Annual Andy Awards honor staff

Steve Audia, winner of the 2011 Andy Award for innovation, tests out his research with Wii controllers. (credit: Courtesy of Chariman of the Joints Chief of Staff on Flickr) Steve Audia, winner of the 2011 Andy Award for innovation, tests out his research with Wii controllers. (credit: Courtesy of Chariman of the Joints Chief of Staff on Flickr)

The 17th annual Andy Awards celebrated the achievements of the Carnegie Mellon staff in McConomy Auditorium last Friday.

Every year, the awards are presented to staff members and teams who have shown outstanding performance in any of six categories: dedication, innovation, commitment to students, university citizenship, culture, and community contributions. “The staff has so much to do with everything that happens at this university. It’s not too much to say that we are what we are because of our staff. We are all very grateful for all that you do,” President Jared Cohon said at the ceremony.

This year’s awards were presented to Amy Wells for dedication, Renee Camerlengo for commitment to students, Steve Audia for innovation, Madelyn Miller for culture, John Lanyon for university citizenship, and Stanley Krowitz for community contributions.

Amy Wells works in the history department, Renee Camerlengo is the assistant dean of Student Affairs, Steve Audia is the Entertainment Technology Center’s technology manager, Madelyn Miller is the director of Environment Health and Safety, John Lanyon is the tutor coordinator of Academic Development, and Stanley Krowitz is in the University Center’s administration.

The community contributions category was added this year to recognize people who are not faculty but have greatly contributed to the campus community, according to Victoria Bushmire, the university events coordinator.

“Its goal is to recognize the people who are in the shadows, maybe the person who serves lunch in the Schatz Dining Room or maybe the person who sweeps the floors of our labs or classrooms — someone who isn’t often recognized, someone who kind of stays behind the scenes,” she said.

Nominees for the awards can be any staff member of the university. This year 39 members of the staff were nominated, including 20 individuals and three teams. To be nominated, staff members must show dedication to their jobs, provide guidance and assistance to students, demonstrate creativity and imagination in finding solutions, build a positive and supportive work environment, foster cooperation and collaboration between the university and its constituents, or benefit the campus community in some other significant way.

Awards were also presented to staff members celebrating 30, 35, and 40 years of service. These were presented to Charlotte Bartosh, Joan Maser, and Virgil Simplaceanu for 30 years of service; to Winifred Rossmont for 35 years of service; and to Marjorie Farinelli for 40 years of service.

“University-wide, [the Andy Awards] are the biggest thing as far as personal recognition,” said Ron Ripper, lab manager for the department of civil and environmental engineering and nominee for the outstanding commitment to students award.

“Winning would be great, but the fact of [my department head] putting me up there is really enough on a professional level,” Ripper said prior to the ceremony. “I come from private industry that didn’t do anything like this at all.”

“I think the staff get really excited each year,” Bushmire said. “[The awards] boost morale, and everyone’s really proud on the day of the Andy Awards. They’re really proud to be a part of this university.”