The Brown University News Bureau
Distributed Mau 7, 1998
Contact: Tracie Sweeney
Ten `Brown Says Thank You!' awards presented at awards breakfast
Ten members of Brown University's support staff received Brown Says Thank You!
awards for the innovation, initiative, service and personal commitment they
have demonstrated in their work. The awards were presented at the University's
annual staff appreciation breakfast May 7.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Brown University honored 10 employees with Brown Says
Thank You! awards on Thursday, May 7. Chosen from more than 60 nominees, the 10
winners were honored for the innovation, initiative, service and personal
commitment they have demonstrated in their work at Brown.
The awards were presented by Brown University President E. Gordon Gee during
the Brown Says Thank You! breakfast May 7, held annually to recognize the
contributions and quality work performed by the University's support staff.
- Muriel Bessette, Rumford, senior academic secretary, sociology. Bessette is
responsible for the department's graduate student program. "Her interactions
with students and prospective candidates have been wonderfully warm,
supportive, encouraging and professional - always going beyond the regular
aspects of her job. Having undergone surgery on Commencement weekend a few
years ago, her concern for the graduating students was so great, she called
from the hospital to make certain everything was all set."
- Patricia Bianco, Warwick, senior administrative secretary, psychological
services. Bianco "embodies everything we value in a Brown employee. She has
been described as proactive, productive, dedicated and loyal. Work is more than
a job for Pat. It's an extension of who she is - a caring and concerned member
of this community who exemplifies the meaning of service. She has calmed upset
parents and students in crisis, directing them through the system with patience
- Philip Bucci, Cranston, check-in attendant, athletics. Bucci "is the first
person you meet entering the Olney Margolis Athletic Center. He carefully
attends to each person's needs with grace, humor and just plain kindness. As
one parent stated as he visited the Brown campus with his daughter, `If my
daughter is fortunate enough to attend Brown, she is applying largely due to
Phil's enthusiasm.' "
- Denise Capoverde, Providence, administrative office assistant, athletics.
When Capoverde was nominated, she worked in food services, where she was
primarily responsible for payroll. She "managed timecards of the 120 hourly
employees, 400 student workers and another 100 temporary workers, while
tracking sick time, vacation time, medical forms and I-9 forms. In addition,
she answered the non-stop phones and greeted walk-in customers. She did this
every day with patience and competence while maintaining a cheerful
disposition. Her team spirit and genuine caring for others is the very essence
- John Danenberg, Portsmouth, operations coordinator, ADIR-computing
services. Danenberg's "positive attitude and personal commitment to Brown make
him enjoyable to work with and a valuable team member. He quietly goes about
putting in extra effort to help others succeed at their jobs and is always
cheerfully ready to help with expected and unexpected problems. He will always
resolve a problem with a thought to your best interest, not what is easiest or
best for him."
- Joanna Dumont, Fall River, Mass., administrative assistant, molecular
biology, cell biology and biochemistry. "Highly valued for her competency and
professional skills, Joanna single-handedly organized the admissions process
for almost 200 applicants and the interviewing of 30 candidates for the largest
graduate program in the BioMed Division. Due to her integrity, initiative,
personal commitment and loyalty to Brown, she will have a lasting impact in
improving the quality and efficiency of the admissions process in the future."
- Carlene Fiorito, East Providence, data coordinator, purchasing. Fiorito
"handles an average of 400 requisitions per week in addition to a plethora of
contracts, government forms, quotations, bids and purchase orders. She has
developed a training program for the Financial Record System and
single-handedly trained all users of the on-line purchasing system. In a
department that handles an estimated $89 million in purchases annually, she
looks for new and better ways to simplify the business process."
- Margaret "Peggy" Lippka, Warwick, administrative coordinator, English.
Lippka "is indispensable in one of the English department's most demanding
annual tasks - preparation of copy for the Course Announcement Bulletin. She
has devised systems for helping the department maximize its enrollment
potential. With more than 4,000 enrollments each year, the department is
extremely grateful for her innovations in streamlining this process. Staff
members, students and faculty are all the beneficiaries of her good will."
- Lisa Manekofsky, Cranston, administrative manager, computer science.
Manekofsky "meets the criterion of personal commitment which she demonstrated
during a renewal site visit for the Science and Technology Center. She slipped
down a flight of stairs but concealed her discomfort and maintained a calm
exterior in the face of a stressful situation. It wasn't until later that she
discovered she had torn several tendons in her foot. Her amazing strength of
character, team spirit and loyalty to her job and her co-workers make her an
outstanding representative of Brown."
- Donna Silva, Providence, administrative assistant, BioMed-business affairs.
Silva "deals with all the paperwork related to University payroll processing
and BioMed record-keeping for 500 faculty and staff, 100 graduate students and
225 people on the miscellaneous and student payrolls. Her commitment and
loyalty in dealing with challenging issues inspire admiration. She performs
independently, working extra hours as necessary, putting out fires as they
arise, meeting one impossible deadline after another."