The University Record, November 9, 1992

Five staff honored for ‘indispensable contributions’

By Mary Jo Frank

Five staff members will be honored at the first Distinguished Staff Award ceremony and dinner Thursday (Nov. 12) in the Kalamazoo Room of the Michigan League.

Those to be honored for unusual and exemplary service to the University and for outstanding achievements in their work are Cynthia A. Kabza, manager of employment and staff planning in the Administrative Services Personnel Service Center; James A. “Buck” Marks, supervisor of waste management and recycling in Grounds and Waste Management Services; David C. Norton, senior engineer in Facilities Planning and Design; Frank E. Sell, custodian II in Plant Building Services; and Philip A. Smith, manager of employment and staff development in the Schools, Colleges, Institutes and Libraries (SCIL) Personnel Service Center.

The Distinguished Staff Award, to be given annually, includes a plaque and a cash award. It is designed to recognize “the indispensable contribution that staff make to the University’s success, and to support and reward outstanding efforts on the part of individual staff members,” according to Farris W. Womack, vice president and chief financial officer.

Kabza, who was nominated by Vice President for Student Affairs Maureen A. Hartford, has been a University employee for 17 years.

Kabza has “provided tremendous assistance to new employees in relocation and orientation to the University,” Hartford said. “Her attitude has been ‘Of course, we can help.’ Red tape does not seem to keep her from accomplishing what a new employee needs.”

Kabza plans and manages recruitment, selection, placement and forecasting of University staffing needs and temporary staffing services. She serves on a task force to implement JobNet, the University’s automated employment system; on the Business and Finance Diversity Task Force; and on the College and University Personnel Association Board as national adviser for employment.

Marks, who has been with the U-M for three years, was nominated by Richard R. Steiner, assistant manager of the Plant Business Office.

Marks coordinates waste collection activities and has spearheaded bid and contract specifications for refuse disposal and recycling processing. With the Grounds and Waste Management staff, Marks has built the University’s recycling program from the ground up. Marks’ close examination and monitoring of the refuse operation resulted in savings of more than $100,000 in the first half of fiscal 1992.

Norton, a University employee for six years, was nominated by Medical School Dean Giles G. Bole Jr. Norton provides outstanding leadership in the analysis of many complex engineering problems, and has coordinated the work of consultants on numerous investigations and has contributed to the design of many projects.

Norton was selected to lead an effort to conduct a facilities survey project to establish a 20-year forecast of major capital expenditures. The high quality of this project, Bole said, has prompted use by other universities as a benchmark and the University is marketing it.

Sell has demonstrated ongoing excellence in the performance of custodial work for 24 years, according to his supervisor, Thomas J. O’Brien, who nominated him.

O’Brien says Sell is always willing to handle special cleaning projects to improve the appearance of University buildings.

“His knowledge of procedures and his conscientious effort in their application makes him one of the key people in the success of our unit,” O’Brien adds.

An example of Sell’s commitment to the University, O’Brien says, is the fact that he has been absent due to illness only six times in the past 15 years.

Smith, who recently celebrated his 20th anniversary with the University, was nominated by Judith D. Roper, School of Business Administration human resource manager, and his supervisor, Bernadette Malinoski, assistant director of personnel, SCIL Personnel Service Center.

Smith is an individual of great personal integrity who consistently treats people and their ideas with respect, according to Malinoski.

Roper and Malinoski noted that Smith has built solid working relationships with academic and research units and initiated a pilot program to develop a closer shared working relationship with the School of Business Administration.

Smith has been a member of the JobNet task force, he has implemented changes in the reduction-in-force policy and has planned for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and changes in immigration laws.