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Award of Distinction winners show outstanding service

Twelve employees have been honored with the Emory University Award of Distinction. Honorees were recognized at a dinner on March 27 with President James Wagner and received a $1,000 award. Each year, the award recognizes members of the Emory community who have demonstrated exceptional dedication to their jobs.

The 2012 Award of Distinction honorees are:

Michelle BooneMichelle Boone, director of communications, Office of the Executive Vice President for Health Affairs

In addition to carrying out her duties as director of communications, Boone is actively involved in various philanthropic projects around the Atlanta community. Over the past year, Boone has led her colleagues in donating gift cards to low-income retirees, gifting the Atlanta Community Food Bank with school supplies, and rallying the entire WHSCAB office to contribute more than $4,000 to the American Red Cross's tsunami relief efforts in Japan.

Holley JC ButkovichHolley JC Butkovich, senior program coordinator, Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response

An instrumental figure in cultivating the Emory emergency notification system, Butkovich is devoted to keeping Emory a safe and disaster-free community. To increase the awareness of emergency preparedness and response at Emory, she developed a comprehensive educational program that serves schools and departments throughout the University.

Julie DelliquantiJulie Delliquanti, director of the Schatten Gallery, University Libraries

For the past three years, Delliquanti has been responsible for curating and designing 33 exhibitions in the Woodruff Library. One of her exhibits, "The Future Belongs to the Discontented: The Life and Legacy of Robert W. Woodruff," attracted more than 900 visitors. Another one of Delliquanti's projects — a long-term collaboration with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution — has earned the Emory Libraries a prominent place at the Decatur Book Festival each year.

Allison Kay DykesAllison Kay Dykes, vice president, Office of Development and Alumni Relations

Dykes heads one of the nation's most acclaimed programs in alumni relations. When she's not busy sketching out a strategic plan for the Emory Alumni Association or connecting with alumni and trustees through the Leadership Task Force, Dykes can be found actively participating in other campus activities such as serving on search committees, volunteering at the Glenn School, and representing Emory at the Association of Private College and University Alumni Directors.

Kara C. GrantKara C. Grant, director of operations, Barkley Forum

True to her name, Grant has written and raised more than $1 million in grants for Emory since 2000. Much of the funds directly benefit Emory's community outreach programs, allowing them to continue serving at-risk students in Atlanta secondary schools. In May 2011, she worked tirelessly alongside the Barkley Forum executive director to organize the Glenn Pelham Foundation for Debate Education dinner. Featuring an appearance by former Gov. Roy Barnes, the event raised more than $150,000.

Herman A. HowardHerman A. Howard, assistant director of Building and Residential Services

Howard is committed to upholding Emory's reputation as a green and sustainable university. Thanks to his efforts in creating an environmentally friendly, Green Seal-approved cleaning program, Emory has been able to achieve LEED certification for its new buildings. Howard also played an instrumental role in restructuring the building and residential services staff – a shift that has been shown to improve service and productivity in the organization.

Marsha Ann HowardMarsha Ann Howard, assistant operations manager, Division of Animal Resources

In her role as a supervisor, Howard oversees operations in five different sites that span across six miles. Though the number of animals has increased while the number of employees has dwindled, the challenge only serves as a testament to Howard's ability to manage resources efficiently. Currently, she is responsible for the well-being of 14 species and approximately 10,600 animals. In her free time, she has participated in Emory's Transforming Community Project, served on the Diversity Committee of the University Senate and continues to represent the Emory LGBT community as an exemplary worker.

Nicole B. KruseNicole B. Kruse, chief development officer, The Carter Center's Health Programs

Since 2001, Kruse has dedicated herself to amassing funds for the Guinea Worm Eradication Program at The Carter Center. Earlier this year, thanks largely to Kruse's extraordinary efforts, four international donors pledged a donation of $71 million toward the cause. The funding will enable the program to wipe out Guinea worm disease throughout the world by 2015.

John C. RaudonisJohn C. Raudonis, manager of parking operations and maintenance, Campus Services

Raudonis is a favorite of the Emory community. From coordinating drop-offs for the Athletics Department's summer camp participants to helping parents and students navigate the hectic traffic at the beginning or end of a semester, Raudonis is always dedicated to improving the parking experience for everyone at Emory.

Sasha A. SmithSasha A. Smith, assistant director of programs, Center for Women

Smith is a committed humanitarian and community activist in both her personal and professional life. She's a role model on campus, where she is passionate about advocating women's rights and speaking out against intimate partner violence, and a mentor to young girls in the greater Atlanta community. Co-founder of the Tiana Angelique Notice Foundation, she volunteers her time and services to community organization like the International Women's House and the Berean Christian Church.

T. Cameron Van TranT. Cameron Van Tran, senior research project coordinator, Center for AIDS Research

As project coordinator, Tran recognizes the importance of facilitating collaboration and communication between scholars, regardless of the physical distance between them. He spearheaded an initiative that successfully connected researchers across four centers in the Southeast and fostered new working relationships. Additionally, to nurture the intellectual growth and research capabilities of new employees, Tran heads monthly meetings in which junior investigators are given an opportunity to present their research proposals and receive constructive feedback from their senior colleagues.

Maria Indah WackerlyMaria Indah Wackerly, administrative assistant, International Student and Scholar Services

Speaking English as a second language, Wackerly more than understands the challenges and difficulties that international students face every day. She takes extra care in providing incoming international scholars with key information that is easy to understand, in the form of presentations in person and written packets. In performing her administrative tasks, Wackerly has developed an innovative system that allows her to route files, communicate with departments and students, and organize documentation needed for government agency audits, all at a highly efficient and productive rate.

— Staff Reports

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