The 2018 Faculty and Staff Recognition Ceremony, held last Friday, began with recognition of several faculty members for their 5-year service, followed by 10, 15, and so forth to retirement.
“It’s so important to come together as a community to celebrate and recognize each other for our years of service, our promotion and scholarship, and for achieving these milestones and transitions into retirement,” said Devorah Lieberman, University president, while opening the ceremony.
Among special acknowledgments announced, the Classified Employee of the year Cherice Sirna, administrative assistant in the College of Law was presented with this honor by Kevin Marshall, interim dean of the College of Law.
Marshall explained that Sirna’s role as administrative assistant includes advising, registration, and creating a bridge between faculty, staff and administrators.
“The entire time she remains affirming, respectful, humble, accountable, committed, inclusive, empathetic, responsive, passionate, and very positive,” Marshall said.
The Administrative/Professional Employee of the Year Award was presented by Ian Lising, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Lising presented the award by reciting a poem to introduce the winner.
“With a bright smile, and a twinkle in her eyes too, faces the impossible and says ‘I’ll see what I can do,’” Lising said. “If you realize what she’s done you’ll just say ‘wow!’ So please take this moment to cheer our great hero, our beloved Carrie O’Connor.”
Lising presented this award to O’Connor by also acknowledging the integral role the registrar’s office plays as a whole at the University of La Verne.
“The whole registrar’s office does so much work for us and we never get to celebrate them, day in and day out, and I just wanted to make sure that everyone knew who Carrie was,” Lising said. “So next time you can know who to thank.”
Issac Carter, assistant professor of education, and Chris Krich, head football coach, both won the Spirit of La Verne Awards, which were presented by Julissa Espinoza, assistant director of community engagement and Aracely Torres, assistant director of diversity and inclusivity.
A video presentation showed students and faculty members sharing the impact Krich and Carter had made on them.
“It’s not just students that you have a great impact on, but it’s also faculty at the University who you help through your forceful words to reflect and truly think about what they’re contributing to student’s lives,” Roy Kwon, assistant professor of sociology, said about Carter.
Krich was described as dedicated to serving others first and inspiring to students strive to be better people.
“They exemplify and further the University’s core values,” Espinoza said. “We would like to congratulate and recognize Dr. Carter and Coach Chris Krich for playing a role in developing a community that values and fosters learning, ethics, engagement, and inclusivity.”
The Ellsworth Johnson Service Award was presented by Provost Jonathan Reed to Math professor Michael Frantz, who is also retiring this spring.
“Our honoree listens carefully to all sides, helps shape consensus, provides feedback in constructive ways while also being frank and honest, and is willing to set aside personal agendas to promote the success of La Verne students,” Reed said.
As the ceremony came to a close, Lieberman honored 11 faculty members for their retirement and emeriti status, as she concluded with final remarks.
“This is a great time to be a member of our community at the University of La Verne,” Lieberman said. “Let’s remember that, let’s recognize that, as we move forward to do nothing more than be among ourselves and to serve our students, our mission, our university, our vision.”
Jocelyn Arceo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.