UM Employee Recognition Event Slated for March 27

March 06, 2015

MISSOULA – The University of Montana has designated Friday, March 27, UM Employee Recognition Day to show appreciation to all employees and to celebrate the impressive contributions they make to the success of the University.

UM Employee Recognition Day will be celebrated throughout campus and will conclude with a reception for all employees from 3 to 5 p.m. in the University Center Ballroom. The theme of this year’s event is “Griz Family Game Night.”

The reception will include game-show-style games, hors d’oeuvres and prize drawings. A number of awards will be given at the reception to honor outstanding faculty and staff. The 2015 recipients follow:

  • Outstanding Teamwork Award: Veterans Education and Transition Services Data Warehouse Team
    • Daniel Bowling, Student Affairs IT
    • Connie Bowman, Financial Aid
    • Ruth Burgad, IT
    • Katherine Dalessio, Missoula College
    • Kerry Hallin, Business Services
    • Camryn Hare, VETS Office
    • Derek Hubbard, Business Services
    • Geoffrey Lake, Business Services
    • Karen Moore, Administration & Finance IT
    • Eric Seyden, Student Affairs IT
  • Academic Administrator Award:  Michael Patterson, associate dean, College of Forestry and Conservation
  • J.B. Speer Award for Distinguished Administrative Service: William Marcus, director, Broadcast Media Center
  • Americans with Disabilities Act Award: Jennifer Schoffer Closson, assistant professor, Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders
  • Distinguished Scholar Award: Eduardo Chirinos, professor of Spanish, Department of Modern & Classical Languages & Literatures
  • Distinguished Service to International Education Award: Sarah Halvorson, professor, Department of Geography
  • Distinguished Teaching Award: Lisa Blank, professor, Department of Curriculum and Instruction
  • Graduate Assistant Teaching Award: Patrick O’Connor, Department of History
  • Montana Faculty Service Award, Steven Gaskill, professor, Department of Health and Human Performance
  • Most Inspirational Teacher of the Year Award: Shawn Clouse, professor, Department of Management Information Systems
  • Nancy Borgmann Diversity Award: Blakely Brown, associate professor, Department of Health & Human Performance
  • Outstanding Faculty Advising Award: Dan Doyle, professor, Department of Sociology
  • Outstanding Mentoring Award: Jeff Wiltse, associate professor, Department of History
  • Outstanding Service to Students Award:  Melanie Hoell, director of advising, College of Humanities and Sciences
  • Outstanding Service to the Campus Community Award: Rita Garland, benefits specialist, Human Resource Services
  • Outstanding Staff Award - Campus Interaction and Meritorious Job Performance: Michael Sweet, research specialist, College of Forestry and Conservation
  • Outstanding Staff Award - Excellence in Job Performance: Janean Clark, administrative associate manager, Division of Biological Sciences

To help UM employees acknowledge colleagues and coworkers who have contributed to their success, the planning committee has created a recognition website that allows employees to send personal messages of appreciation. Messages can be posted online at by clicking the “Send a Message” tab until 5 p.m. Thursday, March 26. They will be delivered to recipients on Employee Recognition Day.

For more ideas about ways to recognize the valuable contributions of employees, colleagues and coworkers, visit

Contact: Jed Liston, UM Employee Recognition Day Committee co-chair, 406-243-2361,; Sheila Wright, UM Employee Recognition Day Committee co-chair, 406-243-4225,