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UC Riverside Staff Who Make a Difference

UC Riverside Staff Assembly Group Honors Staff Who Make a Difference

Aaron Bushong and Stan Morrison Are UC Riverside’s 2003-04 “Outstanding Staff”

(May 5, 2004)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. ( -- Chancellor France A. Cordova and the UC Riverside Staff Assembly honored eleven employees for excellence Monday, May 3 in a ceremony at the UCR Extension Center. Aaron Bushong, an academic advisor in the Bourns College of Engineering and Stan Morrison, campus athletic director, were chosen for the top honor of “Outstanding Staff” for 2003-04.
Nine other staff members were honored as “Staff Who Make a Difference” because of their devotion to their careers, their campus and their community.

“In an era when it is difficult to reward employees financially, this kind of internal honor is especially important recognition for a job well done,” said Tracy Kahn, curator of the Citrus Variety Collection and the chair of the Outstanding Staff Award Selection Committee. “We learned a great deal about how many dedicated people work on campus.”

This annual ceremony is designed to bring attention to staff members who are not only excellent in their jobs, but also volunteer for campus programs and events and serve the larger community.

A Staff Assembly committee combs through nominations and decides who will make it into the final pool of award winners. The “Outstanding Staff” winners are a surprise announced at the ceremony. They were:

Aaron Bushong, (UCR Class of ’92)
Aaron has worked on campus for nearly six years, and currently serves as lead academic advisor and director of outreach for the Marlan and Rosemary Bourns College of Engineering. Aaron was instrumental in developing the highly successful College of Engineering Ambassador Program, which provides a pool of outstanding College of Engineering students who assist with a variety of College and campus-wide events. Aaron is also well known on campus and in the community for his organizational skills and efficiency, and he has conducted numerous time management and goal-setting workshops. He is currently serving on the Staff Assembly Executive Board, and on numerous other campus committees. In addition to all of this, Aaron shares his expertise working with local children to help develop their skills in public presentation.

Stan Morrison
Stan is Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and has proudly led the UCR Highlanders in their transition to NCAA Division I. He is well known for his positive attitude and ability to encourage and motivate those he comes into contact with. Under Stan’s guidance, UCR’s athletics teams have proven competitive in Division I play, and Highlander student-athletes also are succeeding in the classroom with higher GPAs than the general UCR student population. Always willing to help wherever he is needed, Stan is very active on the UCR campus, and has been a speaker for virtually every service club in the area. Stan is also very active with numerous service clubs and charitable organizations including Patterson Park Partners, National Youth Sports Program, Olive Crest, High Five America, Riverside Humane Society, and The Unforgottens.

Nine other staff members earned “Staff Who Make A Difference” awards:

Katherine Bailey, (UCR Class of ’93)
Katherine came to UC Riverside 14 years ago, and serves as academic advisor for the undergraduate Business Administration major for AGSM. For the past year, AGSM has been short staffed, and for 8 months Katherine went far above and beyond the call of duty by accepting the responsibility of evaluating, advising, and performing final degree checks for all 1,317 Business Administration and Pre-Business undergraduate students. During that time, Katherine worked tirelessly to ensure that the needs of the business students were always met, and she did so without complaint. Katherine has served on numerous campus committees, and volunteers at Commencement every year to celebrate with her students and their families.

Micki Clowney
Micki has worked at UCR since 1995, and currently serves as Regional Coordinator for UCR’s Early Academic Outreach Program. Micki’s energy and enthusiasm for higher education inspires underrepresented middle school and high school students to pursue a college education. Her captivating presentations to students and parents have been highly effective in helping students and parents understand the college admissions process and how to apply for federal and state aid. Micki has also worked with college students in various capacities, especially in the areas of advising and student development. Micki’s deep passion for her work extends well outside her work hours, and she has led workshops and seminars for youth about leadership development, college awareness, life skills, self-esteem, goal setting, and relationships.

Phyllis Gill, (UCR Class of ’72)
Phyllis serves as Student Affairs Assistant for the Departments of Art and Art History. Graduating from UCR as an English major in 1972, she took her first job at UCR in 1973. Phyllis has been called the “heart and soul” of the art department, and is known for her unfailing cheerfulness, and complete commitment to scholarship, artistic expression, and the welfare of the students, visitors, staff and faculty. At a time when the student population has increased dramatically, Phyllis helps department students through each step of the enrollment, advising, graduation, and review process. Additionally, she has committed herself to the campus as an active alumna, and has served on numerous campus committees.

Sherry Gonzalez
Sherry currently serves as Academic Personnel Assistant for the newly formed AEEI, Administrative Unit that provides administrative support for Environmental Sciences, the Air Pollution Research Center, Earth Sciences, and the Institute for Geophysics and Planetary Physics. Sherry was instrumental in leading the successful merger of four administrative units into the AEEI Administrative Unit, and her caring, compassionate, and thoughtful handling of many of the issues accompanying the restructuring was especially valuable as she brought her colleagues together to form an even better and more efficient unit. Sherry is known for her willingness to assist faculty, students and her fellow staff members. She has served as Recording Secretary for Staff Assembly and on numerous other campus committees, and she also volunteers her time off-campus at her children’s schools, and at her church.

Yvonne Howard
Yvonne has worked at UCR for three years, and has served as Management Services Officer for the Department of Creative Writing since June 2003. Within a week of her arrival in Creative Writing, she began to orchestrate the move of half of the Creative Writing department faculty to new offices in another building. Her excellent coordination of these moves resulted in the Creative Writing faculty all being successfully relocated in a very short time with a minimum of disruption. Yvonne also effectively reorganized the department’s ledgers to improve the efficiency of her department. In June 2003, she received her BA degree with honors from Cal State San Bernardino and she will be receiving her Masters in Education, from Cal State San Bernardino this June.

Dallas Johnson
Dallas is Service Enterprises Director at UCR supervising the operations of Printing & Reprographics, Fleet Services, and Mail Services. Under his leadership the Service Enterprises unit has grown from $1 million in total sales to sales exceeding $8.5 million. His operations have received national recognition for excellence and are the benchmark for best practices in the UC system. He is the founding chair of Service Providers Day that has had a cumulative attendance of more than 12,000 UCR employees. Dallas is a great fan of the UCR Highlanders and as a volunteer for the UCR Athletics Development office has personally raised over $80,000 for student athletes. Dallas has served on a number of campus committees including the Outstanding Staff Award Selection Committee, and the Staff Assembly Car Show Committee.

Carolyn Parker-Carter
Carolyn currently serves as Administrative Assistant in Physical Plant, providing customer service and administrative support for Building and Special Services and Landscape and Refuse Services. Carolyn is known for her excellence in servicing customers and her outstanding problem-solving skills. In recognition of her dedication and commitment to service, Carolyn was awarded the Physical Plant “Excellence in Customer Service Award” in June 2003 and in 1994 she received the “Women Who Make A Difference Award” from the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women. Participation in the campus community has always been important to Carolyn: she has volunteered for Commencement and the Riverside Orange Blossom Festival, served as Chair of the Staff Assembly Bake Sale from 1991 — 1993 and has co-chaired both the March of Dimes Walk for America and the American Heart Walk.

Bill Schmechel, (UCR Class of ’74, and ’77)
As Director of the Office of Research Compliance in the Office of Research Affairs, Bill oversees the review of issues related to research compliance, including human and animal subjects, biohazardous materials in research and teaching, and conflict of interest issues arising in the research arena. Bill led the move to automate many of the functions of his office allowing for e-submissions of most forms, and the creation of Web sites to provide clients with easy-to-access materials. His commitment to UCR is demonstrated through his participation on a number of task forces, search committees, building review committees, including the Chancellor's Committee on Campus Morale, and he supports the community as a volunteer with Habitat for Humanity, and as a youth soccer coach.

Cynthia Smith
Cindi serves as Administrative Analyst in the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Dean's Office, and supports public information and outreach about College academic activities through print and web-based media and public events. She was instrumental in moving the College from paper course forms to an electronic format, making CHASS the first College to develop this type of system. Cindi is known for her kind and accessible manner, and she serves as a key resource person in the CHASS Dean’s office. Her extraordinary event planning skills were demonstrated when Cindi served as the point person for the grand opening celebration for the Arts Building in 2001. She has served on various Staff Assembly committees over the years. Cindi is involved in various ministry programs for her church, and served as a volunteer for the Red Cross.


The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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