Model employees set tone for University

The first Models of Excellence awards ceremony, at the Annenberg Center’s Zellerbach Theatre May 8, was one of those rare campus events where the ceremony upstaged the food at the reception afterwards.

About 400 people — honorees, family and friends, supervisors, nominees, faculty and staff — saw a production worthy of the Oscars, including a video montage of Penn notables (none named Franklin) set to a thunderous musical score and congratulations to all from Vice President for Human Resources Jack Heuer and President Judith Rodin.

Rodin herself handed out huge crystal etchings of College Hall to each of the winners, who were introduced by Provost Robert Barchi, and more modest ones to the honorable mentions, introduced by Executive Vice President John Fry. Those of the 145 nominees in attendance were also asked to stand.

The individual winners of this year’s awards, given to recognize service that goes above and beyond the requirements of the job to advance the University’s mission, are:

Siddharth M. Deliwala, manager of the Instructional Laboratory of the Electrical Engineering Department, for work contributing to the creation of a first-rate electronics instruction library;

Katherine Lowe-Becht, house dean of Ware College House, for exemplary work in creating a mentoring/tutoring program for freshmen in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences; and

Kurt Conklin, health educator, Office of Health Education, for leadership in developing courses that address campus health issues (see “Staff Q&A”).

In addition, eight employees each received awards as part of teams.

Scholars’ helpers

For extraordinary help and support for students in the Benjamin Franklin Scholars and University Scholars programs:

Linda Wiedmann, associate director, Benjamin Franklin Scholars and General Honors;

Cheryl Shipman, administrative assistant, Benjamin Franklin Scholars and General Honors; and

Susan Z. Duggan, coordinator, University Scholars.

PennCares group

For work leading to the growth and success of the PennCares alumni community service program:

Ellen Liebman, assistant director of the Global Alumni Network and coordinator for Alumni Relations Computer Services;

Jennifer Rizzi, assistant director for classes and reunions and assistant director of the University of Pennsylvania Alumni Society; and

Joel Nied, volunteer leader and associate in the law firm Morgan, Lewis and Bockius.

Museum Web site

For their work in developing an internationally recognized Web site for the University of Pennsylvania Museum:

Suzanne Clappier and Ray Rorke, information technology support specialists.

In addition to the sculptures, each of the winners received a $500 cash prize. Honorable mentions received $250 cash prizes; a complete list of the honorable mention winners can be found at on the Web.

Originally published on May 18, 2000