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UI staff, faculty honored for excellence

Fourteen staff members and six faculty members at The University of Iowa received awards for excellence in 2007. The staff were recognized with one of three annual staff awards for excellence presented by the UI Staff Council, including the Board of Regents Staff Excellence Awards; the honored faculty also received Excellence Awards from the Regents.

Board of Regents Staff Excellence Award

Six Board of Regents Staff Excellence Awards were given to UI staff members for outstanding accomplishments and contributions to their institutions as well as to the State of Iowa. Established in 1993, the award was created to provide a statewide forum to recognize staff members in conjunction with colleagues from the other Board of Regents institutions. Their accomplishments have significantly benefited the University, brought honor or recognition to the University, and had a significant positive impact on the State of Iowa. Each winner receives a commemorative gift, and the University grants a $1,000 prize to the winner's department to be used for his/her benefit. Recipients are listed below.


John Achrazoglou

John Achrazoglou, director, Education Technology Center in the College of Education

Achrazoglou leads teams directing desktop and communication technologies for faculty, staff, and students, and supports faculty implementing new technologies into courses and research. Achrazoglou, who has been with the University for 22 years, worked alongside fellow Regents Staff Excellence Award recipient Rebecca Anthony in developing the College of Education’s web-based ePortfolio, which combines the integration of technologies, academic course work, field experience, and a skills-based hiring tool for professional advancement. Achrazoglou has served on numerous University committees, including a chair position on the college’s diversity committee and a seat on the recent University-wide Pandemic Preparedness Task Force.


Rebecca Anthony

Rebecca Anthony, director, Educational Placement Office in the College of Education

Anthony has been with the placement office for 32 years, overseeing the department since 1998 and coordinating teacher placement before that. Anthony worked alongside fellow Regents Staff Excellence Award recipient John Achrazoglou in developing the College of Education’s web-based ePortfolio, which combines the integration of technologies, academic course work, field experience, and a skills-based hiring tool for professional advancement. Anthony, a UI alumna, has served on the Provost’s Committee, and has served on and led several University committees during her tenure. She is the coauthor of seven books and dozens of published articles.


Elaine Haddy

Elaine Haddy, associate director of human resources/information management, Human Resources

In her position, Haddy is responsible for the integrity and overall management of the Human Resource Information System and web applications within the finance and operations division. Haddy was instrumental in creating the University’s Employee Self Service site, which employees can use to review personal information as well as administrative functions. Haddy also led the development, design, and implementation of Workflow, the process of routing forms electronically for approval. Haddy has worked for the University for more than 40 years, holding positions in the payroll and finance and operations departments before joining Human Resources in 1997.


Chris Kula

Chris Kula, business manager, UI Central Mail Services and University Copy Centers

Kula has made many changes in the Central Mail Services operations during the past year, highlighted by improvements to the Central Mail Services web site and efficiencies in Campus Mail delivery routes. He conducts seminars for and provides expertise to units across campus, helping them save money on mailings by teaching proper mail piece design and efficient mailing practices. Kula also assumed responsibility for the UI Copy Centers, implementing change that will save the department $200,000 in the next fiscal year. Kula came to the University in 2000 after nearly two decades with the U.S. Postal Service, serving in his current title of business manager throughout his UI career.


Patricia W. Mason-Browne

Patricia W. Mason-Browne, assistant director of academic programs and services, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Mason-Browne, a 31-year University employee, has been a valued ambassador to the Office of Admissions in support of multicultural diversity in recruitment of underrepresented students for admission to Iowa. Mason-Browne helps plan the annual Multicultural Graduation and Recognition Banquet, and has served as a mentor in the Opportunity at Iowa program. A speaker of Spanish and Portuguese, Mason-Browne oversees Foreign Language Proficiency Testing for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. She has served numerous University organizations over the years, including the UI Family Issues Committee, the Rape Victim Advocacy Program, and the Board of Associated University Women.


Marinea Mehrhoff

Marinea Mehrhoff, supervisor of radiochemistry/chemist III, University Hygienic Lab

Mehrhoff has spent the past 30 years working for the University, starting as a lab assistant at University Hospitals and Clinics while earning her degree in clinical science-medical technology. She joined University Hygienic Laboratory (UHL) as a chemist in 1988, and currently holds the rank of chemist III, supervising the radiochemistry section of UHL. During the early 1990s, Mehrhoff analyzed Iowa groundwater samples for presence of radon. She provided consultation to Iowa and other states regarding radiochemical testing and analysis of drinking water. In recent years, she has been active within the Conference on Radiation Control Program Directors.


The University of Iowa Outstanding Staff Award

Six staff members received the UI Outstanding Staff Award. The winners were recognized for “outstanding accomplishments and contributions that significantly benefited or brought honor or recognition to the University.” All recipients were recognized at a University event this fall. Recipients are listed below.


Janet Crow

Janet Crow, dental registrar, College of Dentistry

With 41 years of experience at the University, Crow finds her knowledge utilized by administration, faculty, staff, and students. Her guidance is applied to grade reporting, course registration/reports, and numerous students’ needs, including applications for board exams and graduate programs. She represents the college in all matters concerning dental and graduate student registration. Crow was one of the first nonfaculty in the college to be nominated and selected as an honorary member of Omicron Kappa Upsilon, a national dental honor society. She is active on University committees as well as College of Dentistry committees. Crow joined the College of Dentistry in July 1969, and became dental registrar in 1988.


Diana Harris

Diana Harris, project and communications manager, College of Engineering

Harris manages projects that improve the technological experience of students, faculty, and staff in the College of Engineering. She has managed the complex transition to a new e-mail system shortly after joining Engineering Computer Systems Support. Harris’s commitment to diversity and issues of concern to women has led to her participation on several committees. She is serving her second term on the Council on the Status of Women, for which she also serves as webmaster, and has previously chaired the Jean Y. Jew Women’s Rights Award nominations committee. Harris was instrumental in initiating the Engineering Staff Council. She has 26 years of University experience (19 continuous), and assumed her current position in 1998.


Patricia Kosier

Patricia Kosier, human resources manager, University Hygienic Laboratory

Kosier plays a critical role in recruiting, hiring, and retaining University Hygienic Laboratory (UHL) staff. She is involved throughout the process, from advertising positions to ensuring annual evaluations are performed. She played an invaluable role in the recent transition of the UHL leadership team. Kosier serves on UHL’s executive leadership team, and is part of the lab’s organizational effectiveness team, providing support and guidance to environmental health executives and leadership teams. Kosier was one of the first employees on campus to earn a Professional Human Resources Certificate, which distinguishes her as highly skilled in multiple facets of HR. She started with the University in 1978 in internal medicine and joined UHL in 1984.


Jerry Slezak

Jerry Slezak, parking cashier attendant, Parking and Transportation

Slezak has made an amazing impression on College of Dentistry colleagues and visitors alike during his 37 years of University employment. His role, which includes helping elderly patients and giving directions to those visiting the dentistry campus, is essential for patients’ access to dental care, and critical to the educational and service missions of the college. Slezak’s disposition allows him to enforce restrictions placed on parking in the dentistry lot, and to do so while leaving people with a positive impression of the college and the University as visitors leave the premises.


Katherine Walden

Katherine Walden, assistant to the chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Walden was instrumental in setting up the In Vitro Fertilization Program, one of the most successful programs of its kind in the country. She was involved in the design of a new women's health clinic in University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. Walden serves on committees throughout the hospital system and the University. She is an advocate for women’s and children’s issues, as shown through her action on statewide boards and committees, and as a member of the Family Planning Council of Iowa Executive Directors. Walden has worked at Iowa for 25 years; she joined OB/GYN in 1985, and assumed her current post in 1998.


Kristy Walker

Kristy Walker, director of clinical applications, Health Care Information Systems

Walker is responsible for directing computer application support for the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (UIHC) electronic medical record system, the pharmacy and lab information system, the operating room management system, and a variety of other systems supporting clinical specialties. She leads a team of 55 full-time employees in supporting and enhancing the role of information technology in the delivery of safe and efficient medical care. Walker is leading the installation and configuration of an entirely new suite of clinical information system tools—a project that will impact the delivery of health care at UIHC for the next 20 years. Walker has worked at the University for 23 years, in areas such as preventive medicine and environmental health. She joined Health Care Information Systems in 1983, and became associate director in October 2003.


The David J. Skorton Staff Excellence Award for Public Service

The David J. Skorton Staff Excellence Award for Public Service is given annually to individuals who have made significant contributions and have shown “exceptional imagination and dedication to improving the university community.” Service must include activities of high quality in staff governance, committee work, policy improvement, program creation, etc. and must be outside normal job responsibilities. The winners will be recognized at a university event this fall and will receive $500 and a commemorative gift. Recipients are listed below.


Jodi Linley

Jodi Linley, assistant director, Iowa Biosciences Advantage Program

Linley developed and teaches the College Transition course that helps first-year students ease into the college atmosphere, focusing her section on helping students of color succeed. She also teaches professional development to first-year, sophomore, junior, and senior Iowa Biosciences Advantage students. Linley has served on the Women’s Resource and Action Center advisory board since 2003. She created “The Iowa Edge,” a retention program that helps first-year students of color and first-generation college students adjust to life at a large university. Linley has been working for the University since 1995, and she received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The University of Iowa.


Barbara Spence

Barbara Spence, administrative specialist II, Department of Microbiology

Since 1995, Spence has served on more than two dozen University and college committees, including Staff Council, COGS bargaining team, Office of the Provost review committee, and the College of Medicine dean search committee. Her peers consider her a tireless advocate for students. In her position, Spence plans, organizes, directs, and evaluates administrative aspects and activities of the microbiology department. Her work on the Council on the Status of Women has positively impacted many women on campus. Spence has worked at the University for the past 29 years, 14 years in her current position with the Department of Microbiology.


2007 Regents Award for Faculty Excellence

Six University of Iowa faculty members have won the 2007 Regents Award for Faculty Excellence. Given by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, the award honors faculty members for work representing a significant contribution to excellence in public education. Each honoree will receive $1,000. Recipients are listed below.


Randall Bezanson

Randall Bezanson, David H. Vernon Professor of Law and former UI vice president for finance

Bezanson’s scholarship spans the fields of administrative law, constitutional law, First Amendment theory, defamation and privacy law, law and medicine, and the history of freedom of the press. Bezanson graduated from the UI College of Law and later clerked for Justice Harry A. Blackmun on the U.S. Supreme Court during the 1972–73 term when Roe v. Wade was decided. Bezanson has drafted legislation on a broad range of topics, including civil commitment of the mentally ill, treatment of the terminally ill, surrogacy and assisted conception, and defamation and invasion of privacy.


Beverly Davidson

Beverly Davidson, Roy J. Carver Biomedical Research Chair in the UI Department of Internal Medicine

Davidson is internationally recognized for her work on genetic diseases that cause brain dysfunction and in the emerging science of RNA interference. Davidson’s pioneering work in neurodegenerative diseases is focused on translating basic research findings into patient therapies. In addition to appointments in the Departments of Neurology and Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Davidson is also co-director of the Center for Gene Therapy, director of the UI Gene Transfer Vector Core, and vice chair for basic research in internal medicine.


James Gloer

James Gloer, Roy J. Carver/Ralph L. Shriner Professor of Chemistry in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Gloer joined the UI faculty in 1984. His research focuses on the discovery of new antibiotics and potential anti-cancer agents. He teaches organic chemistry at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and has supervised 22 doctoral dissertations. Gloer has served frequently on NIH review panels, and is a past president of the American Society of Pharmacognosy, a professional organization of scientists working in the area of bioactive natural products. He is a collegiate fellow in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and was recently named the Roy J. Carver/Ralph L. Shriner Professor of Chemistry.



Adalaide “Dee” Morris, John C. Gerber Professor of English in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Morris is a major researcher in the fields of poetry, poetics and more recently, new media. Morris has served on the UI faculty since 1974, where she is a legendary teacher of poetry at every level, and she has pioneered courses on new media poetics and on poetic communities. Morris served as chair of the Department of English from 1995-99 and on many important UI committees, including searches for two presidents. She has also served as president of the Association of Departments of English.


Ernest Pascarella

Ernest Pascarella, Mary Louise Petersen Professor of Higher Education in the College of Education

Pascarella has focused his research and writing on the impact of college on students and student persistence in higher education. His 1991 book, How College Affects Students, received the Research Achievement Award from the Study of Higher Education. Pascarella’s research has been supported by the National Institute of Education, the National Science Foundation, the Office of Educational Research and Improvement, the American College Personnel Association, and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.


Alec Scranton

Alec Scranton, professor of chemical and biochemical engineering and associate dean for academic programs, College of Engineering

Scranton, an expert in polymer science and engineering, is director of the National Science Foundation–based Industry/University Cooperative Research Center for Fundamentals and Applications of Photopolymerizations, a joint center between The University of Iowa and the University of Colorado. In his role as associate dean at the University, he has led a major reshaping of engineering curriculum over the last several years, and he has shepherded significant increases in student enrollment, the honors program, and the number of students graduating with bachelor’s degrees in engineering.

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