2016 Woodin CYtation Award Recipient

Kevin Kane, director II, Institute for Design Research & Outreach

Austin, Jackie, and Dan Woodin (in framed photo), with Woodin Award recipient Kevin Kane.

Kevin Kane, Director II of Design Administration, was nominated by Brenda Behling. Kevin’s work has had a lasting impact on P&S staff at Iowa State. Kevin served as president of the Professional and Scientific Council for two terms, served on the Council for nine years, was P&S representative on the University Budget and Planning Committee, chaired a task force on a steering committee for the ISU Strategic Plan, developed P&S staff general satisfaction surveys, has been a member on university-wide search committees, served on the P&S Appeal Committee, and a member of the P&S Review Committee. 

Kevin conducted extensive research on the role of non-faculty academic professional staff in higher education and has helped to influence the ISU administration regarding appointments and compensation for P&S staff whose role is similar to faculty. Kevin is willing to help with any project – both large and small – and is well respected by those who work with him.  Please join me in congratulating Kevin on his Professional and Scientific Woodin Cytation award.

2016 Outstanding New Professional and Scientific Council Member CYtation Award Recipient

Nick Van Berkum, communications specialist III, Sociology-LAS

Nick Van Berkum, Communications Specialist III, Sociology – CALS, was nominated by Tera Lawson and Ben Green. As a new Councilor and member of the Communications Committee, Nick, updated the Council’s newsletter template and style guides. He coordinated with the Executive and Communications Committees to get the Professional and Scientific Council Newsletter out consistently each month. Additionally, he would brainstorm ideas for content and write many of the newsletter items. 

While on the Communications Committee, Nick also volunteered to serve as the Council Representative on the University Committee on Women, in which he worked closely with the Council’s Peer Advocacy committee to contribute to the Iowa State University Lactation Spaces and Policies Proposal, which accompanied motion FY16.9 and was approved by Council on May 5, 2016.

This collaboration has led Nick to now chair the Peer Advocacy Committee where he is working to implement the remaining components of Council Motion FY16.9, in addition to working on several other initiatives. His leadership of the Peer Advocacy Committee and work as a member of the Executive Committee has highlighted the strong interpersonal relationships he has formed with fellow Council Members. He is a willing collaborator and a valuable resource for Council. Nick exhibits GREAT potential for future contributions to not only the Professional and Scientific Council, but to Iowa State University.  He is a thoughtful, willing collaborator, someone who is willing to take initiative and assist wherever needed, and all around a wonderful representative of what it means to be an OUTSTANDING New Councilor.

2016 CYtation Award Recipients

Paula Burns, human services spec. II, Human Development & Family Studies

Paula Burns, human services specialist II, Human Development & Family Studies, was nominated by Kate Goudy-Haht. Paula is a technical writer and trainer within the Child Welfare Research and Training Project. She provides project management and training through a contract ISU has with the Department of Human Services (DHS). The service she provides to DHS field staff embodies the ISU mission of sharing knowledge beyond the campus borders. She has also been able to showcase her creative side by producing training content using cutting edge software to educate field staff in a professional, yet fun way. Recently, Paula took the lead role on a project that included organizing networking opportunities with other people who provide similar training and technical writing. This included reaching out to all 50 states, U.S. territories, and tribal nations. Her leadership has helped solidify important collaborations that will ultimately lead to higher quality training for state workers. Paula also recently shared her writing skills while volunteering her time as a member of the Professional and Scientific Council Professional Development Conference Subcommittee.

Karla Embleton, program coordinator II, Human Sciences Administration

Karla Embleton, Program Coordinator II in Human Sciences Administration, was nominated by Ann Bugler. Karla is an Instructional Designer and supports faculty and students with Blackboard Learn, Qualtrics, and other related software for the College of Human Sciences Online and Distance Learning unit.  She provides one-on-one and group training and consulting for the design and delivery of courses and puts in long hours to assist those who need her, making time for everyone, while keeping a positive attitude and smile on her face.  Karla is sought after to sit on committees that promote improvement of campus online learning and is often the most knowledgeable person in the room when it comes to various software to support teaching and learning.  Karla is the Chair of the College of Human Sciences P&S Staff Committee and has helped plan and organize two College of Human Sciences events, including a P&S event and a booth at the CHS Food & Fun Fair.  Her benevolent spirit shows through her work with LeBaron Hall’s holiday “Giving Tree,” her volunteerism at the Ames Public Library, donating blood, and contributing items to the United Way Campaign. 

Val Evans, administrative specialist III, Human Development & Family Studies

Valerie Evans, Administrative Specialist III, Human Development and Family Studies, was nominated by Dr. Carl Weems. Valerie’s department relies on her for administrative leadership, creative thinking, and innovative problem solving skills.  She has achieved excellence in her field as facilitator for Total Quality Management, serving on P&S Council from 2007-2010, and has been a member of the College of Human Sciences P&S Council from 2014 to present.  She treats everyone with respect and compassion and has an upbeat personality while promoting excellent customer services to faculty, staff, and students.  She is an exceptional manager of her department’s budget and course offerings and makes demanding tasks manageable and enjoyable to others.  Valerie goes beyond her required HR duties by creating timelines for department committees and communicating these timelines to facilitate processes and improve efficiency for others, sometimes while increasing her own workload in the process.  She also promotes professional development for staff and demonstrates commitment to working with employees to advance their careers. 

Darrin Fischer, systems analyst senior, IT Services Systems & Operations

Darrin Fischer, Senior Systems Analyst in the department of IT Services Systems and Operations was nominated by Dianne Brotherson. Darrin is the team lead for the Endpoint Services team.  In July, Darrin accepted the interim role of Solution Center Customer Success Manager.  At that time, the Solution Center had just moved to a new location and Darrin helped smooth the transition and led the staff in new efforts toward using Scrum and Agile methodologies.  Darrin brought his “can-do” attitude to the role creating a positive and productive work environment.  A key to success included partnering with campus IT professionals to better meet the needs of the university community to provide the correct answers in a timely fashion.  With Darrin’s leadership, the Solution Center was prepared for the start of the fall semester.  They resolved over 6,300 requests for assistance during the week before classes and the first week of fall classes, making a big difference to ISU.

Paul Kassel, field specialist IV, Extension to Agriculture-Extension

Paul Kassel, Field Specialist IV, Extension to Agriculture-Extension, was nominated by Erin Hodgson, Virgil Schmitt and Joel DeJong. Paul serves many roles on the Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Crops Team, including leadership, facilitation and mentorship. The ANR Crops Team is a working group of about 30 faculty and staff. State Specialists on campus and Field Specialists around the state focus on providing research-based agricultural education to Iowans. Within our Plan of Work, there are three focused Topic Issues and Paul co-coordinates one of them: Crop Production and Profitability. He regularly facilitates team in-service discussions so the team can better understand emerging agricultural issues affecting our stakeholders (e.g., farmers, ag business, etc.).

In addition, Paul serves on the Program Delivery Subcommittee Committee. In 2016, Paul took the lead in developing a statewide curriculum called, “Nitrogen Management Week.” He is organizing a multi-location meeting series for the summer of 2017, which includes lectures, small group discussions, hands-on demonstrations and supplemental materials. In addition to his leadership and facilitation skills, perhaps one of Paul’s greatest strengths is his interest and ability to mentor new staff. Recently, ISUEO hired three field agronomists and he is enthusiastically mentoring all of them in an informal capacity. Because of his efforts, the next generation of agronomists will be in a good position for success.

Kris Koerner, program coordinator II, Facilities, Planning & Management

Kris Koerner, FAMIS Manager in Facilities Planning and Management, was nominated by Jody Danielson. Kris provides leadership and direction for the effective use of FAMIS, including training for internal and external users.  Kris served on the P&S Council from 2013-2016 and was chair of the council’s Policies and Procedures committee.  She is now serving as a representative of the University Services division on the Policy Library Advisory Committee.  Kris takes advantage of every opportunity to enhance and expand her awareness and expertise, share with others whenever possible, and has successfully made a difference to many throughout the campus community.  Please join me in congratulating Kris on her Professional and Scientific CYtation award.

Robin McNeely, program manager I, Institute for Design Research & Outreach

Robin McNeely, Program Manager I for College of Design, was nominated by Meredith Foley. Robin is often the first contact clients have with the GIS facility.  She does a great job listening and understanding the needs of each client and project and assessing how best to serve them.  She also has served her fellow employees as a leader on the P&S Council for multiple terms where she served as an officer and was chair of multiple committees.  Robin volunteers her time to assist with College of Design Events and also with programs to enhance the experience of women in science and engineering. For all these reasons; professionalism, leadership, service, and volunteerism, we nominate Robin McNeely for the CYtation and Woodin Awards.

Dawn Miller, academic adviser III, Agronomy

Dawn Miller, academic adviser III in the agronomy department, was nominated by Ken Moore. Dawn is the student services coordinator for the Masters of Science in Agronomy distance education program. The agronomy MS program is a distance education program serving working professionals. It is a program with more than 200 active students participating at any given time. Dawn is the face of the program and is the one that students contact if they experience problems or difficulties in their program and often in their personal life. She laughs with them, she cries with them, and is the one that gives them the moral support to keep going in the program when they feel like giving up. A consistent message from students is that she is the person who made the difference for them. Dawn also provides significant support for faculty teaching in the program. Dawn plans for the week-long summer practicum, which is the only course in the entire 40-credit curriculum that students come to campus to complete. As if this weren’t enough, later in that same week she coordinates an optional orientation for the new students in the program. Dawn goes the extra mile in serving students and making their experience at Iowa State a good one!

Brent Pringnitz, program coordinator III, Extension to Agriculture-Extension

Brent Pringnitz, program coordinator III with the extension to Agriculture-extension department, was nominated by Melissa Miller. Brent manages logistics, registration and finances for the Iowa Water Conference. The annual event celebrated its 10th conference at the Scheman building and attracted 400 water professionals from across the state. The 2016 conference had numerous additions that were managed by Brent. These included inviting 60 high school students whom enjoyed a separate lunch. Addition of an evening reception. Promotional accommodations for the “Art of Water,” which included a gallery viewing and multimedia dance performance in Stephens auditorium. Brent also set up three webinar presentations when a snow storm hit the Twin Cities and Northwest IA stranding speakers that were scheduled for the event. Simply put, the success of the 2016 Iowa Water Conference would not be possible without Brent’s reliability, flexibility, and problem solving skills.

Shawna Saad, associate registrar, Records & Registration

Shawna Saad, Associate Registrar in the Office of the Registrar, was nominated by Mindy Heggen. 2016 was a very tense year for most students of color across campuses in the United States, including at Iowa State University. With the presidential race, violence against police officers, racial injustices and many other events, many students of color have felt fear and felt that they don’t belong. Because of her passion for equality and equity, Shawna created staff development opportunities that focused on diversity and inclusion in the Office of the Registrar.

During the summer of 2016, Shawna created a “book club” in which staff read “Waking Up White” by Debbie Irving. Discussing the topic of white privilege can be hard, but Shawna was able to create a safe and welcoming space for these hard discussions to happen and we ended the summer with a new understanding and why some students of color feel the way they do. Shawna went on to create a fall series where we discussed undocumented students and the lack of a pathway to citizenship that they faced. She is now offering a spring series that will hone in on ways we can make an impact on campus and ways to better support students, faculty and staff. These topics are hard to discuss, but Shawna is great about directing conversation in a positive yet truthful direction. She has always acted in what she believes is in the best interest of not only her staff but the campus as a whole. 

Julia Sager, program coordinator III, Ames Laboratory of U.S. DOE

Julia Sager, lead industrial hygienist with the Ames Lab, was nominated by Sean Whalen. Julia showed outstanding efforts helping the laboratory complete a comprehensive chemical inventory ahead of schedule and at a reduced cost. An assessment showed that the Ames lab had an incomplete, inaccurate, and outdated inventory. It was determined that a wall-to-wall inventory was needed. Julia demonstrated innovation by investigating several commercially available inventory systems that would meet the lab’s needs. She decided that the free QUARTZY management system would meet those needs, including the stringent DOE cyber security protocols. With over 200 labs and multiple custodial and maintenance spaces to be inventoried Julia suggested hiring of six undergraduate students to assist. Utilizing students to assist with the completion of the inventory provided a significant positive personal impact to P & S staff: students help saved significant time and allowed researchers to focus on their primary tasks while fulfilling the requirement of producing a safe and healthy work environment. Julia worked outside of the scope of her normal work-day to ensure the project was completed ahead of schedule, and established a chemical inventory system that ensures Ames Laboratory and ISU employees work in a safe and compliant environment today and into the future.

Kate Simmons, academic adviser III, Sociology - LAS

Kate Simmons, Academic Adviser III in the College of LAS Student Academic Services, was nominated by the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ Department of Student Academic Services.  Kate singlehandedly and tirelessly maintained the quality of advising and student services following the tragic loss of the Department of Sociology Chair and an unexpected semester-long absence of an academic adviser.  She has also served as the only available adviser in a growing department with a new established major, serving nearly 500 Criminal Justice and Sociology majors.  This has meant being available for advising consultations and managing major changes and registration advising appointments for 200 more students than typical.   During a time when she saw 50% more daily visits with potential students and families, Kate not only taught her own orientation course sections but those of her absent colleague.  Kate also maintained a high level of engagement and service to her department by serving on the curriculum committee, developing an exit survey for graduating seniors, and was specifically chosen as a staff representative to evaluate a curriculum that hadn’t been updated in over fifteen years.

Mary Ullestad-Heneke, program coordinator II, LAS Administration

Mary Ullestad-Heneke, program coordinator II, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, was nominated by Teresa Albertson, Venita Currie, and Nancy Guthrie. Mary is responsible for many duties in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Office of the Dean; however, her coordination of more than 200 general and study abroad scholarships for the College went above the call of duty. The task is enormous; last year, the College received almost 1,200 applications from students. Mary not only manages the details of this program annually, over the past two years she has revamped the entire process improving not only the college scholarship programs, but also the scholarship awards managed by the 22 departments of the College. Her work has made a notable difference for many students, families, faculty and staff across the college.

When a staff member left the College and tasks were reassigned, Mary took over the scholarship awards programs. In 2014, she audited and documented the processes the College uses to accept scholarship applications, award scholarships and steward students through the scholarship process. By 2015, she had streamlined the process and was working with the college's 22 departments to encourage improvements in their systems. Mary is an exceptional steward of our donor scholarships and has improved communication with students and enhanced the communication between students and donors. Additionally, she has been very proactive with our study abroad scholarship application process. Mary's efforts to go the extra mile with her scholarship process, leads to a cycle of success.

Rachael Voas, program coordinator II, Grants Hub

Rachael Voas, program coordinator II, Grants Hub, was nominated by Stacy Renfro. Since early 2016, Rachael has been working as a program coordinator for the Grant’s Hub at Iowa State University. In addition to her normal job duties, Rachael took on a very important role as an Interim Project Manager on the Center for Statistics and Application of Forensic Evidence team. She performed duties you would expect from an Interim Project Manager, but without actually receiving a title or recognition for this contribution. CSAFE is an externally funded project and the federal agency expects the highest standards from the research team and any under-delivering component is severely dealt with. Rachael played a key role in stabilizing ISU’s relationship with this particular funding agency and then used her leadership to establish a structure for the center to be successful.

What also makes Rachael truly special is her commitment to act as a resource for her fellow P&S colleagues. She is an outstanding resource and mentor. Through her work in the Grant’s Hub, and her previous role at ISU’s Engineering Research Institute, Rachael interacts with faculty and staff from every part of the university as well as professionals at research organizations across the country. Rachael leads interdisciplinary research development efforts, and develops project management training sessions and other resources for faculty and P&S staff. Her commitment to her work and advancing the strategic research missions at Iowa State is unparalleled.

2016 CYtation Team Award Recipients

Cy-MOOC Project Team
Engineering-LAS Online Learning (ELO)

The Cy-MOOC Project Team was nominated by Mark Woolley.  This team developed the Iowa Presidential Caucuses MOOC (massive open online course) and was Iowa State University’s first foray into this type of class offering.  This project utilized teamwork and collaboration and involved detailed project conceptualization, design, marketing, as well as delivery.  The course had four sessions that were each four weeks long and were offered between September 2015 and January 2016 to worldwide learners.  The course was free, self-paced and highly interactive and users had the flexibility of exploring any topic of their choice related to the Iowa caucuses and its significance on U.S Presidential elections.  The course had over 2,500 participants.  This MOOC project positively impacted ISU by giving the university a better understanding on how to create an enriching MOOC and showcase ISU’s high-quality learning adventure to the global audience by marketing the university and enhancing the brand to recruit new students.

Team Members:
Ritushree Chatterjee, instructional development specialist, ELO
Allison Colton, student course manager, ELO
Meriesa Elliot, graphic designer II, ELO
Kara Hoegh, student video producer, ELO
Darshana Juvale, instructional development specialist, ELO
Andy Lawson, student video producer, ELO
Rema Nilakanta, program coordinator II, ELO
Amanda Rasmusson, program coordinator II, ELO
Chad Sanborn, graphic designer senior, ELO
Steffen Schmidt, university professor, Political Science
Emily Tosoni, student course manager, ELO
Caglar Yildirim, graduate assistant-teaching, ELO

Early FAFSA Promotional Team
Student Financial Aid

The Early FAFSA Promotional team was nominated by Roberta Johnson. After decades on the same timeline, the student financial aid application process, beginning with the 2017-18 academic year, jumped ahead -- by three months. The U.S. Department of Education's Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, became available on Oct. 1, and Iowa State was among the schools that set a Dec. 1 priority deadline to guarantee consideration for university grants, some scholarships and federal loans and work-study funds. Since 1992, those dates had been Jan. 1 and March 1, respectively. The Early FAFSA Promotional Team was created to widely disseminate this change to students, their parents, and the ISU Community with the goal of helping as many people as possible meet this critical deadline.  The team attacked the issue from many fronts, collaborating across the Division of Student Affairs, the University, the community, and the state to share the message.

As of the December 1, 2016 deadline, the number of undergraduate FAFSA forms received was 31,678, a 15% increase over last year. Because of the efforts of the Early FAFSA Promotional Team, more students will be assisted in financing their Iowa State University adventure.  This is the ultimate measure of success!  

Team Members:
Tiffany Ahrenholtz, enrollment services adviser II, Student Financial Aid
Katie Mott, enrollment services adviser II, Admissions & Student Financial Aid
Jacob Nolton, enrollment services adviser I, Student Financial Aid
Erin Schwartz, program coordinator II, Student Financial Aid
Ann Wessman, program manager I, Student Financial Aid

ISU Storm Water Management Team
Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S), Facilities Planning & Management (FP&M), Dept. of Residence (DoR), and Ecology, Evolution & Organismal Biology-AGLS (EEOB)

The Storm Water Management Team was nominated by Paul Richmond. The Storm Water Management Team comprised of EH&S and FP&M employees developed a best management practice (BMP) to be implemented by Iowa State University for controlling concrete cutting slurry runoff.  Slurry runoff that enters the storm water system can plug the piping as well as travel untreated to a waterway which adversely affects water quality.  The actions of this team exemplify this award by volunteering to participate in addition to their regular job duties, for identifying a simple, cost-effective BMP for a serious water quality and utility maintenance problem, for protecting natural resources, for fostering the great partnership between ISU and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, and for sharing knowledge beyond the campus borders in accordance with ISU’s mission statement.

Team Members:
Cathy Brown, program manager I, FP&M
Hannah Carroll, graduate assistant-teaching, EEOB
Robert Currie, director II, FP&M
Roger Graden, associate director residence, DoR
Lester Lawson, manager facilities maintenance, FP&M
Steven Mayberry, environmental specialist III, EH&S
Dean McCormick, (former) director II, FP&M
Clay Miller, environmental specialist senior, EH&S
Michael Murray, engineer V, Utilities Enterprise-FP&M
Merry Rankin, program manager I, FP&M
Angela Solberg, landscape architect II, FP&M
Lindsey Wanderscheid, engineer V, Utilities Enterprise-FP&M

WiSE 30th Anniversary Team
Program for Women in Science & Engineering (WiSE)

The five-person Women in Science and Engineering team was nominated by Lora Leigh-Chrystal. 2016 saw the WiSE program not only offer regularly scheduled programming to a record number of undergraduate women in STEM but also developing and implementing special programs and events to celebrate its thirtieth anniversary. Some of the new programs included a monthly newsletter, dinners featuring alumni and national speakers, and an awards banquet for 150 guests. WiSE staff also hosted STEMfest, a festival on campus for kids K-12 to explore science, technology, engineering, and math. Over 600 individuals attended STEMfest from over 25 Iowa communities.

Team Members:
Lora Leigh Chrystal, program manager I, WiSE
Janice Crow, program coordinator II, WiSE
Sarah DuBois, program assistant II, WiSE
Carly Miller, program coordinator I, WiSE
Allie Parrott, program coordinator II, WiSE