Staff Awards


Use the following links to quickly navigate through the categories below.


Excellence Award

Emily Takieddine, Director of Development for Student Life, Student Life

Reason: For raising the necessary funds and working collaboratively with the Dean of Students and Veterans Resource Center staff to establish a new Veteran’s Resource Center which has transformed how Georgia Tech supports its veterans.


Creating the Next Award

Elizabeth Miller, Director of Enrollment and Student Affairs, Ivan Allen College

Reason: For creating Shadow Day, which is unique to Georgia Tech. It empowers potential students to maximize their interests with a unique schedule specifically tailored to their interests.

Center for Assessment, Referral and Education (C.A.R.E.) TEAM, Division of Student Life

Reason: For your essential role in the creation of the C.A.R.E. Team which established a brand new, collaborative environment that provides quicker access to mental health and well-being support for students.

Team Member Names

JulieAnne Williamson, Asst. VP-Admin & Finance (Recognition only)

John Stein, VP-Stu Life & Dean of Students (Recognition only)

Carla Bradley, Dir-Counseling Center

Shannon Croft, Lead Psychiatrist

Tiffiny Hughes-Troutman, Dir-Assessment Referral Ed. Center

Ben Holton, Sr. Dir-Health Services

Michael Edwards, Sr. Dir-CRC

Sara Warner, Division Dir-Communications

Morgan Miller, Director of Communications, Campus Services

LaRonda Hollis, Clinical Case Manager

Rachel Brown, Clinical Case Manager

Easter Worden, HR Business Partner, Student Life

Mack Bowers, Assc Director, Counseling Center

Andrew Smith, Assc Director, Counseling Center


Leadership in Action Award

David Brown, Electrician II, Facilities

Reason: As Chair of the Staff Council, for launching the 5-year service recognition program, enhancing the Staff Tuition Reimbursement Program to include technical degrees and certificates and being a key supporter and promoter of the Employee Career Development Center initiative.

Steve Woodard, Assistant Director of Core Facilities, Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience

Reason: For motivating and aligning six of Georgia Tech’s groups in order to negotiate and acquire $1 million worth of cell manufacturing equipment from Coyne Scientific for $370,000. This purchase has greatly increased the capabilities of Georgia Tech’s cell manufacturing research, which will impact patients around the world.


Process Improvement Excellence Award

Mechanical Engineering Academic Advising Process Improvements TEAM, College of Sciences

Reason: For transforming the academic advising experience for students in ME and NRE with many new creative endeavors designed to improve the advising experience for all students while incorporating updated technology.

Team Members

Lenna Applebee, Academic Advisor 2

Amy Huttenhoff, Academic Advisor 1

Kristi Mehaffey, Academic Professional (Recognition only)

Hillary Sutherland, Academic Advisor 1

Laura Tolliver, Academic Advisor 2​​​

Styrofoam Recycling Pilot Team, Office of Solid Waste Management & Recycling

Reason: For creating a new Styrofoam collection and recycling system across campus which has diverted almost half a ton of Styrofoam from landfills in a 6-month time period.

Team Members

 Wilhemenia Andrews, Custodian I, Facilities

 Blake Baklini, Construction Project Manager I, Facilities

 Emma Brodzik, Campus Recycling Coordinator, Facilities

Joyce Gresham, Custodian II, Facilities

Alejuandro Hunt, Area Maintenance Manager, Facilities

Shawn Dunham, Foreman, Facilities

Ryan Lisk, Lab & Chemical Safety Ofc, Environmental Health & Safety

Todd Clarkson, Facilities Manager II, College of Engineering

Juan Archila, Director of Facilities and Capital Space Planning, College of Science

Susanne Gibboney, Research Technician II, Biological Sciences

Logan Clausnitzer, Building Coordinator II, Krone Engineered Biosystems Building

Jason Dunn, Facilities Manager, Sr., Krone Engineered Biosystems Building

Michelle Wong, Assistant Director-Business Ops., Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience 

Shweta Biliya, Research Scientist I, Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience

Sarah Neville, Campus Sustainability Proj Mgr, Campus Sustainability

Karen Ethier, Admin. Mgr. II


Service to the Community Award 

Chris Burke, Executive Director, Community Relations, Institute Relations/Government & Community Relations

Reason: For building trust among the surrounding community to demonstrate the Institute’s commitment to the City of Atlanta and its neighborhoods surrounding Georgia Tech and for your impact on students’ perspectives about poverty and privilege which has enabled them to make decisions in their careers and community service.


Spirit of Georgia Tech Award

Stacey Bass, Grants Administrator, School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Reason: For embodying Georgia Tech’s motto “Progress and Service” by being a shining emblem of operational effectiveness through constant improvement, shared insights, strategic teamwork, and creative disruption, when necessary.

Recha Reid, Program and Operations Manager for Student Innovation, Office of Undergraduate Education

ReasonFor your empathy for others, enthusiasm, and diligent work ethic which makes coming to work a joy and for developing a student innovation track for 1st year students in the Summer Initiative program which provided a student innovation experience and helped break the stigma for students who are accepted to Georgia Tech on a conditional basis.


Georgia Tech Human Resources received approval from the USG to move forward with awards. Due to the tight timeframe, some of the requirements have changed. See details below. 

February 3 | Nominations open

March 2 | Nominations close

April 2 | Winners notified

April 24 | Luncheon

If you have specific questions about any of the Staff Awards, please contact Candice Bovian at or 404.894.0490. If you have any additional questions or concerns about the USG approval process and timing please contact Cedric Franklin, Asst. Dir. HR Financial Operations at or 404.894.9516.

Nomination Process

award winners

Before You Begin

You will need the following three things to complete the online nomination process

  1. Your Georgia Tech login (ID and password) to access InfoReady, the nomination system.
  2. Questions to Answer. Each award includes its own set of questions to answer. This is in lieu of you writing a nomination letter. You can go to the award of your choice and click on the Start the Nomination button and download the questions.
  3. Two letters of support. Thoughtfully consider people who can explain different aspects of the employee’s accomplishment. The letters can come from a supervisor, colleague, client, student, or other members of the community who was directly affected by the employee’s work. The goal is to fully describe, from as many different viewpoints as possible, the employee’s attitude, specific behaviors, approach, and results.

After You Submit a Nomination

Expect an email from InfoReady confirming your nomination was received. Please ensure you have completed the following:

  1. Completely filled out the application in InfoReady.
  2. Filled out the questionnaire and attached it within InfoReady.
  3. Requested twoletters of support. You can do this via InfoReady or through your own methods. If you send the request via InfoReady, Supporters will have the opportunity to attach the letter directly within InfoReady. If you reach out to them outside of InfoReady, they can send you their letter and you can attach the letter within InfoReady.

Once the Nomination Process Closes

The Staff Awards committee will review all applications equally. However, if an application is missing any of the nomination criteria (missing questionnaire or not enough letters of support), their application will no longer be considered. 

Tips for Preparing a Successful Nomination

Follow these tips as you prepare your nomination:

  1. Ensure your application is filled out completely. Check for any misspellings!

  2. Get support. Split up the nomination questions with coworkers who are willing to help.

  3. Avoid jargon and be sure to spell out acronyms. While you are familiar with your nominee’s work, more than likely the members of the selection committee won’t be.

  4. Include measurable results. Numbers are powerful! Where appropriate, include measurable results that show how the nominee was able to save money, improve upon a process, saved time, increased staff morale, etc.

  5. Be descriptive in your nomination. Try to write more than one-sentence answers for each question. Elaborate and prove to the committee why your nominee is the best person to win the award. Use adjectives. Think about the impact your nominee has had and what it would be like if your nominee had not done what they did for you to nominate them.

Recognition Best Practices

Quick Guide to InfoReady

  1. Select the award you would like to nominate someone for. Click the Start the Nomination button. You will be re-directed to the InfoReady site. 
  2. If you have not logged in to the InfoReady site, you will need to log in and then search for the award: 
    1. In the top right corner, click Log In. 
    2. Click on the box that says "Login for Georgia Tech Users." Click the blue Georgia Tech Login button and use your GT ID and password to sign on.
      Login for Georgia Tech Users
    3. You will be presented to a page full of award for staff AND faculty. You can scroll to find the award or use the search box to find the award. 

Frequently Asked Questions

For questions not answered below, please contact Candice Bovian.

Do I qualify for an award if I am not director level or above?

Absolutely! The staff awards are for all staff who have been employed in a full-time, permanent position for at least 12 months and in good standing. If you or someone you know meets the criteria for an award then, nominate them!.

Can I nominate myself?

Definitely! You just need to fill out the application and answer the questions as if you were nominating someone else (i.e., submit your nomination in 3rd person). You will still be responsible for acquiring three letters of support.

Who is on the Staff Awards selection committee?

The Staff Awards selection committee is comprised of 10 to 12 individuals from a variety of job classifications and departments.

What is the judging process like?

Once the nominations close, the Staff Awards selection committee reads every single nomination, questionnaire, and support letter. Each nomination goes through a series of behavioral questions that varies by award and each behavior is ranked on a scale from 0 to 3. The scale is:

0 – Does not exhibit the behavior at all

1 – Exhibits basic level

2 – Exhibits intermediate level

3 – Exhibits exceptional level

Will the selection committee have the flexibility to move nominees to an award category that better suits the nominee?

Yes. The selection committee will have the ability to place a nominee in another award category that the nominee may be better suited for. A member of the selection committee will notify the nominator and discuss their recommendation if needed.

How long does the nomination process take?

The nomination process varies by individual, however, follow the three steps under the Before You Begin section to ensure you’re prepared before starting.

Is there a minimum number of years you have to be employed before you can be considered for a nomination?

Yes. A nominee needs to be in a full-time, permanent position for at least 12 months and in good standing in order to be nominated for an award.

Is there a limit to the number of nominees one college or department can submit?

Not at all! Colleges and departments are encouraged to submit nominations for employees who meet the qualifications for each of the awards.

Are research faculty eligible for staff awards?

The staff awards are for staff and non-tenure track faculty. However, if a research faculty member is nominated for their work in a non-research capacity—an administrative or organizational capacity—the nomination will be considered. Otherwise, research faculty nominations should be directed to the other Institute awards listed at

Is there an approval or vetting process for award recipients?

Yes. After the committee has selected a winner for each award, the names of the recommended award recipients will go to (1) the nominee’s direct manager, (2) the nominee’s unit HR Business Partner or representative, and (3) senior Institute leadership to ensure that the employee is in good standing with the Institute.

Can individuals previously nominated be nominated again this year?

Previous nominees can be nominated again this year if the nomination represents new accomplishments from the past year.

Can previous winners be nominated again this year?

Previous winners can only be nominated if it has been at least three years since they won. The nomination should reflect new accomplishments from the past year.

How many people are considered a team?

A team is considered a group of two or more people.