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Staff members honored at employee luncheon

April 10, 2015

Longtime Stephens employee Nina Stawski was recognized yesterday with the College’s highest honor bestowed on a staff member.

Stawski has worked at Stephens for 17 years and is currently the access services librarian at Hugh Stephens Library. She is this year’s recipient of the Distinguished Staff Service Award.

In their nominations for her, colleagues praised Stawski for going above and beyond to serve Stephens and students without expecting anything in return, President Dianne Lynch said during yesterday’s Employee Recognition Ceremony. True to form, Stawski had no idea the descriptions were about her until her name was called.

A total of eight Stephens employees were honored during the annual recognition luncheon. Dalton Black, a stablehand who has been with the College for five years, was awarded the Reaching for the Stars Award for his contributions. Black is known for being willing to lend a hand wherever he is needed, helping new employees learn to use equipment at the Equestrian Center and doing the heavy lifting around the barns.

Longtime custodian Cindy Hunt and Sara Linde, a Stephens alumna who teaches equestrian studies, each received a Customer Service Award. Hunt was nominated for her dedication to the College and the interest she takes in her co-workers’ lives. Linde is practically famous for her dedication to the equestrian program and her students.

Dan Schultz, an assistant professor of theatre, received the Community Service award for his contributions to the greater Columbia area.

This year's Teamwork Award went to the three-person Student Success Center team comprised of Margaret Campbell, Sady Mayer Strand and Rachel Utrecht. The department helps students who need extra attention and hosts information sessions on study and other success factors.


During yesterday’s luncheon, Campbell was also honored for her 40th anniversary at Stephens. Co-workers surprised her with special remarks, a bouquet of flowers and a special gift. Campbell has served in a number of roles on campus since she began in 1974, including as residential adviser of the Searcy House Plan, now known as the Stephens Scholars.

The awards ceremony allows the College’s Senior Staff to honor those who have made significant contributions, but administrators stressed that the luncheon aimed to recognize all employees for their service to Stephens.

“While we give out awards for specific achievements, this luncheon is really about celebrating everyone’s contributions,” said Kim Schellenberger, director of Human Resources.

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