Return to Front Page About the Gazette | Publication Schedule Contents of the Current Print Edition Search the Gazette | Browse Back Issues Send Us Your News Carolina's Home Page UNC's News Site
UNC home page UNC home page UNC home UNC home UNC home UNC home UNC home UNC home
Today's date:


* * University awards recognize employee excellence
* * Lackey to direct Office of Federal Affairs
* * Wittekind to lead reesenews as interim executive producer
* * In memoriam
    Reynolds, former business school professor
    Sitterson, wife of former chancellor

University awards recognize employee excellence

Eight employees were recognized for their outstanding contributions Dec. 2 at a reception at the George Watts Hill Alumni Center. Six people received the Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence and two received the Excellence in Management Awards.

The Chancellor’s Awards were established in 1991 to recognize contributions made by University employees based on meritorious or distinguished accomplishments. Recipients received a monetary award of $1,000, a special leave award of 24 hours and a framed certificate presented by Bruce Carney, executive vice chancellor and provost.

The winners also become the University’s nominees for the Governor’s Award – the highest honor a state employee can receive. Winners were:

* *Greg Klaiber, digital media labs manager in the Undergraduate Library;
* *Gale Noble, accounting technician in Energy Services;
* *Lane Cooke, program coordinator for the Family and Children’s Resource Program and clinical professor in the School of Social Work;
* *Todd Freeman, building commissioning technician in Energy Management;
* *Alana Maffessanti, safety manager in Facilities Services; and
* *Cindy Shea, director of the UNC Sustainability Office.

Winners of Chancellor’s Awards pose for a photo after the Dec. 2 reception with Bruce Carney, executive vice chancellor and provost. Pictured are, from left, Greg Klaiber, Alana Maffessanti, Cindy Shea, Carney, Todd Freeman, Gale Noble and Lane Cooke.

The Excellence in Management Awards were established in 1998 to recognize accomplishments in management. Recipients received a monetary award of $500 and a framed certificate presented by Richard Mann, vice chancellor for finance and administration. Winners were:

Dick Mann, center, vice chancellor for finance and administration, stands with recipients of Excellence in Management Awards. They are Deborah Hawkins, left, and Stephanie Thurman.

* *Deborah Hawkins, parking control and special event manager in the Department of Public Safety; and
* *Stephanie Thurman, office manager for the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost.

Klaiber was recognized for developing innovative new approaches to meet needs and requests in the media lab.

Nominators praised him for avidly investigating current and emerging technologies that could enhance the services and support provided by the lab, while conscientiously using available library resources to the best effect. 

Noble used her personal experience to inspire a solution to a problem that affected University, UNC Health Care and General Administration employees, past and present.

When she tried to take out a loan against her UNC 403(b) account that was administered by ING, Noble was told that she could not have access to the money. Noble’s extensive research and collaboration with the University resulted in a resolution for the 403(b) ING plan participants. 

Cooke, who was also this year’s winner of the Outstanding Encouragement of Learning and Development Award, was recognized for her commitment to encouraging each individual’s development. Nominators said Cooke sees relationships as critical to the success of an organization. By participating on committees and listening to program staff, she consistently generates new ideas for services.

As a team leader for a yearlong energy savings project to reduce the University’s utility costs, Freeman helped Carolina save more than $1.5 million this year. He worked to improve system performance while improving the conditions in the building and reducing maintenance requirements. 

His conservation efforts also resulted in saving more than 10 million gallons of reclaimed water and more than 12,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions reductions. 

Nominators praised Maffessanti for going above and beyond her job requirements to create a culture of safety. Not only does she make sure co-workers have the equipment and ability to correct hazardous situations, she follows through with issues from start to finish.

In making sure work orders are completed, Maffessanti addresses mechanical problems as well as behavioral change.

Shea’s proactive efforts to seek and develop opportunities to promote sustainability across campus and throughout the state earned praise from her nominators.

Evidence of those efforts includes the University’s receipt of the 2005 State Government Sustainability Award, recent recognition by the Princeton Review as a “College with a Conscience” (receiving 96 of 99 rating points) and a recent rating of A- on the Sustainable Endowments Institute’s Sustainability Report Card. 

Nominated for her commitment to mentoring and staff development, Hawkins was recognized for her dedication to in-service training and work to develop new systems for improving interaction and team development.

A 20-year veteran of the Parking Control division, Hawkins recently earned a master’s certificate in Community Preparedness and Disaster Management while working full time and has applied those concepts to her management style. 

Not only does Thurman provide administrative support to Carney, she oversees three other executive-level administrative support staff. Nominators commended Thurman for her extraordinary knowledge of countless aspects of the University community.

Often managing an immense workload, they said, Thurman rarely lets trying circumstances affect her demeanor. A person of high integrity, she continues to serve the University with dedication after 22 years of service.

* *

Lackey to direct Office of Federal Affairs


* *
* *
* *

Miles Lackey, the University’s new director of the Office of Federal Affairs (OFA), comes to Carolina from the UNC system office in Washington, D.C.

There, he spent four years working with Congress and federal agencies on legislative, regulatory and budget issues affecting the system and the higher education community.

He also has previous experience as an adviser to former U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole on budget and appropriations issues.

“It’s a challenging time for higher education in D.C.,” said Lackey, who assumed his University post Dec. 1.

“The current budget environment is forcing all institutions to rethink the way they engage Congress and the administration. We, too, must make adjustments if we are to reach our goals of growing the research enterprise and maintaining investments in student-based aid.” 

Because the federal budget has been reduced to a zero-sum game, he said, the academic community has to make a more compelling argument to Congress to be able to maintain funding for vital federal programs.

“Moving forward, our advocacy strategy must enlist the help of private industry partners that acknowledge the fundamental role that universities will play in a 21st-century economy,” Lackey said.

“In addition, our new strategy must embrace the use of quantifiable data when possible to promote our agenda.” 

OFA plans to pursue the University’s goals in several ways.

It will work with Congress to maintain investments in critical research agencies, including the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation and Department of Defense, which support more than $400 million in research annually at Carolina.

OFA will pursue appropriations in areas in which the University is highly competitive.

“We’ll work with Congress to ensure that agencies devote resources to competitions that we are sure to benefit from,” Lackey said.

The office also will help tap new sources of funding at the federal agencies, he said. 

“Not all agency-based funds are competitively awarded,” he explained. “Rather, some agencies fund and/or support unsolicited proposals. Such opportunities will now be more prevalent, as money that used to be earmarked by Congress is rolled over to agency discretionary accounts.”

Communicating the impact that federally sponsored student aid makes on campus and around the state is key to these efforts.

Last year, Carolina students benefited from more than $40 million in federal student aid, and without this assistance, higher education would have been out of reach for many students, Lackey said. 

“The budget crisis has led many in Congress to consider reducing investments in Pell Grants and subsidized student loans – we simply can’t allow that to happen,” he said.

Even with the economic challenges ahead, Lackey is optimistic about a number of areas that he said are ripe for bipartisan compromise. 

For instance, a modernization of the country’s patent system would promote innovation. Next year, Lackey will chair a task force of higher education lobbyists involved in negotiating a compromise to the patent reform bill. 

With more than 450 patents that help generate millions of dollars in licensing income, the University community would feel the direct impact of such reform.

“It is my hope that a new patent regime will maintain the protections included in the current system, yet help to facilitate the transfer of our research into usable products and treatments that will benefit society and grow the economy,” he said. Lackey remains optimistic that such compromise is possible.

A native of Statesville, Lackey earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Lenoir-Rhyne College, and he holds a master’s degree in business administration from Carolina and a master’s degree in public administration from George Mason University.

For additional information about the Office of Federal Affairs, refer to

* *

Wittekind to lead reesenews as interim executive producer

Monty Cook, who held a fixed-term appointment in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, resigned from his position Nov. 16.

The school’s dean, Jean Folkerts, had informed Cook that she decided to seek his dismissal from the University because of misconduct involving a female student in violation of the University’s Policy on Improper Relationships Between Students and Employees. Folkerts had evidence that Cook sent sexually explicit text messages to the student, indicating that he initiated and fostered an amorous relationship with her.

Folkerts accepted Cook’s resignation in lieu of forwarding her recommendation for dismissal to the Office of the Provost.

Cook, former senior vice president and editor at The Baltimore Sun, was hired by the school last March and served as executive producer of the Reese Felts Digital News Project. The privately funded student-developed initiative combines traditional and experimental communications and uses that content as a foundation for research into audience behavior and decision-making trends.

Don Wittekind, an assistant professor in the journalism school, now serves as interim executive producer of reesenews.

* *

In memoriam

Reynolds, former business school professor
Isaac Newton Reynolds, who taught in the Kenan-Flagler Business School for four decades, died Nov. 15. He was 89.

He earned a B.S. in business administration from East Carolina University before coming to Carolina, where he earned his M.B.A. and Ph.D. in business administration. Here, Reynolds served as the chair of the accounting department and wrote several accounting textbooks. He also was an adviser in the General College and the recipient of an outstanding teaching award.

Donations in Reynolds’ memory may be made to Amity Methodist Church, 825 North Estes Drive, Chapel Hill 27514, or Reynolds/Langenderfer MAC Fellowship, c/o the Kenan Center, CB# 3440.

Sitterson, wife of former chancellor
Nancy Howard Sitterson, a Carolina alumna, active member of the University and Chapel Hill communities, and the wife of the late Chancellor Carlyle Sitterson, died Nov. 29. She was 91.

The Sittersons, both natives of Kinston, married in 1944 and completed graduate work at Carolina – Nancy Sitterson, in the School of Social Work.

Donations in Sitterson’s memory may be sent to any of the following organizations: Planned Parenthood, Chapel Hill; Child Care Network, Pittsboro; Thompson Children’s Home, Charlotte; Episcopal Relief & Development Netsforlife, Chapel of the Cross; Meals on Wheels, Chapel Hill; and People of Faith Against the Death Penalty, North Carolina.

Bookmark and Share

Follow UNC on Facebook

December 15, 2010

Click here to read the
Dec. 15 issue as a pdf


* *Celebrating the season across campus

* *Dorrance came to Carolina as a walk-on, then hung around to build a sports dynasty

* *Pelland learned to believe in – and grow – ‘the Carolina spirit’

* *Ervin’s steady guidance has helped Carolina remain a university of the people

* *

2009 - 2010

* *





* *

(919) 962-7124 - office
(919) 962-2279 - fax

The Gazette staff is always looking for ideas for interesting feature stories. Do you have one to share?

NEXT ISSUE: January 12, 2011

Copyright 2008 - 2010 The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

UNC home UNC home UNC home UNC home Carolina home Carolina home