Emory Report

March 30, 1998

 Volume 50, No. 26

Emory honors eight of its finest employees for distinction

The 14th annual Awards of Distinction were given out at a small banquet Tuesday, March 24, at the Emory Conference Center. And while the jobs and constituencies of the eight honorees vary, all share a dedication to Emory and a commitment to excellence that goes above and beyond the job descriptions they hold. Each recipient received a $500 saving bond and an award plaque from President Bill Chace.

Rick Allen
Sergeant, Emory Police Department
Employed by the EPD since 1980, Rick Allen currently works in the Crime Prevention and Community Relations Unit. He was instrumental in establishing a broadcast fax system to inform the Emory community about varied criminal activity-from a spate of armed robberies near campus to bogus mail order supply companies. He also coordinates alarm systems, card access systems and physical crime prevention programs. Twice voted "Officer of the Year" by his co-workers, Allen's nomination letter by Police Chief Craig Watson noted, "Sgt. Allen's efforts have led to successful results that have touched every member of the Emory Community. [His] work has been invaluable as we strive to reach our goal of making Emory a safer place to live, study and work."

Susan Carini
Associate Director,
University Publications

Susan Carini recently completed an 18-month stint as acting director of University Publications. "She performed all job duties as acting director with consistent excellence," Assistant Vice President for University Communications Jan Gleason wrote in her nomination letter. Carini began her career at Emory in 1992 as a Publications editor. Colleagues cited her quick wit, excellent writing and editing skills, extreme dedication and hard work as qualities that propelled her to her current position. Carini's "voice" is probably one of the most widely read in the University. She's edited or written hundreds of publications, from donor reports and recruitment materials to regional alumni program newsletters and the Women's Center newsletter.

Anne Kirk
Office Manager, Biology Department
During her 15-year Emory career, Anne Kirk has developed a sterling reputation for coming up with ideas that improve the efficiency of her department. She has also received the admiration of the students with whom she interacts on a daily basis, often serving as their ad hoc counselor. Sigma Nu fraternity honored her with their annual "Most Outstanding Staff Member" award. Paul Leonard, director of the Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology program, wrote, "When I had to generate a job description for a support person for the new Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology Program, the position was modeled to try and match the special personal qualities of Anne Kirk." For many months Kirk pinch-hit in that position, in addition to her regular job duties, until a permanent staff member was hired.

Brit Katz
Director, Residence Life
Brit Katz has had a tremendous impact on the lives of students since coming to Emory in January 1993. Judy Raggi-Moore, director of the Italian Studies program, said of him: "I have never seen anyone be so available for each individual concern presented to him while maintaining excellence of performance in a job load that well exceeds what any one person can successfully accomplish." In addition to his job duties, Katz gives numerous speeches to campus organizations and generally makes time to reach out to students with energy, enthusiasm and warmth, said one of his colleagues. The list of committees, student initiatives, honor banquets and seminars he has organized or participated in is numerous, said another. "Brit teaches even the hardest lessons with such love, yet effectiveness, that the students never feel anything but pride and enthusiasm when carrying out his suggestions," Raggi-Moore added.

JoAnn McKenzie
Information Analyst, Provost's Office
JoAnn McKenzie has been described as a "catalytic leader," a quality that has served her well as current chair of the President's Commission on the Status of Women and in her job in Institutional Planning and Research. Since beginning her career at Emory in 1990, she has advanced rapidly into positions of greater responsibility. Colleagues say her dedication and job excellence are complemented by a caring attitude, creative problem-solving skills and an energetic efficiency. "JoAnn is able to bring to her work at Emory a consideration for others that is unparalleled," Interim Provost Rebecca Chopp said. "JoAnn has been a tireless leader of the Commission on the Status of Women," said Martha Talbott of Information Technology, "always finding ways to motivate the group to keep striving to reach their goals even when frustration is high or demands on people's time pulls them in other directions."

Rickey Ray
Supervisor of Preventive Maintenance, Facilities Management
Rickey Ray has been a Facilities Management employee for 21 years. He is known as an employee who will not accept the status quo but actively seeks ways to solve problems and enhance FMD services. Most recently he championed efforts to move Preventive Maintenance operations to the second shift, a change that has proved less disruptive to building occupants and reduces overtime for FMD staff. The recipient of numerous letters of appreciation from faculty and staff, Ray was chosen an FMD employee of the quarter in 1996. "There is no one more dedicated to doing the job right than Rickey Ray," wrote FMD Associate Vice President Bob Hascall in his nomination letter. "His current position requires that he work behind the scenes to handle many of the most difficult and thankless jobs on campus. He has always been more than equal to the task."

Janice Russ
Lead Custodian, Facilities Management
Janice Russ joined Emory in 1984 as an entry-level custodial worker. A series of promotions led to her current position in 1992, and she has served several times as a temporary supervisor of FMD staff. Yerkes Associate Director for Administration John Magnotta said her crew's efforts after a recent fire were extraordinary. "No special instructions were necessary on our part; she just came in-outside of regular hours-and got the job done." Another employee said Russ "is the cornerstone for good employee relations" and described her as "cheerful, attentive and friendly-all the things the rest of us should be." Russ was the first FMD employee of the quarter in June 1994. "Her personal qualities have motivated her workers to enhance the overall effectiveness of custodial services provided to the University," Hascall noted.

Kim Turner
Associate Director of Finance and Administration, Goizueta School
Kim Turner has been no stranger to long hours and added duties in her 10 years at the business school, both of which she accepts in stride, say her colleagues. Turner is respected for being an effective ambassador for the school and for the honesty, assertiveness and fairness with which she performs her duties. She was instrumental in the business school's smooth transition to its new building, developing a precise schedule, serving as a liaison with staff and movers, and closing down the school's satellite office in the Lenox Building, among other duties. "After the move I received numerous compliments from faculty and staff alike regarding how well the move was planned and executed," said Dean Ron Frank. "Needless to say, without Kim's extraordinary efforts, the experience could have been dramatically different."

-compiled by Stacey Jones

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