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MTSU salutes nearly 270 employees for ‘foundation’...

MTSU salutes nearly 270 employees for ‘foundation’ of more than 5,000 combined years of service [+VIDEO]

Middle Tennessee State University honored almost 270 faculty and staff members campuswide for their years of working with and for students at the annual Employee Service Awards, held Dec. 3 for the first time as a virtual event.

This is the digital flyer for MTSU’s 2020 Employee Service Awards virtual ceremony, held Thursday, Dec., 3, to honor 269 employees for a combined 5,130 years of service to the university.

This is the digital flyer for MTSU’s 2020 Employee Service Awards virtual ceremony, held Thursday, Dec., 3, to honor 269 employees for a combined 5,130 years of service to the university. Click on the image to see a larger version.

Every year the university recognizes employees with a decade or more of service at a special lunch and ceremony, where they receive pins and/or plaques saluting their work with MTSU and the state of Tennessee.

The pandemic forced the in-person event’s cancelation for this year’s 269 honorees, however. The university held two of its three Class of 2020 commencements virtually before conducting its fall graduation ceremonies outdoors, masked and socially distanced, last month.

“We hope that in 2021 we will be able to once again hold the ceremony in person,” said Kathy Musselman, the university’s assistant vice president for human resource services.

“What I will miss today is hearing the sounds of conversation between colleagues, the laughter, and most of all the pause for pictures being made by colleagues who are not sure how to operate their camera on their phone.”

Some of those employees certainly couldn’t snap photos with their phones, or even carry them in jacket or pants pockets, when they started at MTSU.

Professors Ron Aday and Bichaka Fayissa, this year’s longest-serving employees with 40 years each of teaching, joined the university in 1980, three years before the first analog, bricklike, mobile phone was introduced in America.

Aday, a professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology in MTSU’s College of Liberal Arts, has brought students and the community into his continuing research on the needs of the aging population by combining sociology and gerontology in multiple areas, including aging prisoners, elder abuse, intergenerational friendships, and the work of senior centers.

Dr. Ron Aday

Dr. Ron Aday

Dr. Bichaka Fayissa, Department of Economics and Finance, Jones College of Business

Dr. Bichaka Fayissa

He established and directed MTSU’s interdisciplinary Aging Studies Program for 25 years and has won the university’s Distinguished Research Award, along with the top honor, the Career Achievement Award, for his work.

Fayissa, who joined the Department of Economics and Finance in the Jones College of Business that same year, has focused his scholarly work on economic development, technology and growth, particularly in Africa, including the prominence of tourism and the plan to diversify industries. He too has received MTSU’s top award for faculty research and is also the recipient of the university’s Outstanding Public Service Award.

The professor also is a former coordinator for MTSU’s Inroads Program, which identified and worked with talented young minority students to help get them into college, graduate and develop management careers in corporations across America.

The professors and their MTSU colleagues recognized at the 2020 event have provided a combined total of 5,130 years of service to the university, which MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee called “very special.”

“You are part of the foundation we have to have built this institution into a world-class university,” McPhee said during the virtual ceremony.

“You’ve done a wonderful job serving our students and our visitors that come to this campus, and I want you to know that the first lady (Elizabeth McPhee) and I deeply, deeply appreciate your many, many years of service to MTSU.”

TrueBlueTV-logo-webThe ceremony is available to watch on YouTube above. The university also will rebroadcast the 2020 Service Awards on its True Blue TV educational resource channel and website Friday, Dec. 4, at 8 p.m. Central; Saturday, Dec. 5, at 3 p.m.; Sunday, Dec. 6, at 9 p.m.; and Tuesday, Dec. 8, at 9:30 p.m.

True Blue TV is available at http://mtsu.edu/TrueBlueTV and airs on channel 9.1 on the MTSU campus; channel 99 on AT&T U-verse in Middle Tennessee; Comcast Xfinity channels 9 and 1096; channel 195 on DTC in Alexandria, Tennessee; and digital channel 206 on United Communications in Chapel Hill, Tennessee.

The station also is available on Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV; those details are available at the True Blue TV website.

The 2020 honorees and their departments include:

10 years of service:

Lynn Adams, Office of Alumni Relations.
Elliot Altman, Department of Biology.
Gwen Barrett, Human Resource Services.
Brad Bartel, Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
Andrew Bennett, University Police Department.
Jimmy Borendame, MTSU Athletics.
Eddie Bowen, Department of Media Arts.
Debra Boyd, Department of Communication Studies.
Kim Brewton, MTSU Athletics.
Matthew Brown, Department of English.
Ethan Castelo, Department of English.
Charles Chusuei, Department of Chemistry.
John Coons, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Stephen Decker, Department of Communication Studies.
Kira Duke, Center for Historic Preservation.
Sasha Fallon, Department of Social Work.
Michelle Finch, School of Nursing.
Anne Ford, MT One Stop.
Mark Frame, Department of Psychology.
Phillip Harvey, University Housing and Residential Life (retired).
Frances Henderson, Department of English.
Jack Head, Information Technology Division.
Diana Hill, Womack Educational Leadership Department.
Denise Holt, University Housing and Residential Life.
Kara Hooper, Creative Marketing Solutions.
Kyle Kennedy, Department of Theatre and Dance.
James Kentfield, MTSU Ticket Office.
Seth Marshall, Department of Psychology.
Jolynda Maynard, Parking and Transportation Services.
Mary McClain, Office of the President.
Kevin McNulty, Department of Media Arts.
Shelley Moore, School of Nursing.
Lisa Murphree, School of Nursing.
Arunesh Nadgir, School of Music.
Greg Nagel, Department of Economics and Finance.
Tara Hayes Odette, Office of the Vice Provost for Research.
Andrew Oppmann, Division of Marketing and Communications.
Marie Patterson, College of Behavioral and Health Sciences.
Bruce Petryshak, Information Technology Division.
Kristi Plunk, School of Nursing.
Susan Quinn, University Business Office.
Betty Rinaudo, University College.
Drew Ruble, University Publications.
Megan Russell, University College.
Kim Sandman, Department of Aerospace.
Lana Seivers, College of Education (retired).
Kristi Shamburger, Department of Theatre and Dance.
Leslie Shearon, Student Health Services.
Xiaowei Shi, Department of Communication Studies.
John Shires, Department of Chemistry.
Rebecca Shults, Home and Community Based Early Intervention Program.
Tammy Simmons, Home and Community Based Early Intervention Program.
Sheri Simon, Tennessee Livestock Center.
Carter Smith, Department of Criminal Justice Administration.
Stephanie Steiner, Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
L’Oreal Stephens, Department of Communication Studies.
Chris Strickland, Energy Services Department.
Lisa Throneberry, Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.
Armando Tobar, University Housing and Residential Life.
Jennifer Vannatta-Hall, School of Music.
Deborah Wagnon, Department of Recording Industry.
Shannon Walker, Department of Psychology.
John Wallin, College of Basic and Applied Sciences.
Laura White, Department of English.
Stephen White, Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.
Heidi Zimmerman, Office of the University Counsel.
Chris Zumbro, Energy Services Department.

15 years of service:

Mohammed Albakry, Department of English.
Cynthia Allen, Environmental Health and Safety.
Watson Ambruster, Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures.
Erin Anfinson, Department of Art and Design.
Wendy Beckman, Department of Aerospace.
Alan Brown, Department of Geosciences.
Nate Callender, Department of Aerospace.
Chad Carter, Department of Economics and Finance.
Frank Cathey, Grounds and Greenhouse Services Department.
Bev Clanton, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Randy Clark, Department of Marketing.
Laura Collins, Department of Geosciences.
Melanie Collins, Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.
Becky Davidson, Ann Campbell Early Learning Center (retired).
Monica Davis, Department of Accounting.
Libby DeMarco, Counseling and Testing Services.
Mary Evins, University Honors College.
Mark Fisher, Energy Services Department.
Martin Fisher, Center for Popular Music.
Missy Gray, Student Health Services.
Scott Handy, Department of Chemistry.
Melissa Hawkins, College of Business.
Shannon Chappell Hodge, Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
Don Hong, Department of Mathematical Sciences.
Jarrod Houghton, Department of Art and Design.
Rick Insell, MTSU Athletics.
Abdul Khaliq, Department of Mathematical Sciences.
Zaf Khan, Department of Elementary and Special Education.
Marcus Knight, School of Concrete and Construction Management.
Will Leggett, Department of Sociology and Anthropology.
Chris Massaro, MTSU Athletics.
Lisa McCann, College of Media and Entertainment.
Jeff McConnell, Environmental Health and Safety.
Susan McConnell, Student Health Services.
Allison McGoffin, Office of the University Provost.
Leighann McInnis, School of Nursing.
Jamila McWhirter, School of Music.
MTSU Human Resource Services logoEric Miller, Telecommunication Services Department.
Nancy Miller, College of Basic and Applied Sciences.
Karen Moser, University Business Office.
Cassie Mullins, Information Technology Division.
Chad Mullis, Information Technology Division.
Robert Patterson, Office of Admissions, Undergraduate Recruitment.
Karen Petersen, College of Liberal Arts.
Sandra Poirier, Department of Human Sciences.
Brian Ratliff, Information Technology Division.
Mischa Renfroe, Department of English.
Robyn Ridgley, Department of Elementary and Special Education.
Amanda Rogers, Environmental Health and Safety.
Lauren Rudd, Department of Human Sciences.
Drew Shea, MTSU Athletics.
Mary Ellen Sloane, James E. Walker Library.
Raj Srivastava, Department of Marketing.
Pamela Steiner, University Housing and Residential Life.
Rick Stockstill, MTSU Athletics.
Keith Stokes, University Business Office.
Tommy Summers, Energy Services Department.
James Taylor, MT One Stop.
Angela Todd, University Police Department.
Theresa Toy, Parking and Transportation Services (retired).
Charlene Jewell True, Womack Educational Leadership Department.
Eddie Vanhook, School of Concrete and Construction Management.
Sally Victory, School of Concrete and Construction Management.
Melissa Wald, Department of Recording Industry.
Eli “Ty” Whitaker, Division of Marketing and Communications.
Zhifu Yang, School of Concrete and Construction Management.
Teena Young, College of Business.

20 years of service:

Joseph Akins, Department of Recording Industry.
Mike Alleyne, Department of Recording Industry.
Lisa Batey, Human Resource Services.
Vickie Brown, Custodial Services Department.
Layne Bryant, University College.
Amy Burks, Information Technology Division.
Ralph Butler, Department of Computer Science.
Toni Butler-Click, James E. Walker Library.
Jenn Caputo, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Terri Carlton, Construction/Renovation Services Department.
Rick Chapman, Student Health Services.
Jun Da, Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures.
Pamela Davis, Department of Political Science and International Relations.
Jackie Dowdy, James E. Walker Library.
Kevin Downs, Department of Agriculture.
Matt Elrod-Erickson, Department of Biology.
Richard Farley, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Stuart Fowler, Department of Economics and Finance.
Valerie Hackworth, James E. Walker Library.
Emily Harper, Telecommunication Services Department.
Carol Hayes, University College.
Tom Heine, Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures.
Steven James, Center for Educational Media.
Bob Kalwinsky, Department of Media Arts.
Maria Edlin King, Center for Economic Education.
Andrei Korobkov, Department of Political Science and International Relations.
Jeff Leblond, Department of Biology.
Deanna Little, School of Music.
Amy Macy, Department of Recording Industry.
Anne Maples-Vaught, Department of Campus Planning.
Lori McClure-Wade, Department of English.
Kristine McCusker, Department of History.
Deborah Mistron, Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures (retired).
Franck Mukendi, Information Technology Division.
Tim Musselman, School of Music.
Willie Nance, Building Services Department.
Melissa O’Grady, James E. Walker Library.
Andrea Christine Parton, Office of Admissions, Undergraduate Recruitment.
John Patterson, Information Technology Division.
Don Roy, Department of Marketing.
Scott Seipel, Department of Information Systems and Analytics.
Lynn Sewak, Office of the University Provost.
Henry Short, Engineering Services Department.
Donald Snead, Womack Educational Leadership Department.
Pudji Sutarso, Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Planning and Research.
Jason Tanner, School of Agriculture Farm Laboratory.
Rick Taylor, Department of Engineering Technology.
Antoinette Van Zelm, Center for Historic Preservation.
Randy Weiler, Office of News and Media Relations.
Scott Whaley, Parking and Transportation Services.

25 years of service:

Yvette Batts, Environmental Health and Safety.
Debra Boyce, Department of Campus Planning.
Daniel Boyer, School of Agriculture Farm Laboratory.
Michelle Boyer-Pennington, Department of Psychology.
Wendy Brown, Human Resource Services.
Yuan-Ling Chao, Department of History.
Cynthia Cooper, Office of Admissions, Undergraduate Recruitment.
Tony Farone, Department of Biology.
Becky Fischer, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Patrick Geho, Tennessee Small Business Development Center.
Connie Hagberg, Facilities Services Department.
Carla Hatfield, Department of University Studies.
Doug Hill, Warehouse Services Department.
Rebecca Johnson, Event Coordination Department.
Tony Johnston, School of Agriculture.
Beverly Keel, College of Media and Entertainment.
Rick Kurtz, James E. Walker Library.
Jid Lee, Department of English.
Dennis McBee, University Post Office.
Karen Milstead, Human Resource Services.
Scott McDaniel, Department of University Studies.
Gina Poole, School of Nursing.
William Robertson, Department of Physics and Astronomy.
Carol Rozell, University Business Office.
Dawn Shelar, Department of Health and Human Performance.
Bill Stewart, Department of Biology.
Matt Taylor, Department of Aerospace.
Mimi Thomas, College of Basic and Applied Sciences.
Matthew Wade, School of Agriculture Farm Laboratory.
Karen Ward, School of Nursing (retired).
Ray Wiley, MTSU Campus Recreation.
Karen Marie Wolfe, Department of Geosciences.
Brenda Wunder, Facilities Services Department.

30 years of service:

Rajesh Aggarwal, Department of Information Systems and Analytics.
Lisa Batey, Human Resource Services.
Suzanne Beller, Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.
Tom Brinthaupt, Department of Psychology.
Chong Chen, Department of Engineering Technology.
Janet Colson, Department of Human Sciences.
Carlos Coronel, College of Business, Information Technology Resource Services.
Mamit Deme, Department of Economics and Finance.
Ellen Donovan, Department of English.
David Dunaway, Building Services Department.
Tony Eff, Department of Economics and Finance.
Susan England, Office of Budget and Financial Planning.
Ginger Freeman, Office of Alumni Relations.
Mike Hein, Department of Psychology.
Allen Hibbard, Department of English.
Michelle Higdon, Department of Computer Science.
Michael Hinz, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies.
Terry Logan, Environmental Health and Safety.
Annette Merriman, Information Technology Division.
Sherry Mitchell, James E. Walker Library.
Jean Nagy, Department of Art and Design.
Michael Neth, Department of English.
Deborah Newman, Department of Criminal Justice Administration.
Sheila Otto, Department of English.
Marvin Peyton, Womack Educational Leadership Department.
Chris Piety, Information Technology Division.
Jack Purcell, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies.
Kelvin Rankins, Creative Marketing Solutions.
David Senior, Telecommunication Services Department.
William Shulman, Department of Criminal Justice Administration.
Zack Sinkala, Department of Mathematical Sciences.
Moses Tesi, Department of Political Science and International Relations.
Terri Tharp, Department of Elementary and Special Education (retired).
Kathy Thurman, University Business Office.
Judy Van Hein, Department of Psychology.
Derek Vincion, Department of Receiving and Moving Services.
Raholanda White, Department of Marketing.
Jan Worley, MTSU Athletics.

35 years of service:

Vivian Alley, Department of University Studies.
Jill Austin, Department of Management.
Gayle Barker, Human Resource Services.
Raphael Bundage, School of Music.
Jackie Eller, Department of Sociology and Anthropology (retired).
Zona Frazier, MTSU Child Care Lab (retired).
Linda Jordan, Facilities Services Department.
David Kelly, Department of Psychology (retired).
Donnie Murray, University Post Office.
Lisa Rogers, Information Technology Division.
Vince Smith, Department of Marketing (retired).
Carroll Van West, Department of Center for Historic Preservation.

MTSU, which employs more than 2,500 faculty and staff members campuswide, honors its employees regularly with opportunities that include the MTSU Employee Recognition Program for administrators, classified and technical/service personnel and the MTSU Foundation Awards and Faculty Recognition presentations for faculty.

For more information about MTSU employee recognition programs, visit the university’s Human Resource Services department at www.mtsu.edu/hrs.

— Gina E. Fann (gina.fann@mtsu.edu)


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