through the summer when she takes some time off. Every August the department welcomes her back with open arms because throughout the summer, we truly feel her absence. If Mountaineers go first, allow me to put forth Elaine Christie’s name as one who Climbs Higher.  – Judie McCracken, University Libraries, Downtown Campus Library

Richard Strasburger
Dr. Richard Strasburger has worked at the University for more than 25 years. In that time, he has dedicated time and energy to serving students with disabilities. Dr. Strasburger went above and beyond as an accessibility specialist, spending countless hours to help those who were struggling. Currently, as the director of the Office of Accessibility Services, he still finds time to interact with and assist students. Dr. Strasburger believes in his colleagues and encourages their energy in working toward a common goal. Working with him is both an honor and a privilege. –Danielle Massullo, Office of Accessibility Services

May 13

Eric Coffman
Eric Coffman serves as the assistant director of Health Sciences Center ITS Application & Web Services. Eric is a dedicated director, mentor and coach to our staff. He provides a caring and supportive atmosphere for our team and its professional development. Eric inspires us through his passion and innovative thinking. He is committed to the student and faculty experience in our applications and projects. Having such a client focused director makes it easy for our unit to follow his model and provide a high level of service to all users, learners and educators. –Erin Bunner, Jack Dehlin, Kent Pirlo and Shawn King – HSC ITS Application & Web Services

Cheryl Ridgeway
Cheryl Ridgeway is the office manager in the department of Communication Sciences and Disorders and goes out of her way to assist faculty, students and clients seen in our speech and hearing Clinics. Her responsibilities are always completed on time and done correctly. Her work ethic and concern for others is evident in her interactions with those who need her assistance. Cheryl is simply an excellent staff resource. I would not be able to function without her and I know that my colleagues share the feeling. Recently, her current workload has increased significantly due to the illness of another staff member. This has not stopped Cheryl in performing her job at the highest level. Her contributions to the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders are simply outstanding.

May 6

Patricia Goldie
Pat Goldie is the administrative associate to the chairman of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering Department. Pat has always gone above and beyond the call of duty in helping and working with others, preventing problems before they develop. She is a warm and caring person who is deeply invested in the success of the department. She goes the extra mile to help our department grow and makes the University a great place to work because of her devotion to the department, staff and faculty. Pat is a true Mountaineer from Crawford, West Virginia.​

April 29

Selena Engebretson

Selena Engebretson is the chair’s administrative associate and handles the finances in the Department of Psychology. Selena has always gone above and beyond in helping others, solving problems and preventing problems before they develop. She is a funny, warm and deeply caring person who is deeply invested in the department’s staff, students and faculty. Selena helps keep this department running smoothly and I am so grateful to have her as a colleague. –Steven Kinsey, Department of Psychology

Derek Johnson

Derek Johnson, a research associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Sciences, is a perfect example of a Mountaineer “climbing higher.” He is a West Virginia native, the first person in his family to complete college and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from West Virginia University. He returned to the University from a job in industry to work as a researcher studying the effect of the oil and gas from an emissions perspective. His creativity and experiences, gained from living in West Virginia his entire life, have allowed him to pursue innovative research projects, reach across department lines to create new initiatives, be instrumental in a number of grants and to give back by educating his own graduate students. He is truly a WVU success story.​

Trey Wertz

Trey Wertz works in the Cost/Compliance Accounting unit of Financial Services. He is always organizing some charity, social gathering or chairing a public awareness event. Trey is head of the United Way for our unit and regularly sends out uplifting emails to encourage us on our 100 Miles in 100 Days effort. He makes friends wherever he goes and always has a smile to share. ​

April 22

Chris Boyer

Chris Boyer has received the first RockIT Award for Innovation in Information Technology Services for outstanding work on a project to replace the software behind the MyID system. Chris found ways to improve the vendor¹s coding to make it more efficient. The vendor was so impressed that it plans to feature his solution on its Center of Excellence and include the changes in an upcoming software release. Chris also saved WVU time and money by evaluating a software recommendation for workflow and determining the effort involved for ITS to build and support the tool was not in our best interest. He worked with the vendor to find a more efficient solution. Chris is always looking for creative, effective and efficient approaches to ITS operations and processes. When presented with a problem, he works to find the simplest and most supportable long-term solution. Read about the AwardU program at​

Constinia Charbonnette, Tammy Smith, Jeff Shao & Barbara dos Santos

Constinia Charbonnette is program director for Graduate Fellowships and Life. Tammy Smith is administrative assistant in the office. Jeff Shao works in Graduate Fellowships and Life as a graduate assistant. Barbara dos Santos is a graduate assistant in the Office of Graduate Education. All four did a wonderful job in organizing and implementing recent Graduate Student Appreciation Week activities, including the Three-Minute Thesis competition. They each put in long hours and dealt with last-minute issues with aplomb. Their dedication to enhancing the quality of life and showing concern for our many graduate and professional students across campus is greatly appreciated. –Katherine Karraker, Associate Provost for Graduate Academic Affairs)

Dylan Collins

Dylan Collins is an outstanding young faculty member in the School of Art and Design. Not only is he doing a fantastic job in his role as coordinator of the sculpture program, he has shown a genuine commitment to public service and outreach over the last few years. He is responsible for bringing artist Carol Hummel to Morgantown to create the crocheted tree covering (prominently located at the corner of Monongahela Blvd. and Patteson Dr.) on the Evansdale campus. The piece was executed with help from many members of the local community. Dylan also regularly organizes iron-pours that draw participants from all over the region to work together to create cast iron sculptures—including a metal bow tie for University President Gordon Gee.​

Shane Leiggi

Anyone who works with Shane Leiggi in Facilities Management Operations recognizes his work ethic and his desire to do things the right way. The positivity he brings to the workplace rubs off on those around him. He leads his own staff by example, and it is clear that he cares about the individual success of his team members. The Sustainability Office has been working with Shane to transition Evansdale buildings to single stream recycling. When a plan at a building changes, he rolls with it and does what it takes to make it happen anyway. We want him to know that it doesn’t go unnoticed. –Stephanie Toothman and Traci Knabenshue, Sustainability Office

Barry Wilt

Barry Wilt received three nominations to win the RockIT Award for Role Model in Information Technology Services for routinely taking leadership roles without being asked. While coordinating a new parking gates project, Barry took on a much larger role than anticipated, working after hours with a colleague to ensure a critical piece of the project got done at a critical point in the timeline. Barry went above and beyond to show the vendor exactly where the problem was and how to resolve it. Because of his efforts, ITS stayed on schedule with the project and preserved a productive relationship with the vendor. Barry takes this kind of approach to every project he¹s put on. Barry is very technical and analytical, but also very much a natural leader who is interested in self-improvement and growth. He even enrolled in the Mountaineer Leadership Academy. Read about the AwardU program at

April 15

Lisa Bridges

Lisa Bridges works behind the scenes to improve the visual stature of West Virginia University through her contribution in the areas of technology, graphic and web design. Lisa contributed to the efforts that led to the qualitative overhaul of the website of Academic Success Initiatives. She regularly designs promotional materials intended to support student success initiatives. Lisa also provides input on graphic design projects and the overall messaging being conveyed to students, their parents and other stakeholders. Lisa is talented, dependable, efficient and respectful of deadlines. She devotes a tremendous amount of time and attention to her work with competence, care, patience, attention to detail and warmth. ​

Corey Farris

Corey Farris represents West Virginia University by being someone who inspires confidence in our University as a place where students truly matter. As the dean of students, he is both reasonable and capable and works diligently to involve student organizations in activities benefiting both WVU and the greater Morgantown community. His work with Empty Bowls Monongalia has been a significant factor in The Rack (WVU’s student food pantry) becoming actively involved both as a recipient of Empty Bowls funding and as an active participant in the local fight against hunger. Corey Farris inspires cooperation and results with his positive attitude. As an administrator, his response is typically, “I think we can find a way to make that happen.” As a member of the WVU community, I can say without reservation our students and their families are lucky to have him. –Cheryl Prichard, Communication Sciences and Disorders

Eric Murphy

Since 2013, Eric Murphy has served Monongalia County as the Families & Health Extension Agent. He provides a wealth of programs to high-need, diverse audiences in the areas of relationship education, healthy lifestyles, diabetes, leadership, food safety and preservation. Eric is a valued leader, team colleague and community resource. Because of his contributions to program teams, his county and Extension, he is most deserving of this recognition. Eric sets an exceptionally high standard of professionalism and dedication for all University employees. Eric is building new bridges and thinking outside the box as he establishes innovative programs for communities. While providing a broad array of educational services, he focuses on impacting underserved populations (e.g., homeless, minorities, low-income, and special needs) with his relationship expertise. He is adept at collaborating, mentoring others and tapping resources to “put knowledge to work.” Every day, Eric demonstrates how we can all “climb higher.”​

Ashley Six-Workman

Ashley Six-Workman is the epitome of a person who “climbs high” for her profession on a daily basis. She is the Clinical Nurse Coordinator for the WVU Telepsychiatry Program and has worked diligently to provide services to many rural communities within West Virginia. Ashley seamlessly manages the provision of over 132 clinical hours per week (over 6,000 patients annually), which often requires travel to remote locations and working on weekends/after hours. Her dedication to providing quality care with kindness and professionalism is one that should be honored and recognized. Her passion and skill are the mainstays of our program’s success, and we are grateful for her.

April 8

Candy Long

Candy Long is a program assistant in Counseling, Rehabilitation Counseling and Counseling Psychology. She’s such a hard worker, always friendly and pleasant. Candy is also always willing to help others and goes above and beyond to help the staff and students. Thank you, Candy, for all you do. We truly appreciate you.​

Mariann “Cookie” Mankowski

Mariann “Cookie” Mankowski from the School of Social Work was a presenter at the Advanced Geriatrics Skills training event held March 26 – 28. This event is a premiere event sponsored by the WV Geriatric Education Center, training 67 professionals representing five disciplines. One of our presenters became ill. We needed a faculty partner to help with an Inter-professional Team Experience. “Cookie” graciously came out and saved the day. Without her assistance at the last moment, the other faculty members would have had to compensate, extending their time on a Saturday. Mariann “Cookie” Mankowski climbed higher and we appreciate her commitment. –Nancy Daugherty, WV Geriatric Education Center

March 25

Lori Blackwell

Lori Blackwell works in the WVU Research Corporation, Office of Sponsored Programs. She was the assigned reviewer for a Health Resources and Services Administration grant application prepared by the West Virginia Geriatric Education Center. Lori was very understanding regarding the approval process, including delays which limited her time to review attachments, budgets and requirements within the identified standards. She also stayed late the night before to ensure the grant was submitted prior to the due date. The due date was Thursday (March 5), when a snow storm which shut down the University. Lori climbed higher to assist the West Virginia Geriatric Education Center and her cooperation was very much appreciated. –Nancy Daugherty – West Virginia Geriatric Education Center

Michelle Green

Michelle shows a dedicated commitment to client services, both within the College of Law Entrepreneurship and Innovation Law Clinic and the LaunchLab. In her capacity as adjunct lecturer and clinic coordinator, she helps facilitate the law student-attorneys legal services in a positive, comprehensive and organized capacity. In doing so, she is instrumental in assuring that student and community entrepreneurs achieve their business plan goals. –Nancy Trudel, WVU College of Law Entrepreneurship and Innovation Law Clinic

Brian Wickline

I received the following email (edited) from a farmer who praises Brian’s work as an Extension agent in Monroe County. “My place borders the Greenbrier/Monroe county line. I bought some Monroe pool calves over the past few years and because my grandson is engaged in some 4-H activities, I¹ve come to know and work with Brian Wickline a fair amount. I hope WVU knows what a fine county agent Brian is. He is energetic, studies lots of subjects, is a good communicator, works real hard and I believe is sincerely committed to the farmers and people in general of Monroe County and in West Virginia. To sum it up, Brian is a fine model for a county agent in my opinion and I wanted to tell someone on campus. If you ever have the opportunity to pass along my compliments of Brian I hope that you will. – Paul Rodgers” –Keith Inskeep, Davis College, Animal and Nutritional Sciences

March 18

Naomi Boyd
Naomi Boyd completely embraces the University message in her role at the College of Business and Economics. She takes it upon herself to see that she contributes and makes a difference. While her selfless behavior is evident in many endeavors, it is her efforts towards financial literacy that stand out. So many students come to the University without the guidance to avoid financial pitfalls that begin with student debt, credit card debt and the like. Naomi headed up the College of Business and Economics’ efforts to create a path for graduates to become Certified Financial Planners. She extends that formal effort to individual students; seeing that they apply financial literacy tools to their own lives. She works with the West Virginia auditor as she trains high school teachers to extend these lessons to their students. Naomi climbs higher in her teaching, research and service to the state. –Paul Speaker, College of Business and Economics

March 11

Ralph Smith
Ralph Smith is a trade specialist in Maintenance Engineering at the Health Sciences Center, but his job doesn’t define him. Recently, the School of Medicine underwent an LCME reaccreditation site survey. Ralph spent the better part of three days escorting the site survey team around our facilities, serving as a humble, gracious and loyal ambassador. He was a beacon for the survey team in an otherwise overwhelmingly large and enigmatic facility. He spent time answering their questions about our University, our faculty and staff and our facilities with a warm and earnest attitude. So much so that the survey team mentioned his service in the preliminary findings report, an unprecedented occurrence. Ralph truly embodies the exceptional qualities of a proper Mountaineer, willing to #GoFirst, above and beyond his required duties. Ralph served his team well. For that, I am truly grateful. –Arthur Ross – School of Medicine)

March 4

Hanna Deuley
Hanna is the administrative secretary for the WVU Extension Office in Calhoun County, WV. It is an understatement to say she does a great job. Hanna is beyond helpful. She is very conscious about her work and is always on time. She has a love for West Virginia University and Extension that is evident by the quality of her work. Hanna does not complain when under pressure to complete a project. She puts her nose to the grindstone and gets things accomplished. –Nancy Bremar, Extension-Calhoun County

February 25

Kristi Wood-Turner
As director of University College’s Learning and Engagement at University College, Kristi Wood-Turner exemplifies the values that we all hold true as Mountaineers. She provides tireless leadership and energy for all that she is involved with, including her positions as director with the Center for Service and Learning, director with the Regents Bachelor of Arts program, resident faculty leader with Boreman Hall and instructor with the Sociology and Anthropology Department in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. Known for her abilities to think strategically, speak with passion (and volume) and for designing innovative and impactful programs for students, Kristi brings light and focus to our University. She is an example for any aspiring young professional, having achieved much while making the balance between career and family needed in today’s world look easy. In addition, Kristi has dedicated herself to keeping the importance of service relevant in higher education with the recent launch of the Million Hour Match initiative at the University. –Alexis McMillen, University College, Center for Service Learning

February 18

Thea Browne
A veteran employee of University Libraries, Thea exemplifies one who performs beyond expected goals and walks the second mile for both the public and her colleagues. Thea solves problems creatively, assists co-workers cheerfully and accepts additional responsibilities readily. One example of all three characteristics is a time when she willingly worked at the Downtown Campus Library’s busy Assess Services desk during a meeting that required all Access Services staff. Thea is the dean’s assistant and she crossed departmental lines to pitch in. She used skills from her former job at the University to help and delayed her lunch by 90 minutes. She also recently chaired a committee to revitalize the Libraries’ Staff Association, which instituted by-laws and defined specifications for a classified staff award. –Judi McCracken, Downtown Campus Library

Erin Bunner
Erin Bunner, a Health Sciences Center Information Technology Services Application and Web Support Manager, goes above and beyond on a regular basis to provide support to the faculty, staff and students. In addition, Erin also fosters a constructive and unified working environment. Erin¹s shared knowledge and encouragement to pursue any interests that benefit the clients ensures that the support staff can provide the highest quality of services. She maintains a positive attitude and teamwork mentality that builds a team based on trust and creates an atmosphere that is both productive and fun. Erin’s enthusiasm for the work and genuine personality is contagious. As a result, we all strive to work harder for our clients. Thank you Erin for all that you do. –Web/App Support Team, HSC Information Technology Services

Lisa Lewis
Lisa has been a dedicated University employee for almost 25 years, rising through the ranks from secretary to administrative assistant in the Davis College Division of Resource Management. During that time, she has worked tirelessly to help students, faculty and fellow staff members meet all three of the University’s mission areas: teaching, research and service. For example, although not part of her job, Lisa does not hesitate to go out of her way to help students in need by connecting them with the right academic resources. She also goes the extra mile to help faculty with everyday problems from classroom scheduling to computer issues and last minute typing or copying. She gladly pitches in for fellow staff members when they can’t work due to an appointment or illness. –Gerard D’Souza, Davis College Division of Resource Management

February 11

University Relations Design Team
I wanted to give recognition to all of my design team. Every one is working hard and going above and beyond when it comes to getting the job done. This is truly a talented team that works together within the unit and collaboratively with the rest of the University community. The team has a passion for creativity and problem solving and it shows in the work produced. This team thinks of innovative ideas that inspire and move the University forward. Each member works to make the work environment a fun place to be and encourages us all to be better at what we do. I just want to say, “Thank You” for going the extra mile and striving to always be better. Way to go! –Angela Caudill, University Relations​

Deanna Whorton
We would like to recognize Deanna Whorton for her outstanding work ethic in the Vice President for Research Office. Deanna is always very competent and professional but we want to highlight the fact that she’s gone above and beyond in the last two weeks. During this time, in addition to her other duties, she has coordinated receiving and processing the applications for three internal grant programs, while also organizing the review process. Her organizational skills and willingness to climb higher help keep the research process on track here at the University. –Melanie Page, Vice President for Research Office

Karen Wilfong
Karen is a long-time member of the Conference Services staff at Jackson’s Mill. She is always helpful and courteous and goes out of her way to assist the thousands of guests that utilize Jackson’s Mill each year. From 4-H camps to church groups to Mountaineer Boys’ State, Karen makes everyone who visits Jackson’s Mill feel welcome and at home. She is a true guest services professional. Karen’s objective is always to be the best employee and provide the best service possible. She never acts for her own self-interest or to gain recognition. She believes in what she does, and she always recognizes that the role she plays is a vital part of the overall mission of both WVU and the Cooperative Extension Service. –Chad Proudfoot, Extension Service/Jackson’s Mill

February 4

Lori Acciavatti
Lori works as a professional technologist in the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center. She is extremely dedicated to her work and always goes the extra mile in helping out with special projects. Lori regularly goes above and beyond to ensure that sure technical issues are promptly resolved. She juggles multiple projects without complaint and executes them beautifully. Along with being a talented employee, she is nice, caring and funny. Lori is an amazing person to work with each day. –Dannell Boatman, Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center

Stephen Douglas
I am nominating Stephen “Steve” Douglas at the WVU Alumni Association for his life-long commitment to the University and its alumni. He furthers the mission of the university everyday and loves what he does. Currently he is battling a hiccup with his health and, throughout his ordeal, has been working every day with an upbeat confidence and zest for life. He continues to be at the helm of our organization and exudes a positivity that is truly a breath of fresh air, instilling confidence in the staff that he will overcome the challenges set before him and his family. The staff and I truly appreciate his talents and knowledge that comes with more than 30 years of service and leadership. –Mary Kinsley, WVU Alumni Association

January 28

Natalie Caravasos
I have worked with Natalie on many occasions and she always responds quickly to any issues. She monitors air quality in student rooms and conducts asbestos checks all over campus. If we have a water leak, Natalie is there right away to oversee the situation. She follows up on the work and ensures that students are happy and safe. I am proud to work with her. –Jeff Davis, Environmental Health & Safety

Brian Gibson
Brian Gibson is the first recipient of the RockIT Role Model award in Information Technology Services for going above and beyond every day. He provides support at all hours to students, athletics and more. Since taking a leadership role in managing the wireless network, he’s shown skill, determination, empathy for users and unsurpassed willingness to work until the job is done. He often works in the middle of the night and on his own time to ensure staff, faculty and students are able to do their work without interruption. Along with this tenacity, Brian is always willing to lend a hand to a co-worker in need. He does all of this without craving accolades or attention. Brian wants to do a good job because that’s who he is. Brian was chosen through a competitive nomination process and judged by his peers. Read about how the ITS AwardU program works at –Vicki Smith, Information Technology Services

P. Brett Kenney
P. Brett Kenney, an associate professor at the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design, is dedicated to his teaching and extension work. He is also kind, gentle and caring to all the students and co-workers in the department. Many international graduates and faculty who work in the department feel that the University is among the best as a result of his fairness and loving personality. –Hao Ma, Animal and Nutritional Sciences

Debbie Koon
Debbie Koon has been an employee with the University for more than 30 years. She has worked in Public Administration for most of those years. Debbie has assisted many students, faculty and other staff members in more ways than could be told in just a few sentences. She is willing to go the extra mile to help anyone in any way possible. I have known Debbie to stay late to accomplish work for various faculty members, to work with students on extra curricular activities and be content to stay in the background with no recognition. Debbie may be my sister, but I firmly believe she is a true example of the type of employees needed here at the University. I am proud that she’s setting this example, not only for other employees, but also for students who leave the University thankful to have known Debbie. –Rebecca Digman, Office of International Programs

Kathy Ramsey
Kathy Ramsey has been a part of the University’s Information Technology Services department since its infancy. Beginning in the Controller’s office, she was instrumental as a developer in automating many business processes along with building the first interface of the University’s Accounts Payable to the State of West Virginia. She also received several commendations from past University presidents for her efforts in advancing technology. Kathy will be retiring after 38 years of service. She’s currently an application administrator for Administrative Systems in Information Technology Services. She has provided a solid foundation to Operations and her expertise within the financial technology services will be greatly missed. Thank you Kathy for your years of contribution to the University. –Michelle Rodney and Laci Cale, Information Technology Services

Ted Wiles
Ted Wiles is the first recipient of the Information Technology Services RockIT Award for Outreach for outstanding efforts to improve the well-being and quality of life of West Virginians. Using Facebook and his network of friends and colleagues, Ted collected presents and cash contributions to buy gifts, ensuring that sick and/or needy children had happy holidays. In all, he distributed presents to 37 children. The donations also included roughly 200 brand-new Beanie Babies, which Ted delivered after the holidays Children’s Hospital and the Ronald McDonald house. “Caring for Christmas” began when Ted learned about a Preston County child with cancer. The Dominion Post learned about his initiative and described how he turned great personal loss into generosity instead of bitterness. Ted was chosen through a competitive nomination process and judged anonymously by his peers. Read about how the ITS AwardU program works at –Vicki Smith, Information Technology Services

January 21

Danny Bonner

Danny Bonner (Human Performance Lab, Health Sciences Center) has put in countless hours as a professor and exercise physiologist. He has shaped lives through his teaching, as well as helped people achieve a healthier lifestyle through rehabilitation, proper exercise and nutrition. He never seeks attention for his work. Instead, he goes about each day with a smile on his face, looking for ways to make a positive impact in students’, co-workers’ and patients’ lives. I am so thankful to call Danny Bonner “Dad” and to have grown up seeing his passion for West Virginia and the University. –Derek Bonner, Office of the Provost

Jodie Lewis

As Administrative Associate for the School of Music (College of Creative Arts), Jodie Lewis truly embodies the spirit, energy, and initiative that drives our school and programs forward. During her many years of service, Jodie has helped bring countless new students into the School, helped current students manage many different aspects of the administrative side of their education, assisted faculty and staff far beyond the call of duty and generally been a rock upon which everyone can safely rely. I’m afraid this attempt to list reasons for her recognition pales in comparison to the reality of her contributions as colleague and as a friend. She truly represents the best of West Virginia and the University. –Chris Nichter, School of Music

January 7

Bob Pirner

Bob Pirner (Native American Studies) inspires compassion for people and passion for learning with his students. From introducing students to native studies to hands-on knowledge about native culture with many trips to different events and places throughout the year, Bob uses his years of growing up on the reservation, speaking Lakota and facing native issues first-hand as a springboard for cultural understanding. Students regularly say that Bob transcends academic knowledge as he is a living testament of everything that he’s teaching and gives a world of insight to those taking his classes. –Matthew Spencer, Financial Aid

Phil Lemon

Phil Lemon (WVU Police) goes above and beyond by adjusting his work schedule so he can perform a lot of different programs for the University and community. He has done “Violence in the Work Place” training for almost every department in the University, a lot of the banks in the community as well as for the healthcare facilities in the area. He is the only person who does golf cart training and van training for the entire University, as well as new employee training for everyone in facilities. –Chad Barker, WVU Police

Alison Tartaglia

Alison Tartaglia (WELLWVU Office of Wellness and Health Promotion) serves as a Health Education Specialist in the WELLWVU Office of Wellness and Health Promotion. She also serves as the Principal Investigator on the Department of Justice Office of Violence Against Women Grant to Reduce Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence and Stalking on Campus grant. From the time that we began talking about applying to this grant program, through implementation, Ali amazes me with her commitment to making WVU victim-centered and her ability to be patient while making incremental changes. She helps the institution tackle difficult problems many others would balk at including sexual assault, power-based personal violence, smoking cessation, alcohol abuse and other intractable problems on campus. And she does all of this while working on her PhD in Public Health. I have no doubt that WVU is a better place for students because of Ali’s efforts! –Erica Bentley, Student Life

December 17

John Brick

Dr. Brick (Department of Neurology) is a lifelong West Virginian that understands the important and the unique mission of providing neurological care to the people of this state. Without the Department of Neurology under his leadership, this state would have almost no neurological care. Under his leadership he has continued to improve the care and lives of not only the patients we serve but also the faculty and trainees he leads. –Matthew Smith, Department of Neurology

Steve Adams

Steve (Facilities Management) is the kind of guy that will drop everything to help you out. Steve has worked in the Plumbing Shop and FM Engineering for years and is a wealth of knowledge. He is instrumental in keeping the steam and plumbing systems of WVU working. Even though retirement is on the horizon, Steve still works as hard as ever and I commend him for that. It is an honor to work with employees like Steve Adams. –Scott Jolliff, Facilities Management

Robert Barricelli

Robert’s official job title is Division of Forestry & Natural Resources Recruiter, but he does so much more for the Division. He also helps with almost anything related to students, including providing faulty with Degreeworks guidance, keeping the student Clubs on track, updating all the Program & Division social media accounts, sharing internship and job announcements with faculty and students, helping Programs with curriculum reorganizations, and the list goes on and on. Rob is tireless and never says no! He is an indispensable part of our Division, and is a wonderful representative for WVU!!! –Dave Smaldone, Division of Forestry & Natural Resources

Melissa Jenkins

Melissa (Eberly College of Arts & Sciences Dean’s Office) is always willing to help me any time I have a question! She always responds promptly and never hesitates to go out of her way to make sure my question has been answered. I’m sure she gets tired of the countless emails I send her, but I genuinely appreciate all of her help! –Megan Moore, Departments of Physics and Astronomy

Joan Baldwin

Joan Baldwin (WVU Extension Service) is a remarkable member of WVU’s Extension Service, who works for our WVU Family Nutrition Program as a Youth-Nutrition Outreach Instructor located in the Kanawha County Extension Office; also the Presidents Staff Council member for WVU. She is dedicated first and foremost to her WVU…her job with WVFNP, teaching nutrition curriculum, working her summer camps, helping fund raisers and health fairs in our community, working and not missing any State Fairs, to represent WV University. She has been a noteworthy advisor behind the scenes with WVU staff when requested, what ever the serious work issues be…she knows her WVU and what areas of expertise one can find and refers staff to the appropriate WVU Department for assistance. This person completes her job(s), and more…she is endearing to the end with her love and respect for our President of WV University, President E. Gordon Gee. –Karen Stover, WVU Extension Service

November 19

Roger Jefferys

Roger Jefferys (Facilities) does an exceptional job keeping things operational at OWP. He did an outstanding job with the massive employee relocations due to the recent ITS reorganization by quickly replacing lights, adjusting thermostats, and volunteering any other assistance. Roger is very dependable and accessible on a daily basis. He always goes out of his way to lend a helping hand and is a pleasure to have around the office. –Laci Cale, ITS

Chris Tarabrella

Chris Tarabrella is the Facilities Manager for the Eberly College of Arts & Sciences Dean’s Office. She has been with WVU for nearly 40 years, beginning as the Dean’s secretary for Bill Collins. Over the years her role has changed, from being the person in charge of records for promotion and tenure to now serving as the facilities manager. Her title doesn’t convey the depth of work that she performs every day. From turning in trouble tickets to fixing leaky faucets, to moving furniture to the coordination of construction and renovation of multi-million dollar buildings, Chris does it all. –Robert Phipps, Eberly College of Arts & Sciences

November 12

Nathan Acosta

As Project Director, Nathan Acosta (CPASS) has been instrumental in the success of The McDowell CHOICES Project which provided support for every school in McDowell County to develop a comprehensive school physical activity plan, and to enhance the physical activity opportunities in each school through additional equipment, after-school programming, certified/trained community physical activity leaders, and community outreach and promotion. “The CHOICES program has drastically improved the excitement about student physical activities. Not only has it improved the physical education classroom environment but the after school programs have benefited as well” said McDowell School Superintendent Nelson Spencer. Students from all of McDowell County’s public schools gathered on Thursday, Oct 23 at the Welch Armory to celebrate and demonstrate physical activities provided by the McDowell CHOICES Project. At the Let’s Move McDowell Physical Activity Celebration, more than 500 students performed physical activity demonstrations representing new activities that have taken place at their schools this year. –Sean Bulger, CPASS

Nick Bowman

Dr. Nick Bowman (Department of Communication Studies) is heavily involved with students at WVU, working to help them reach higher in many areas of service and scholarship. For undergraduates, Dr. Bowman brought them into the community using experiential learning class projects (e.g., designing social media campaigns for local businesses). He’s also provided students with hands-on professional experience, both as research assistants in the Interaction Lab, as well as coordinating the Social Media Internship program within the COMM department. They present their work at academic conferences, including at ECA that resulted in them adopting a WVU-student created social media plan. He’s escorted 20-plus students to Germany on a nine-week semester abroad where they intensely study dimensions of international communication. Dr. Bowman helps students Climb Higher by challenging them to apply their education beyond his own exams and essays – pushing them to connect their scholarship to the larger world, and pushing all of his Mountaineers. –John Cole, Department of Communication Studies

General McArthur Hambrick

General McArthur Hambrick (Department of Dance) is a teacher truly invested in the care and success of his students. He always makes himself available to any student needing extra instruction or coaching, be it a dance major or a beginner student in a dance fundamentals course. His classes are known to be fun, yet at the same time, the expectations he has for his students are very high and the instruction excellent. He pushes them to be their best in every way. General’s leadership reaches well beyond dance technique classes in mentoring students. His positive attitude is infectious and he is well known and liked in the university community and beyond. As a colleague he is a trusted consultant and listening ear, always invested in a creative solution. WVU dance department is fortunate to have such a passionate, dedicated teacher with such a wealth of knowledge,talent and experience. –Maureen Kaddar, Dance

Beverly Riffon

Beverly Riffon (ITS) exemplifies what leadership at WVU should mean. As a member of Information Technology Services (ITS) Database Administration group, leading the group since 2007, Beverly has been a key player in the success of many technology projects including but not limited to the original implementation and all upgrades of MAP, STAR system upgrades, eCampus and MyID implementations and upgrades. Beverly leads by example, and lives and breathes the values of team, relationship building, commitment and integrity. She is always available when needed, be it day or night. She is a positive and trusted leader that is committed to the President’s and University’s goals and daily contributes to ITS’s ability to achieve these. Thank you, Beverly! –Your colleagues in ITS

November 5

Donna Heis

Donna Heis (Dining Services) exhibits the true spirit of a Mountaineer. She goes above and beyond to ensure the dining hall and grab & go are the best they can be. Her devotion to this displays her knowledge and professionalism. I can only compare her treatment of staff and students to that of a mother caring for her own children. Her sacrifice and commitment are proof of this. She does not need to climb higher, but she will. –Robert Spacht, Dining Services

Wayne Lundstrom

Wayne Lundstrom is the director of the National Resource Center, an OSHA Education Center located within WVU’s Safety and Health Extension. The National Resource Center was recently ranked 3rd nationally for total professional students trained, total courses held, and total contact hours. OSHA Education Centers provide knowledge to industry professionals of safety and health regulation, policy and requirements through extensive training courses. WVU Safety and Health Extension represents OSHA Region III, conducting courses throughout WV, PA, DE, MD, DC and VA. Wayne has been instrumental in maintaining the quality and impact of the Center. His passion for the safety and health of American workers, shines through the accomplishments of the OSHA Education Center. For this reason, I nominate Wayne as a Climb Higher candidate – as he continues his rugged pursuit to maintain a safe and healthful work environment through training and research. –Tiffany Rice, Safety and Health Extension

Brice Knotts

Brice Knotts (OIT) has been, and continues to be, an integral part of the successful roll-out of WVU’s student health insurance requirement. He has been unfailingly patient, thorough, and helpful as we’ve all navigated this first year. His promptness and attention to detail have helped us to better serve the students and families of WVU. We are extremely grateful for his tireless assistance; he is simply indispensable. –Toni Christian, Human Resources

October 15

Katherine Aaslestad

Dr. Katherine Aaslestad (professor of history at the Eberly College) serves as the Rhodes Scholarship Faculty Advisor at WVU. In this voluntary role, she is tireless in her efforts to encourage WVU students to dream big, realize their potential, and widen their horizons. She spends countless hours with each candidate, talking about why they want to go to Oxford University and how that accomplishment will fit into their larger personal and professional goals. Applying for a Rhodes Scholarship is a very long shot. Applicants accept that the odds of winning are small. But applying for a Rhodes Scholarship at WVU means you get the wisdom, encouragement and support of Dr. Aaslestad. That means that the odds of having a good experience that allows you to grow and develop is a sure thing. –Amy Cyphert, ASPIRE

Darcy Kisko

Darcy Kisko (Academic Affairs) is an extraordinary example of Mountaineer service and support amid a humble demeanor. Darcy is the concierge for everything from the moving targets of hiring nuances, payroll and leave questions, and general University operations. While assisting individuals navigate systems and policies, she continues to present a very polite and courteous attitude. Darcy is a real gem! –Sue Day-Perroots, Academic Innovation

September 24

LaDonna Gardner

We visited the Potomac State campus for a personal tour for my daughter. We have visited many college campuses in the past couple of months because my daughter has been recruited to play lacrosse. No one has treated us with such respect, care and dedication to helping as LaDonna Gardner (Potomac State College Enrollment Services) and those at Potomac State. She was very hands-on in helping us and made sure that we received all the information that we needed while there and any additional questions after we left. She has gone above and beyond for making sure my daughter has all the information that she needs and to ease my mind as a parent. I can’t thank her enough (and all the PSC staff and coaches)! –Jennifer Bennett, ITS

John Shibley

Dr. John Shibley (Department of Communication Studies) began teaching at WVU in 1969 as an assistant professor in the Speech Department. After it evolved into the Communication Studies Department, he remained a faculty member and became a curriculum adviser. Because he was such an integral part of their learning process, many of his former students and advisees have kept in contact with him over the years. I have heard many times that he has a passion for the subjects he teaches and this rolls over into his personal life. One such class he teaches relates to non-violence. He attends workshops and conferences bringing back new and engaging ideas. He has guest speakers not only come into his classes, but he has personally gone out into the community to invite anyone who is interested to come share first-hand experiences with the presenters. When and if Dr. Shibley decides to retire, he will be missed. –Renee Kisner, Department of Communication Studies

September 17

HOST (Heralds of Student Tours)

Heralds of Student Tours (HOST) is a student initiative at the WVU School of Medicine. This group of volunteer students organizes and runs the tours given to WVU School of Medicine candidates when they are on campus for their interview. This group maintains a weekly schedule of tour guides, 4 days a week, as well as organize the tour itself and the Simulation laboratory time. The end result is a fantastic group of eager and enthusiastic students representing our medical school in the best possible fashion. The response from candidates regarding the success of this program has been extremely positive. They deserve recognition of identifying a way to make our candidate experience stronger and a true representation of the spirit of WVU and the School of Medicine. –Hannah Hazard, Health Sciences

Kathy Camp

Kathy Camp (ITS) is a very hard working individual who has proven time and time again that she is capable of accomplishing anything she puts her mind to. Recently I worked with Kathy on a project and I was amazed by her dedication. She showed everyone involved that she could take on the project, learn a system that she had never used before and understand the processes in a short amount of time. She proved that she is up to any task and is an experienced business analyst. –Barry Wilt, ITS

Janie Howsare

Janie Howsare (Health Sciences) is the new director of the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program at WVU. She has been extremely responsive in providing assistance to Employee Relations on a wide variety of situations since she has come into this role. She is professional, timely and has demonstrated a caring approach for the needs of both the employees and the University. We are grateful for her collaboration with our department and appreciate her enthusiasm and vision for this important role in the organization. –Amber Tennant, Human Resources

Beverly Riffon

Beverly Riffon (ITS) goes above and beyond what is required of her position. I have worked with her since I was hired at WVU in 2000 and I can honestly say she is the most reliable coworker I’ve ever had. –Mike Straight, ITS

September 10

Kolin Brown

Being a West Virginia local and a WVU alumni, Dr. Kolin Brown (Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources) helped his colleagues within the WVU Shared Research Facilities to quickly adapt the life of WVU. –Wei Ding, Research Corporation

Kathy Camp

Kathy Camp (ITS) is a very hard working individual who has proven time and time again that she is capable of accomplishing anything she puts her mind to. Recently I worked with Kathy on a project and I was amazed by her dedication. She showed everyone involved that she could take on the project, learn a system that she had never used before and understand the processes in a short amount of time. She proved that she is up to any task and is an experienced business analyst. –Barry Wilt, ITS

Kent Campbell

Kent Campbell (Office of the University Registrar) works tirelessly to help all the Eberly departments program their major requirements into DegreeWorks. We appreciate his infinite patience when we bombard him with requests for the impossible! He is always calm, always helpful, listens to our long lists of wishes—and then, he makes it happen! We may ask the same questions over and over, he always answers graciously. The Eberly College appreciates his efforts to take customer service to the next level! Thank you, Kent. –Valerie Lastinger, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences

Eli Heady

Eli Heady (ITS) is the primary systems administrator working on the migration of University Relations web hosting environment. He has worked tirelessly to build and and support the new architecture over the past 18 months. The project has required work outside of regular business hours at times to avoid disruption of existing services, and Eli has worked hard to maintain the high availability and quality of service that we have come to expect. –Cathy Orndorff, University Relations

Melissa Sotelo

Melissa Sotelo (Human Resources) has always been very pleasant and responsive to work with. The hiring process can be cumbersome and lengthy, but Melissa knows the Human Resources process well and has helped to expedite the process in a timely manner. She takes the time to work with you and understands the needs of the office in order to give you useful and helpful information during this process. She has excellent people skills and can communicate clearly and concisely. I am grateful to have worked with Melissa on several employment hires. She has made this process go smoothly. –Angela Caudill, University Relations

Dorian Williams

Dr. Dorian Williams (Health Sciences) is a TRUE representation of a “Mountaineer.” His relentless commitment to patient care coupled with his over 30 years contributions to clinical research and his “down to earth” humility collectively make him a perfect model for Climb Higher. He a hidden treasure within the WVU institution. There are hundreds of lives every day affected and helped through his direct engagement with patient care and clinical development. –Allie Karshenas, Health Sciences

August 27

Barbara Bodkins

Most people do what is expected of them on the job but Barbara Bodkins (Human Resources) goes above and beyond. She has been more than helpful to Staff Council when it comes to elections and, more recently, the use of VoteNet for a survey. Barbara painstakingly makes sure Staff Council elections run as smooth as possible. We still use some paper ballots and she attends the locations to make sure ballots are properly cast and accounted for. Whenever any one of us has sent her a question, she is quick to respond. Barbara took it upon herself to create an alternative solution to a VoteNet issue. Her knowledge, helpfulness and pleasant demeanor are what makes Barbara the perfect Climb Higher candidate! On behalf of Staff Council, we thank you! –Lisa Martin, Events

Eva Hajian

Eva Hajian (Procurement, Contracting and Payment Services) has completed a Bachelor and two Master’s degrees. The second was obtained while holding a full-time job in the contracting and purchasing shop for WVU. She has managed to take on the imposing task of mentoring and training me in the way of WVU contracts. For the last three months she has patiently answered all my questions of “Why do you do things that way?” or “Wouldn’t it be easier if we did…?” She tirelessly supports other contracting specialists and purchasing agents in addition to the training of new employees. –April Smith, Procurement, Contracting and Payment Services

Joyce Moore

Joyce Moore (Environmental Health & Safety) continues to improve the University’s safety and compliance initiatives in her position at EHS. In just under four years, she has completely overhauled the waste management program for chemical and hazardous wastes. She has reduced costs and liability, while still providing over-the-top service to the university community from Morgantown to Montgomery and Jackson’s Mill to Kearneysville. –Paul Porter, Environmental Health & Safety

Kate Padula

“Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to high sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.”—Peter Drucker Kate Padula (Office of Admissions) is a true leader. She provides the guidance, resources, and foundation needed to progress while allowing each of her staff enough autonomy to develop our own strategic plans, and in turn, our own professional skills. She works diligently to bring all of our plans together for the advancement of our office and our profession. She manages all of this with grace and poise, and we are proud to recognize her for the contributions she has made to our work, our lives, and to this university. –Barbara Mullinix, Office of Admissions

August 20

Chad Proudfoot

Chad Proudfoot (Extension Service) began serving WVU as a member of the marching band, where he won the outstanding Freshman of the Year Award. He continued to serve throughout his undergraduate and graduate years in various organizations, even working in the President’s office and Career Services Center. Upon graduation, he was employed at WVU as a program coordinator, extension officer, and now as the 4-H program director in Taylor County. Outside of WVU, Chad has served on the Governor’s Committee for Historical Preservation, Chair of the Mother’s Day Shrine, and Chair of the Taylor County Memorial Day Committee. Chad always has a smile and kind word for everyone he meets and proudly proclaims that he is proud to be a West Virginia Mountaineer from birth to death. –Angela Fiore, Department of Psychology

Evan Widders

Dr. Evan Widders (Multidisciplinary Studies Program) has become an invaluable resource for WVU through the Multidisciplinary Studies Program in the Eberly College and Arts and Sciences. The program started in 2007 and has grown into one of the most popular majors in ECAS and in the University. Dr. Widders has worked tirelessly on behalf of many students and has guided them towards graduation and careers. He has also put together a fantastic group of faculty from across disciplines, and created a work environment that caters to the strength of each faculty member in his program. He continues to set the standard of excellence in teaching, advising, and service learning, as well as continuing to grow as a program coordinator with one of the fastest growing majors at WVU. He works tirelessly to maintain good relations with the minor programs the MDS program works with to create truly student-centered learning. –Renee Nicholson, Multidisciplinary Studies Program

Lee Silverman

Lee Silverman (Information Technology Services) has gone above and beyond to assist our office with various computer-related issues. He is always so cheerful, helpful and above everything else, professional and patient. I just want to thank him for all his help. He’s doing a great job! –Lory Osborn, Academic Affairs

August 13

Charles Friend

Chuck Friend (Facilities) goes out of his way every day to help in the keeping the buildings heaters, plumbing and AC’s going. He is a very hard working person who does help keep WVU what it is.  –Jeffrey Davis, Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design

Amy Keesee

As president of WV Chapter of the Association for Women in Science, Dr. Amy Keesee (Department of Physics) has successfully implemented “Expanding Your Horizons in Math and Science (EYH)” programs in locations throughout the state. Some of these events have taken place in rural middle schools to show girls that math and science are fun. She created a database of scientists, mathematicians and engineers who would regularly commit to donating their time to an EYH conference for young girls. Amy, who in the early stages of her career, has demonstrated exemplary leadership skills. She is committed to raising the awareness of young women to careers in science, is a mentor to many and an inspiration to all women in the STEM field. Amy has reached out to professional women at WVU and throughout the state because she is committed to creating a robust workforce of women in STEM professions.  –Linda Vona-Davis, Health Sciences

August 6

Julie Cryser

Julie Cryser (Davis College) is the development officer for the Davis College, and she does extraordinary work every day in so many ways. She not only meets and exceeds the fund raising targets for the Davis College, but helps the college with all kinds of related advancement, events and partnership building work. She has been a driving force behind funding efforts for new curricula in the college, for new equipment on college farms, for enhanced student and faculty support, for nomination of distinguished alums, and so much more. She is a terrific professional, a great team player, and a critical member of the college team. Through her ideas and actions she encourages us and helps make it possible for the college and its people to climb higher at WVU! –Dan Robison, Davis College

Maria Gaddis

Amongst those who climb higher every day and deserve accolades at WVU is Maria Gaddis (Program Manager, College of Education and Human Services). Maria is the epitome of dedication to student success in her many roles over the years at WVU. From teaching intensive English as a college senior in 1989 to her current endeavors (developing programs, academic advising, and providing a training workshop with all the needed resources for students to assist them in passing the Praxis Core Tests), she is an amazing person! As a co-worker, she is always pleasant to be around and is warm, caring and thoughtful. Sometimes we even laugh at her clever remarks and whimsical musings. She maintains a positive attitude and definitely has the team spirit. So for these and many more than 150 words can describe, Maria Gaddis so deserves the Climb Higher Recognition. –Regina McGraw, Center for Student Advising and Records

Emily Murphy

Dr. Emily Murphy (Families & Health Center) goes the second mile to e tend the benefits of the land-grant university into communities throughout the state, helping WVU grow in impact and stature. She is an Extension faculty member with a passion for community wellness. She travels the state to work with anyone who wants to help children, families and communities become stronger, healthier, and more resilient. She partners with organizations to plan professional conferences, promote healthy activities and address policy issues, such as the Move to Improve legislation on physical activity. An engaging teacher, Emily shares her expertise with community members of all ages and students in traditional classrooms, integrating community engagement into the teaching mission of the university. Emily is committed to helping colleagues succeed, whether it is teaching HSTA students, leading a team to submit a grant proposal, or offering a guest lecture. Emily Murphy truly is a Mountaineer that climbs higher. –Cindy Fitch, Families & Health Center

Gary Winn

Dr. Gary Winn (Industrial & Management Systems Engineering) is a student favorite. He’s always available to help students with everyday problems, from scheduling classes to finding an internship or a job. He goes out of his way to give each student every opportunity to succeed, whether they are “his” student or not. He is truly the heart of the Industrial Engineering program and a key asset to all of engineering. He makes an effort to keep in touch with those he helps and takes a sort of fatherly pride in hearing that one of “his kids” has gotten a new job or promotion. His personal touch has been a big reason such large number of engineering students have been recruited and retained to the program. –Ava Dykes, Health Sciences

July 30

Lindsey Kalivoda-Hartley

Climbing Higher is an excellent way to describe our Lindsey Kalivoda-Hartley (Extension). She has been with the 4-H Youth Development Unit for five years, and during that time she has taken our whole operation to a more productive level and had always made sure that our public face was the very best it can be. She has reached the level that when anyone needs something in our unit, they go to Lindsey because she knows the answers and makes sure that everyone seeking help is sure to get it. We are blessed with many other wonderful workers and we know that when a deadline is looming, all of our staff will be there to get the job done. Our 4-H members from across the state are learning who Lindsey is and contact her to help them with a large variety of tasks. We salute the one and only Lindsey! –Jeffrey Orndorff, Extension

Lindsey Kalivoda-Hartley, Beth Fluharty & Marsha Price

This is a nomination of a trio that work above and beyond in the 4-H Youth Development Unit. Lindsey Kalivoda-Hartley (Extension), Marsha Price (Extension), and Beth Fluharty (Extension) are called upon to support the West Virginia 4-H Program in many different ways that give the 4-H youth of West Virginia one of the premium 4-H programs in this country. Whether the location of the next event is in Jackson’s Mill, the Mountainlair, or traveling all over the state, they are there. We have much to be proud of with these three wonderful ladies and I hope they can be honored in the way they honor our efforts. –Jeffrey Orndorff, Extension

Tara St. Clair

A behind-the-scenes force that successfully runs WVU’s BrickStreet Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Tara St. Clair (College of Business and Economics) is truly an impressive individual. Time after time, Tara steps up to the plate even when it would be easier or more convenient not to do so. She strives to bring the highest level of quality to all that she does, and her enthusiasm is contagious. She gives back to the WVU community in ways beyond her job duties, both as a Wellness Coordinator for the College of B&E and as a member of the WVU Council for Women’s Concerns. She does all this while also excelling in her master’s program, and always makes the time to help a friend in need. Her extraordinary work ethic, caring heart and zest for life make Tara a huge asset to the WVU community and an inspiration to all. –Rachel Nieman, College of Business and Economics

July 23

Toni Christian

The staff of Benefits Administration, along with her colleagues, upper level leadership, and numerous other University employees and non-employees would acknowledge that Toni Christian (Human Resources) is more than worthy for this Climb Higher recognition. As Director of Benefits Administration in the Division of Human Resources, Toni is a dedicated employee, both professionally and personally. She is constantly striving to advance Benefits Administration and the impact it has on the University’s employees and students. Toni has proven that she has the ability, motivation and drive to enhance Benefits Administration. Some examples of her recent endeavors include offering employee voluntary benefits and managing the new Student Insurance Office. She is constantly facing all goals, big or small, head on with a positive mindset and energetic attitude. Toni is nothing less than supportive and encouraging of her staff. She has worked tirelessly for HR, and WVU has benefited both internally and externally from Toni’s dedication.  –Neeley Clelland, Human Resources

Kimberly Mosby

Dr. Kimberly Mosby (Student Life) serves as the Senior Associate Dean in the Office of Student Life where she manages significant aspects of the Student Life program and serves as an advocate for student rights and responsibilities. She is noted for her professional attitude, collaborative spirit and her sense of humor. Kim has served on a number of key WVU initiatives that include the Blueprint for Success and Safe Zone training, and she has enthusiastically contributed to many outreach activities that have strengthened the relationship between the University and the community. Dr. Mosby defines the ideal “go-to” person when there are questions about student life policies or if we need to identify special assistance for a student encountering unique challenges at WVU. In short, she works tirelessly for student success while enriching the work and educational environment for everyone who has an association with her.  –William Winsor, College of Creative Arts

Todd Witter

The Division of Finance would like to recognize Todd Witter (ITS)for his tremendous help in making the transition to the financial modules of the new statewide financial system, wvOASIS. Central Finance units have been working closely with ITS to establish an interface between MAP/Oracle and wvOASIS, so that daily payment processing and other business functions could go on smoothly. Todd has been instrumental in developing the interface and facilitating the flow of information between business functions internally and with external stakeholders. We appreciate his technical expertise, willingness to understand business processes and explain technical matters in easy-to-understand terms, patient fortitude, perseverance in face of ever-changing requirements from the State, creativity and open and timely communication. Thank you, Todd, for being such an excellent partner. We firmly believe that with your outstanding support we will be able to successfully implement the HR/payroll modules of wvOASIS.  –Anjali Halabe, Division of Finance

July 16

Mary Ann Adams-Michenko

Mary Ann Adams-Michenko (School of Medicine) is always a very positive person. My department has a great deal of interaction with the HSC Business Office. Mary Ann is an exceptional resource. With her extensive experience here at WVU and especially in the School of Medicine, she is always able to provide me with sound guidance on how to navigate complicated processes related to hiring new faculty, managing payroll issues and meeting very tight deadlines. Mary Ann always meets my many high-maintenance requests with a great attitude and a desire to help. She makes the HSC a better place to work! –Jerry Kerwin, School of Medicine

Steve Adams

Steve Adams (Facilities Management) goes above and beyond in every aspect of his job. He is always willing to offer assistance to anyone in need. His historical knowledge of our University and its systems is invaluable. He always has a positive attitude and a smile on his face and strives to make other people feel the same. Steve is a huge asset to WVU and I always enjoy working on projects with him. –Natalie Caravasos, Environmental Health & Safety

Regina Carroll

Regina Carroll’s (Department of Psychology) research is an innovative blend of state-of-the-art science and high-quality service provision. She investigates new ways to teach skills to children with autism spectrum disorders and related disabilities. Through her research, teaching, and community outreach, she works to improve the lives of young children with disabilities and their families. –Claire St. Peter, Department of Psychology

Laurie Theeke

Laurie Theeke (Health Sciences) climbs higher through her mentorship efforts. She wants to see WVU and the School of Nursing expand their impact. She is a nationally recognized scholar and shares her expertise in scholarship with junior faculty and students to help elevate their work. She leads a Scholarship Interest Group in the SON. Dr. Theeke can often be found encouraging students to improve their writing, submit for publication or presentation, or consider returning for a higher level of education. She has an open-door policy and will help colleagues or students anytime they ask. She offers words of encouragement and validation, which help increase motivation during periods of frustration. Dr. Theeke is proud of the University, committed to the School of Nursing, and consistently drives toward excellence in her work. She demonstrates her passion for including anyone who wants to work on a project. Dr. Theeke puts the Mountaineer spirit into action. –Emily Barnes, Health Sciences

Lisa Verlinden

Lisa Verlinden (Honors College) is in the process of starting a new program here at WVU. It is a life-learning program for students with intellectual disabilities. Students will learn independent living skills and employment skills so that they can seek and hold employment, and social skills with the purpose of becoming self-sufficient adults. This program will help further their education that is offered through public education. This is exactly the type of program the University and the state of West Virginia needs. –Vickie Sigley, Honors College

July 2

Katie Utterback Gallagher

Katie Utterback Gallagher (Graduate Education) is a perfect example of a team player. She focuses on the big picture for WVU and our students. She is a strong advocate for students and treats each one with love and respect. They know once they’ve worked with her they will always have someone in their corner. Katie is also a wonderful colleague with whom to work. Her work is of the highest quality, and she takes pride in a job well-done. If Katie is on the project, you know it will be done well and on time, because she is dependable beyond question and will never let you down. Katie will always step up to help others when needed because she sees us as ONE West Virginia University. She is honest and trustworthy and lives her life with integrity both professionally and personally. Katie is a true Mountaineer who serves WVU and the state with pride. –Barbara Copenhaver Bailey, Student Affairs

Kim Harrison

Kim Harrison (Student Organization Services) always seems to go above expectations in helping students achieve their passions through student organizations. Whether it is helping guide an anxious group of new student leaders start a club or doing something as small as helping give feedback on an organization’s poster, students can always count on her for friendly assistance. Kim is someone who students are always quick to praise in conversation, yet as humble as she is, I do not believe she knows just how much of a positive impact she truly has on shaping students’ lives at WVU through mentorship and support outside of the traditional classroom. –Ryan Campione, former SGA, recent graduate

Cathy Orndorff

I nominate Cathy Orndorff (University Relations) for the award because she is an exceptional leader and works tireless for the advancement of the University. Her love for this institution allows her to isolate critical issues and focus on appropriate solution. She exceeds in customer service. Despite her busy schedule, Cathy will give her undivided attention to anyone looking for help whether it is a student, parent, faculty or staff. But what really sets her apart is her humanity. Her door and heart are always open and she will be the first to offer a helping hand. Her compassion and kindness are legendary and she inspires those around her to become a better person. –Eleonore Jones, University Relations

Todd Witter

During the creation of an electronic file that our office is required to submit to the state each year, we ran across some serious unforeseen technical issues that brought the process to a halt. Although Todd Witter (Administration and Finance) was very busy with some other critical issues, he stepped in and worked personally with one of my staff to research the cause of the problem, determine an appropriate course of action, and then put the appropriate changes into place. The submitted file is a critical submission required by the state. Our inability to submit it in a timely fashion could adversely affect our ability to generate a payroll in the new year. –David Watkins, Planning & Treasury Operations

June 25, 2014

Robin Anderson

Robin Anderson (Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources) is fully dedicated to improving the student experience for Freshmen engineers. Each day she stops to speak with students in the Engineering Learning Center about their studies, experiences, and/or troubles. Robin is always positive and works tirelessly to bring exciting energy to the workplace. Her personality shines through to the students making the Engineering Learning Center a comfortable atmosphere for students. Not only does she go above and beyond for students, but she does the same for her coworkers. She never says, “That’s not my job” but instead asks how she can help with a smile. She truly cares about her career and the lives she is affecting. –Michelle Poland, Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources

Amanda Burnett

Amanda Burnett (University Relations) has been the glue to hold University Relations-Web and University Relations-Design together for the past three years as the administrative assistant for our units. She is organized, thorough, thoughtful, and forthright. We are going to miss her as she is moving to Charleston, SC with her husband Professor Wesley Burnett and Zoe, her daughter, as Dr. Burnett takes a position with the College of Charleston. Amanda is a breath of fresh air with her enthusiasm and zest for life. Her work ethic and attention to detail have made many projects and efforts in University Relations for the better. Her positive communication often helped students through trying situations. I am forever grateful to Amanda for climbing higher for the past three years in University Relations. –Cathy Orndorff, University Relations

Jeremiah Kibler

Jeremiah Kibler (Housing and Residential Education – Honors Hall) selflessly gives of his time every night as he hosts events for the Honors Hall. He creates an atmosphere that allows students to thrive. He will even sing you a song for Valentine’s Day if you’re lucky! Jeremiah really does go above and beyond for every Honors student. He has climbed higher which allows each student in the hall to climb higher as well. –Zacary Tardiff, Housing and Residential Education – Brooke Tower

Pam Lyons

Pam Lyons (WVU Alumni Association) is a 30-year veteran of the WVUAA. When you walk into the lobby, Pam is the first person you see and is always there to welcome our guests with her friendly and sincere demeanor. Because Pam is so down-to-earth, people tend to gravitate toward her and feel an instant connection – that “at home” feeling. What we love most about Pam is that she always asks, “What can I do to help?” When visitors are in our facility, she will direct them, grab them a cup of coffee etc., often without ever being asked to do so. Pam is our “go to” person for our Graduate Emeritus Reunion greeting our 50-plus year graduates and making them feel at home. And that is what the WVU Alumni Association is all about. –Tara Curtis, WVU Alumni Association

Sherry Stoneking

Sherry Stoneking (Public Relations manager at the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center) is the epitome of a team player. Not only is she a talented writer and public relations professional constantly working on new ways to get the Cancer Center’s message out, but she is also always willing to go the extra mile to help her coworkers with a project or a job. She has assisted me with countless fundraising events and projects, always with a smile on her face and willingness to do what is needed. Sherry was instrumental in making sure our Gala celebration in April went smoothly and our attendees had a good time. Whenever I have an idea for a project, I always run it by Sherry first. She always gives constructive feedback and is willing to roll up her sleeves to put in the work necessary to help bring ideas to life. –Dannell Boatman, Health Sciences Center

June 18, 2014

Colleen Harshbarger

When I’ve stopped to think about individuals that I admire in the WVU community, Colleen Harshbarger (Office of Wellness & Health Promotion) always comes to mind. I have said to many people, “Colleen runs a tight ship, and she and her crew do such amazing work.” Colleen gets a lot of things done. She and her professional staff, and numerous student staff, work incredibly hard to create and implement health and wellness campaigns that are far reaching across campus. Some of the most concerning issues that face college students today are being directly addressed in a very relevant and useful way. My experience in working with Colleen is that she is the complete antithesis of mediocre. From the small details, to the big picture, Colleen goes above and beyond. “Climbing Higher” is a way of being for Colleen.  –Marcedes Minana (Adventure WV)

Brock Lindsey

A boisterous laugh and light-hearted demeanor are the first things you notice when you meet Brock Lindsey (Health Sciences). Behind the personality is a brain that just won’t quit. Dr. Lindsey, a joint surgeon and oncologist in the Department of Orthopaedics, works nonstop toward providing better care for patients and to find cures for cancer and infection. He makes patients laugh and students bend their minds to uncover new ways to study medicine. It’s not necessarily one act that makes him worthy of the Climb Higher nomination, but the continual “climb” he makes with achievements in service to the people of West Virginia and for research and dedication to teaching. He’s received awards for his commitment to his patients; he relentlessly works to improve medicine through research; and has a natural drive to bring those around him along “for the climb.” He pursues his job like a true Mountaineer.  –Sherri Leyden (Health Sciences)

Adele Siba

Adele Siba (Office of Admissions) is always professional and a true mentor. She is willing to sit down and really work with students or staff with any problem that may arise.  –Dianne Stewart (Office of Admissions)

Jamie Simmons

Jamie Simmons (Information Technology Services) is reliable without question, always displays a calm and professional demeanor when interacting with customers and coworkers within the departments, and never complains about the work he is given. On many occasions he has followed up with new users or users with account problems to ensure their accounts are working as they should.

 Furthermore, Jamie continues to accept new assignments with eagerness and a willingness to learn. He requires little supervision and has a good eye for detail, and often provides ideas to improve current processes and procedures, which has been a great help to the operations unit. He continually sets a high standard of work quality, quantity, attitude and ethics.  –Dave Lunsford (Information Technology Services)

Matthew Visyak

Matthew Visyak (School of Medicine) embodies the mantra of “Climb Higher.” I’ve worked with Matthew just a short time but am continually impressed by his positive attitude, strong work ethic and fierce loyalty to not only the School of Medicine, but to WVU. He tells me that he likes making mistakes because he uses them as experiences to learn and improve. We recently completed a full overhaul of the School of Medicine website, with Matthew doing the bulk of the initial research and design work. He maintained a positive outlook, was receptive to all edits but also defended his decisions on particular elements or content in a diplomatic and informed manner. He has reminded me of what it means to be a Mountaineer, whether by education or employment. Matthew climbs higher every day in the name of WVU, and we appreciate his dedication and effort.  –Tara Scatterday (School of Medicine)

June 11, 2014

Daisy Bailey

As my supervisor, Daisy Bailey (WVU Extension Service) has worked with me to achieve great things as a Nutrition Outreach Instructor. She encourages me to reach farther and strive harder to get the message about healthy living out to the youth and adults I work with. She treats me with respect.
 As an Agricultural Agent, Daisy puts in many hours to visit farms and work with youth in livestock programs. She helps with fundraising activities, works with farmers markets to ensure their success and answers hundreds of calls each week concerning gardening, planting, farming, insects, innovations in gardening and growing, soil sampling and livestock.
 What makes Daisy stand out is that she does everything with integrity. Her knowledge and enthusiasm for her work and her representation of WVU Extension and WVU is heard in her voice and seen in her actions. She is a great human asset to WVU. –Nancy Bremar (WVU Extension Service)

Christine Davis

Christine Davis (Digital Document and Copier Services) is a true Mountaineer and dedicated member of the WVU Staff. She works tirelessly to make sure her customer’s projects are completed on time and with the highest quality. Christine has logged countless hours to meet critical deadlines. Christine’s exceptional customer service, attention to detail and willingness to “go the extra mile” are the kind of qualities that enable her and ultimately her customers to “Climb Higher.” –Kevin Hart (University Relations)

Bernadette Jungblut

Bernadette Jungblut (Assessment and Retention) serves as the director of assessment and retention. Although much of what she accomplishes often goes unseen, these areas remain among the most significant challenges facing higher education. Her direction therein has been exemplary, and I believe her contributions have helped to significantly advance and enrich the institution. Bernadette also served as one of the leaders for WVU’s Higher Learning Commission’s reaccreditation self-study and visit. I had the opportunity to witness her organization, guidance and tireless perseverance in ensuring that the self-study, while honest and thorough, still presented the University in the best possible way. 

She has also been intrinsic in creating retention initiatives such as the first-year academy and other programs for the success of our “at-risk” students. Her ability to interpret data has impressed me as brilliant, and she has shown how statistical information is truly applicable to the future of the institution. 

–William Winsor (College of Creative Arts)

Erica Lindsay

Erica Lindsay (College of Business & Economics) is a graphic and print designer who goes above and beyond the call of duty on a regular basis. She takes written content and images and turns them into works of art that touch many audiences including alumni, students, faculty, staff and administration. She also occasionally teaches undergraduate courses in design at P.I. Reed and the CAC. She is organized, strategic, hardworking, knowledgeable and dependable – in addition to being an all-around cool gal. She is a great role model for anybody, but particularly young female employees at WVU, and I am a better person for having worked with her! –Rachel Nieman (College of Business & Economics)

Bob Roberts

Police Chief Bob Roberts (University Police) recently helped organize and lead a crisis communication tabletop exercise that brought communicators, representatives from the senior leadership team, facilities, information technology, student affairs, area first responders and others together to simulate a high-level crisis. We all learned what we were doing well—and also what we could do better to not only respond to the emergency for the safety and well-being of those impacted, but to communicate factually and sincerely about the tragedy. WVU’s Police Chief and his team are indeed representative of what it means to “climb higher.” –Becky Lofstead (University Relations)

June 4, 2014

Rick Bebout

I cannot imagine the online IMC graduate program at the School of Journalism without the dedication of Rick Bebout (School of Journalism). As the IT Director, Rick guides the faculty and students through the maze of online instruction with grace and professionalism. He consistently reaches well beyond the customary bounds of IT to assure the success of the program and its constituents. I’ve immensely enjoyed my five years instructing at WVU. In no small measure, it’s because I know that Rick has my back and the excellence of the University in his soul. –Dennis O’Connell (School of Journalism)

Brandy Toothman

Brandy Toothman (School of Nursing) has been with the school for over 10 years. Within that time she has developed into a professional and caring resource for students, colleagues, and administrators. Whatever the question may be, Brandy knows how to find the answer, or at least the right person with the answer. Brandy is committed to the Nursing students and her job, and she has always taken on new duties and challenges with energy and passion. Brandy is truly an asset to the School of Nursing and WVU. –Christina Kilduff (School of Nursing)

Tara George-Jones

Tara George-Jones (International Programs) is always creating opportunities for students and faculty. She maintains a 24-hour support/emergency cell phone for our international travelers, and never fails to respond when called.

 She works in the area of strategic planning and policy creation, as well as taking time to work on paperwork processing and student advising. 

There are not many in this university who wear the number of hats she does, and fewer who do it well. –Tony Goddard (International Programs)

Tara Robbins

I am relatively new to my position as Director of Undergraduate Advising in the History Department, and without Tara Robbins’ (Eberly College Office of Undergraduate Studies) help, I wouldn’t be able to do my job. She has been patient, informative, and thorough – encyclopedic, in fact. She is always available to help with technical issues, advising conundrums and guidance for navigating the university. She is a resourceful and creative problem-solver who keeps the best interests of students at heart while protecting the brand and integrity of WVU. The work load she handles inspires me to make sure I do a thorough job myself; not only because it’s the right thing to do but because I don’t want to add to her work load! I wish the university had five more people just like her. –Charles MacKay (Eberly College Department of History)

Michelle Rodney

As the Assistant Director of Operations, Michelle Rodney (Information Technology Services) always goes out of her way to make solid improvements on everything she works on. She challenges her employees (myself being one of them) to think outside the box and ALWAYS encourages self-improvement. She expects results from her employees and has been a very efficient supervisor. She is always on the side lines cheering her employees on when they perform well and is not afraid to get her hands onto any issue, providing a very impressive skillset to any effort. Michelle makes the university a better place to work and ITS a better place for customers, internal and external, to work with. –Barry Wilt (Information Technology Services)

Stephanie Toothman

Stephanie Toothman (Facilities Management) volunteered on the Council for Women’s Concerns and as a worksite wellness coordinator through Employee Wellness. She wanted to give back to WVU through a few of her other passions. She got to combine the work of these two committees through a recent workshop that was offered entitled, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting… at WVU.” I had been thinking about starting a family myself, and sifting through all of the information on insurance, FMLA, daycare options, etc. was overwhelming. I suggested a workshop and Stephanie ran with it. The workshop was very informative and well-attended. Stephanie is a go-getter. She turns ideas into realities. What’s better than that in the workplace and in life? –Traci Knabenshue (Facilities Management)

May 28, 2014

Steve Cutright
In June 2012, Steve Cutright (College of Business & Economics) became the director of the BrickStreet Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and professor in the Management and Entrepreneurship departments. He oversees the Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition, Statewide High School Business Plan Competition, & the WVU App Challenge. He also implemented the Experiential Learning Center which engages in Faculty Led/Student-based teams performing business services to local and state government agencies, as well as private industry. Finally, he’s engaged with the University Outreach personnel in a collaborative effort between B&E, The Launch Pad, and WVU Outreach staff to progress the Outreach Mission of the college & University. Steve’s efforts have expanded the center and impacted many students from across the state. –Tara St Clair (Student) 

Renee Conneway
Renee Conneway (Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design) has done outstanding work as a traveling recruiter for the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design. As a graduate of the college, she understands our culture and is able to communicate that to prospective students. She's been incredibly engaged and present to prospective students and their families at so many recruitment events, leading central recruitment offices at WVU to note how involved and personal our efforts are. –David Welsh (Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design) 

Darlene Johnson
Darlene Johnson (WVU College Radio Station) is one of the most selfless employees at West Virginia University. She has gone far above and beyond her job duties to assure the students at the campus radio station have the best experience possible. She wears many hats - counselor, mother figure, advisor and confidante. She is an excellent listener, and as we know sometimes that is all a student needs. Darlene is most definitely the glue that holds the station together and without her support I know the operation would not run nearly as smoothly. –Kim Harrison (WVU College Radio Station)

Karen Fitzpatrick
Dr. Karen Fitzpatrick (Family Medicine) has worked tirelessly as an advocate for students and patients at the Health Sciences Center as a faculty member in the Department of Family Medicine. She furthered her own education by becoming a nationally-recognized expert in Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) care to benefit patients in northern WV, as well as students and residents who will learn about the team approach to care. She also started a new PCMH fellowship to train tomorrow's leaders in team-based clinical care. Her tireless advocacy has made her a requested speaker all around the state, on webinars, and for local/regional conferences. She always takes the time to point out new ways we can improve care, teaching, and performance. In large ways and in small, she exhibits the Climb higher Mountaineer spirit. –Dana King (Family Medicine)  

Julie Turner
Julie Turner’s (School of Nursing) first priority is always her students. She truly cares about her work and the impact that it has on her students. Julie does more than just advise her students on program progression or academic questions. She tries to make sure that the Nursing students are successful by providing support and encouragement, and even a bit of hard love from time to time on how to meet the challenges of being a health care professional. Julie is truly an asset to the School of Nursing. - Christina Kilduff (School of Nursing)  

Elizabeth Oppe
Elizabeth Oppe (School of Journalism) took this community by storm when she began teaching PR 324, Writing & Applications with the JSchool three years ago. She has made it a priority to implement service-learning, and has worked very hard to develop a sustainable model that provides quality learning out of the classroom. Elizabeth's dedication to building a stronger bond between WVU and the community include her willingness to meet with community partners BEFORE the semester even begins; participate in service herself; and lead students to become engaged. She even coordinated online service-learning last summer working with the local and other United Ways across the region. Elizabeth was awarded the 2013 Excellence in Civic Engagement Faculty Award by the WVU Center for Service and Learning, and her students have provided hundreds of service hours and various PR products for the community. –Alexis McMillen (Center for Service and Learning)