Staff Appreciation Day
Barbara Allier is a trusted, hard-working member of the Department of Health and Nutrition Sciences. As CUNY Administrative Assistant, Level 1, Barbara has served notably as a linchpin over the past several years in our coordination of the master’s in public health program. Barbara can always be relied upon to gather information needed for the department to make key decisions, particularly when the issues involve individual students. She coordinates packets of information received from and returned to the Office of Graduate Admissions. She answers numerous phone calls from students, and she remains cheerful, pleasant, calm, and polite, even when faced with a call from a student with sometimes unreasonable demands. Outside of Brooklyn College, Barbara enjoys traveling and gardening. We hope she pursues these callings in that unknown, beckoning terrain called "retirement."
Patricia Arnold is the senior operator on the campus' telephone switchboard. In an environment where professionalism, pleasantness, and adeptness at instant extension recall is key, Pat exemplifies what it means to be an efficient and highly productive operator. Known as "The Voice of Brooklyn College," her longevity and skill at her job have served Brooklyn College well, as she has mentored many of the current and past operators in achieving a high level of proficiency. Never one to hold back a smile, Pat has the ability to light up a room and charm the grumpiest of individuals. Her ease at making customers feel special is well known, and it serves as an extension of the wonderful and remarkable person she is.
When you think of Peace Officer Curtis Brown, you think of dedication, duty, and family. He has worked most often on the late-night tour, but he often volunteers to work his off shifts, no matter the detail. He does not mind getting his hands dirty and dealing with difficult or problematic situations. Curtis is a single father of three daughters, who were quite young when he began working at Brooklyn College. He sometimes missed their events so that he could better provide for his family, and he did so gladly. Now his daughters have grown into fine women, graduated from college, and gotten married. Curtis says that "in life, things can get complicated," yet he did not give into the complications, and he believes that in the 20 years that he has worked at the college, things have become less complicated. Curtis is a reliable, hardworking, and no-nonsense officer who gets along well with his colleagues and has become an anchor in the office. His continued devotion to the Office of Public Safety and Brooklyn College is an inspiration to his colleagues!
Elisa Burgos has worked in Mailing Services for 20 years. Elisa has played an instrumental part in assisting the college to maintain cost savings via the United States Postal Service presorted mail program since its inception. She makes the effort to ensure that members of the campus community understand postal regulations and goes the extra mile to assist her colleagues. Elisa considers Brooklyn College her second home and loves working here because of her colleagues. She has an infectious laugh and always makes sure that her staff members, whom she treats as family, are happy, especially during peak times.
Martin Escobar works in the Office of Facilities as a custodial assistant and has handled a variety of assignments over the past 20 years. Martin is an important member of the Ingersoll Hall Extension custodial team. He takes pride in his work and has a good working relationship with other custodians, students, and staff. He is known for his million-dollar smile, which lets everyone know that he’s willing and able to help. Martin is also the proud father of twin daughters, one of whom is attending Brooklyn College.
Jean Fogarty joined Brooklyn College in 1993 and worked as a part-time lab aid for the Office of Continuing Education. In 1998, she accepted a civil service appointment with the Office of Adult Degree Programs. After working there for five years, Jean moved on to work for the dean of undergraduate studies. In 2004, she joined the Office of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration, where she continues to work today, providing administrative support to Joe Giovannelli. Giovannelli says that Jean is his "right hand," keeping him from falling apart every day. In addition to being an all-around professional, and enjoying her position at the college, Jean enjoys her family life — she is married and has two sons and four grandsons.
Anita Frank has contributed many years to the functioning of Brooklyn College's library. As a shelver, she has many responsibilities: breaking down carts of books to be returned to the circulation area, ensuring that the library is presentable and tidy for students, and avidly assisting students who need help finding books. She takes the initiative of looking for lost books and books requested by other CUNY schools. Anita is a very happy and positive spirit to be around, and it’s always a pleasure working with her in the library.
Linda Lovisi-Dwyer joined Brooklyn College to work in the Department of Philosophy as a CUNY office assistant in 1995 — and spent the next 20 years in the same department. Linda retired earlier this year with lots of plans for the next phase of her career.
Brooklyn College is a diverse community of various cultures, backgrounds, and religions, and being a peace officer means having to interact with scores of different people and respond appropriately to their individual needs. Officer Rodney Matthews has aptly and continually been one of those officers who meet this challenge, providing students and staff with a sense of safety. Rodney approaches his job in a quiet and pleasant manner but is no pushover; he understands his duties and responsibilities, takes them seriously, and carries them out in a dignified manner. He treats people respectfully, and his demeanor demands respect back — steadfast but not arrogant, reliable and conscientious. Rodney, who is very serious about his religion, places great value on the many friendships with co-workers he has formed over the years. He has always been an engaging and thoughtful officer, and he represents the office well in his interactions with the college community. Though he has worked on the late-night shift for most of his time at the college, it is a welcomed occasion to see him during daylight hours.
As the coordinator for the Honors Academy, Maderie "Pam" Miller is liaison to more than 70 college advisers as part of the academy's recruitment of high-achieving high school students. She is the first line of communication for prospective applicants. Pam also organizes the Peer Mentoring program’s outreach to incoming transfer students. Last year, she personally enrolled 1,289 transfer students into the Transfer Nation program. Pam is also known for keeping a healthy lifestyle, which includes exercising outdoors five to six days a week all year long, regardless of the season, and has no meals after lunch at 2 p.m., four days a week.
Joe Nigro came to Brooklyn College 20 years ago from the Parks Department. He spent his first six years as the university engineer in the Facilities Office of Planning and Construction, managing in-house maintenance and renovations projects and representing the college for CUNY- and DASNY-managed capital projects. In 2002, Joe took his talents and knowledge of the campus infrastructure to Facilities Operations to become the administrative superintendent for the campus central plant and HVAC. Given the size of the campus and the varying age of its buildings, this is a huge and challenging position, but one which he relished and in which he thrived. Besides operating and maintaining the campus heating and cooling infrastructure, Joe has championed many energy-saving initiatives that have saved the college untold energy and money. Joe has also actively participated in and led several campus-wide committees. Of particular note, he co-chaired the Brooklyn College Sustainability Committee and was influential in the creation of the college's 10-year Sustainability Master Plan. Joe's knowledge of how the campus works and its innumerable infrastructure systems is unmatched on this campus. His colleagues are quick to cite his "goodness, kindness, and cheerful concern" and his "deep knowledge of every nook and cranny of the Brooklyn College campus." Joe's knowledge of the physical campus is matched only by his devotion to the people of Brooklyn College.
Roger Philips is an integral member of the custodial team in the Office of Facilities. As a custodial assistant, Roger is assigned to do heavy cleaning in the West End Building and the evening policing of the James Hall public bathrooms. He is known for his skillful work with a floor machine: When you see him glide across the room, you would have to say he dances with the machine with the grace of Fred Astaire. Roger is a loving father and is always proud of his family.
In the Office of Human Resources, Ireen Quercia is the expert concerning college assistants: She manages the appointment and on-boarding process for the steady-state population of more than 1,000 hourly employees. Ireen handles time and leave issues, and she provides technical expertise for E-Appointment to the users in the various departments throughout the college. Her hard work, commitment, and dedication were recognized in 2002 when she was awarded the Employee of the Month Award by former President Christoph Kimmich. Outside of work, Ireen loves to cook and bake. For special occasions she is known to bring all sorts of goodies into the office to share with the staff and visitors alike. Ireen is a loving mother; she has three sons and one daughter who are sure to keep her busy when not at work.
Renee Revan is a college assistant in the Office of Admissions and has had different assignments throughout her tenure at Brooklyn College, first processing mail in the office, then disseminating information to prospective students in the Admissions Information Center, and now processing incoming documents and applications in the Processing Unit. Renee has a friendly, pleasant disposition and works well with students and other staff members. She is always willing to help with office projects, and she assists with Open House and other recruitment events. She is also a trained chef, and her colleagues love the many special treats she brings to office parties.
Jose Salce is the chief college lab technician in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures. His manager has said that it is an honor to know his beloved colleague and friend. As a lab manager, Jose took great care of the lab as if it were his own child. Working with Jose has brought about the realization of how much effort and thought he has put into improving the lab and providing the best service to the students. Students love him! The department is very lucky to have him and appreciates his loyalty and service.
Irina Shor is the friendly, helpful, public face for many of the systems that Information Technology Services (ITS) provides to the campus community. She is not only a capable developer, but has been the key to ensuring that scores of ITS online services are rolled out smoothly, that users receive appropriate training and reassurance, and that the systems are developed based on the community's needs and preferences. The developers in the ITS "back room" depend on her organization, common sense, and people skills to ensure that ITS customers get productive tools that respect the processes they are automating and provide maximum benefit to the end-users and ITS' partner offices. Irina's first child, Dayton, who arrived soon after she began working at the college, now is a member of the Brooklyn College Honors Academy.
Marie Thebaud is a custodial assistant in the Office of Facilities. She is responsible for the maintenance of the second floor of Ingersoll Hall Extension. Marie is known for her positive attitude and demonstrates consistency in the performance of her assigned duties. She is well respected by the college community and is an asset to the custodial team. Marie has two daughters and enjoys spending time with her grandson. Marie also loves to dance, especially salsa!
Carol Tighe is the administrative assistant to the chair in the Department of Kinesiology. The department is run effectively and with efficiency in the capable hands of Carol. Among other duties, she ensures that all adjuncts are paid on time, coordinates with the Athletics Office to juggle gym schedules, and is the chair's right-hand woman. She is a single mother who raised three children, and she has two grandchildren. Carol is an avid reader and always finds time to sit down with a good book!
Edna Lynn Tuzo
Edna Lynn Tuzo is a Brooklyn College alumna. In 1995, she joined the college to work for the Office of Continuing Education on a part-time basis. In 1998, Lynn accepted a civil service appointment in the Wolfe Institute for the Humanities. The following year, she accepted an assignment in Continuing Education to work for the dean. As we all know, highly skilled professionals are always in demand, and in 2010, Lynn was offered an opportunity to join the Office of the Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration, where she reunited with her colleague Jean Fogarty, once again forming a strong administrative team. Lynn has two daughters, a son, and two grandsons. She plans to retire soon and intends to travel and see the world. Senior Vice President Joe Giovannelli says he will miss her professionalism, her graciousness, and, most of all, her calm demeanor.
Claudette Guinn is the coordinator of veterans affairs and counseling, responsible for the administration and implementation of all services provided to veterans, service members, and their dependents, inclusive of providing assistance with the recruitment process. Her specific responsibilities include the administration of all procedures related to the certification and maintenance of eligibility of veterans for benefits in compliance with all Veterans Administration regulations as well as the supervision of the identification, counseling, and advisement of veterans in all phases of their adjustment to the college. Claudette also reaches out to campus and community resources to increase the level of programs, services, and support available to the population that she serves. As described by those who know her, Claudette is great at organizing formal events and schmoozing with the bigwigs, and had a high level of knowledge about holistic health practices before it became fashionable.
Fred Balsam is the stats and numbers guy in the Magner Career Center. Ask him how many jobs were posted in the system or what percentage of students opened the last e-mail, and he knows. What people may not know is that for more than 10,000 days, Fred has traveled 30 hours and 1,000 miles a week to his job at Brooklyn College. During that time, Fred has interacted with an incalculable number of students, alumni, and employers, and the Magner Career Center would not have become what it is today without him. There isn't a career center, in all of CUNY's 24 colleges, that doesn't know his name and value his experience and expertise. Career center staffs often talk about "loving what you do," and Fred is the true embodiment of both that and of dedication to students.
David Best is the ITS computer systems manager and is truly the father of Brooklyn College's networks, e-mail, websites, and so much more. He ably manages systems that underpin almost every activity that occurs on campus and does so without additional resources. His dedication and wide-ranging skillset make him one of ITS's most outstanding and productive employees. David created and maintained one of the most popular websites for people interested in aeronautics. Over his 30-year tenure he has also been collecting an impressive array of computer artifacts that will someday soon be curated into a Brooklyn College IT History exhibition.
Harry Brunken is Brooklyn College's plumber and often has to work with other trades. His excels at his work and, for the past 30 years, has made Brooklyn College an integral part of his life. Harry would give you the shirt off his back, and he has a great sense of humor — if a call came over the walkie-talkie to report a leak, you may hear something like "1-800-FLOOD," and Harry would know the call was for him.
Patricia McCarrick is the administrative assistant for the vice president for enrollment management. Patricia is caring, compassionate, dedicated, generous, and a true treasure to her colleagues, friends, and family (including her dog). In addition to her remarkable talents at Brooklyn College, she is an amazing baker. Her colleagues anxiously await her delicious Irish soda bread every St. Patrick's Day, as well as her holiday cookies, which rival the best of bakeries. Pat is also an animal lover, particularly German shepherd mixes, and she loves giraffes — she can tell you so much about Giraffe Manor in Nairobi.
Florence Valentino is the go-to person for everything ESL. She began working in the Department of Educational Services and transferred to the English Department in 1994. There is nothing that she doesn’t know about how to help ESL students on their way to commencement. A fun fact about Florence is that the first ESL director, Elaine Brooks, used to tell people that she worked for Florence! The ESL office, and all of the ESL students, would be lost without her.
Geraldine "Gerrie" Wichy is known to all as the heart of the Learning Center. She supervises countless college assistants and Federal Work-Study students who tutor their peers. She ensures that all of the students' tutoring needs are met. The impact she has on the lives of those she works with is immeasurable. Gerrie's knowledge, years of experience, and willingness to help others is always on display when colleagues from other departments call to ask for her advice on some element of accounting/budgeting, CUNY policy, or a procedure to requisition an on-campus service. The Learning Center is Gerrie's extended family and has seen her through good and bad times. She is well-loved, admired, and respected by everyone she comes into contact with.
Mildred Nieves-Rivera is the probation specialist in the Office of Academic Standing, which is part of the Center for Academic Advisement and Student Success. Mildred is an integral part of the office's operations, and her responsibilities entail identifying, contacting, and managing students who fall below the retention standards. She is a survivor of the CUNYfirst and DegreeWorks transition. Mildred is a caring individual who feels passionate about her duties. She has served as a commencement marshall and has been an active member of the annual Encuentro celebration. Mildred enjoys fruits and vegetables and carefully tends the plants in the office, but above all she loves her family and her community.
Mildred Dauber started her college assistant career at Brooklyn College in 1975 in the Payroll Department, when everything was done manually, and then worked in the Theater Department, where she assisted with the office work. Mildred found her new home in the Office of Accounts Payable in 1984, where she still works today. She is a great asset to the office and has witnessed the progression of manually processing payments to a computerized payment system. She is a remarkable woman who takes pride in her work. Mildred has two children who are CPAs, six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.
Thank you to all of our sponsors for your donations to Staff Appreciation Day, June 10, 2016.
- Anna's Café — gift certificate
- Barnes & Noble — gift card
- Bassett Caterers — gift certificates
- Brooklyn College Student Center — gift basket
- Dallas BBQ — gift cards
- Knight Marketing Corporation — Yankee tickets
- Lord's Bakery — gift certificate
- M&D Nursery — gift certificate
- Natural Balance Massage & Wellness Center — gift basket
- Nuchas (empanadas truck) — gift card
- Office of Human Resource Services — gift cards
- Office of the President — one-year membership to the Brooklyn College Fitness Center
- Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration — one-year Brooklyn College parking pass
- O Live Brooklyn — olive oil tasting gift certificate
Staff Appreciation Day Committee
- Renita W. Simmons, Office of Human Resource Services, Committee Liaison
- Juliet L. Manragh and Lynda Sobieski, Office of Human Resource Services, Committee Liaisons
- Quonnetta Calhoun, Office of Diversity and Equity Programs
- Madonna Charles, Office of Procurement and Support Services
- Nazzerine Charles, Office of Undergraduate Admissions
- Palma Dellaporta, Office of the Vice President for Enrollment Management
- Tunji Fussell, Office of Diversity and Equity Programs
- David Gretah, Office of Associate Vice President for Budget and Planning and CFO
- Nicole Haas, Office of the President
- Joseph Lanza, Office of the Bursar
- Carrie Roberts, School of Visual, Media and Performing Arts
- Richard Rolle, Office of the Bursar
- Bettina Smith, Office of Facilities, Planning and Operations
- Sandra Stumbo, Office of the President
- Marian Trupiano, Transfer Student Services Center
- Linda Vergera, Department of Anthropology and Archaeology
- David Wells, Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs