Outstanding Administrative/Professional Staff

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Harvey Henson Staff Excellence

2014: Harvey Henson, Jr., the assistant dean for recruitment, retention and outreach in the College of Science, impacts SIU students through outreach with Living Learning Communities, the popular Saluki Science Ambassadors and science educators throughout the region, writes Laurie A. Achenbach, interim dean of the College of Science.  He has mentored more than 350 student leaders and undergraduate researchers with Saluki Science Ambassadors since 2009 and 300 science students in science learning communities since 2008.

Henson has more than 27 years with the university, beginning as a research project specialist in 1986 to help establish the seismology research program in the Department of Geology.  In 2001, Henson became an instructor in geosciences and in 2007, co-director and instructor in the science and math teacher (SMART) graduate program in the College of Science and College of Education and Human Services.  Henson became an assistant dean in 2008.  Since becoming an assistant dean, Henson is the principal investigator or co-principal investigator in outreach grants totaling more than $8 million.

“All of these activities lie outside his specific job responsibilities,” Achenbach writes.  “Harvey does all of the grant-funded outreach not because he has to, but because he wants to.”

Stephen Esling, geology department chair, writes that Henson’s educational outreach programs result in many students entering SIU as science majors and notes that everyone who works in science education in the region “knows Harvey and what he does.”

“It is a true joy to watch Harvey interact with students and all educational levels. You can see the passion he has for learning and how he reaches out to that reluctant student to show him or her just how exciting science can be,” Esling writes.

Zenetta McDaniel Coleman

2014: Zenetta McDaniel Coleman, associate director of the University Honors Program, is actively engaged with faculty, staff and students, and her commitment to SIU students goes “far beyond expectations outlined in any job description,” writes nominator Carolin Harvey.

A two-degree SIU graduate and Carbondale native, Coleman, affectionately known as “Mama Z,” mentors students, has advised several registered student organizations, and established two private scholarships in memory of her grandparents, three of whom retired from the university.  Harvey, an accountant in the registrar’s office, writes that she first met Coleman when she hired her as a graduate student for her office nearly 20 years ago.

Coleman’s “natural affinity” for students developed while working as a Chicago-based admissions counselor and recruiter for SIU from 1997 to 1999, Harvey writes.

Coleman has a desire to increase the diversity of student and faculty membership in the University Honors program to reflect the diversity on campus, and through active and intentional recruitment, diversity in the program has risen from 10 to 35 percent in just over three years, Harvey writes.  Coleman is a university associate for the honors program’s Living Learning Community (LLC), taught a University College 101 class and served on numerous search committees.  She is vice president of the black staff and faculty council and the administrative/professional council’s judicial review committee.

Coleman is president of the African American Museum of Southern Illinois and also serves as a family action network committee member for Special Olympics Illinois.

Rosemary Simmons

2013: Rosemary E. Simmons, director of the SIU Counseling Center, “embodies the culture she has created of excellence, acceptance and integrity,” writes Jaime Clark, the Center’s assistant director and director of training.  Among Simmons’ numerous qualities is she is “passionate about student welfare, promotes inclusive excellence” and is “tireless in striving for an equitable campus environment,” Clark states.

Simmons has more than 25 years experience at the Counseling Center in a number of capacities, including serving as director since 2006.  Prior to coming to SIU Carbondale, Simmons’ experience included working as a crisis counselor for the Jackson County Mental Health Center, a sexual assault crisis counselor at the Women’s Center, and victim’s advocate with SIU Carbondale’s Women’s Services.  She earned the University’s Administrative/Professional Women of Distinction Award presented by University Women’s Professional Advancement in 2004.

In addition to overseeing a staff that includes eight doctorate-level psychologists, two licensed clinical social workers, six pre-doctoral interns, 13 practicum students and three civil service professionals, Simmons does individual and group therapy, supervises graduate students, serves on numerous campus committees and presents workshops and community intervention projects.  Clark writes Simmons created programs, such as a full Dialectical Behavioral Therapy model, which differentiates “SIU from other excellent counseling centers across the country,” and “specializes in treatment of trauma, student supervision, diversity and social justice programming, crisis intervention and threat assessment.”

Frank Kosmicki, chief psychologist at the Counseling Center, writes Simmons is frequently a first-responder during crises or emergencies, meeting with students, staff, faculty and parents at the counseling center, residence halls, the hospital, or wherever needed.   Even with the responsibilities and working long hours, Simmons’ “optimism and positive attitude are infectious, and much of the character of the Counseling Center can be attributed to her personality,” Kosmicki writes.

Jack R. Musgrave

2012: Jack R. Musgrave, interim director of the Evaluation and Developmental Center, is "a consummate professional, and as a role model for students, sets an excellent example through his extensive vocational rehabilitation knowledge and hard work," writes Carl R. Flowers, professor and acting director of the Rehabilitation Institute in the College of Education and Human Services.

Don Castle

2011: Don Castle, assistant director of the Student Center, for his outstanding contributions to the facility's central role in the life the University's students. The award is part of SIUC's annual Excellence Through Commitment Awards program, which highlights top achievers at the University.

Carol L. Westerman-Jones

2010: Carol Westerman-Jones is an academic adviser for the Department of Cinema & Photography in the College of Mass Communication & Media Arts. She joined the University in 1993 as an admissions and records officer with academic support programs. She has been in her current position since 1997. Westerman-Jones, of Carbondale, earned a bachelors degree in art and a masters degree in cinema and photograph at SIUC in 1992 and 1997, respectively.

John S. Mead

2009: John S. Mead has served as director of the Coal Extraction and Utilization Research Center since 1989. In that position, he oversees the operation and strategic direction of the center, including specialized development facilities. Also associate dean of the graduate school, Mead promotes SIUC nationally and internationally as a leader in coal research while providing expertise to private and public organizations. He also helped Illinois attract the federal FutureGen project to Mattoon.

Carmen Suarez

2008: Carmen Suarez is the director of the Office of Diversity and Equity. A member of the Universitys staff since 1990, her previous roles included serving as coordinator of the Office of Diversity and Equity, interim assistant vice chancellor for enrollment management, assistant dean of the School of Law Career Services, Hispanic community liaison and affirmative action officer. She earned her bachelor's degree in history, her master's degree in medieval history with a minor concentration in ancient history and her doctorate in philosophy at SIUC.

Philip S. Gatton

2007: Philip S. Gatton (right), director of Plant & Service Operations.

Paulette Curkin

2006: Paulette Curkin, coordinator, Student Development

Lois Strom

2005: Lois Strom, assistant to the chairman, Department of Surgery, School of Medicine- Springfield

2003-2004 class="do-not-resize"> Kevin Bame, director, Accounting Services

Brent D. Patton

2002: Brent D. Patton, associate director, Plant & Service Operations

Barbara Elam

2001: Barbara Elam, coordinator, Wellness Center

Keith McQuarrie

2000: Keith McQuarrie, academic adviser, Information Management Systems

Connie Shanahan

1999: Connie Shanahan, research project specialist, Research Development and Administration

Linda Benz

1998: Linda Benz, project coordinator, Institutional Research and Studies

Gary Drake

1997: Gary Drake, director, SIU Arena

John Corker1996: John Corker, instructor, food and nutrition

James Osberg1995: James Osberg, director of International Economic Development, Office of Economic and Regional Development

Candis Isberner1994: Candis Isberner, director, Office of TV Learning Services, Broadcasting Service

J. Thomas Williams1993: J. Thomas Williams, assistant dean for administration, School of Medicine

Carolyn Donow1992: Carolyn Donow, research project specialist, Research Development and Administration

Philip Lindberg1991: Philip Lindberg, director, Touch of Nature

Jeanne Dorsett1990: Jeanne Dorsett, researcher II, School of Medicine-Carbondale

Thomas Purcell1989: Thomas Purcell, associate director, Institutional Research and Studies

Andrew Marcec1988: Andrew Marcec, conference coordinator, Continuing Education

James Scales1987: James Scales, counseling psychologist, Career Development Center

Charlotte West1986: Charlotte West, director, Womens Intercollegiate Athletics

Roland Keim1985: Roland Keim, associate director, Admissions and Records

Joe Yusko1984: Joe Yusko, Personnel Services

Thurman Lee Brooks1983: Thurman Lee Brooks, assistant to the vice president for campus services

Billie Jacobini1982: Billie Jacobini, chief academic adviser, General Academic Programs

All information was current at the time of the award.