Outstanding Staff Award Recipients

Outstanding Staff Award Winners for 2016And the winners of the 2016 Outstanding Staff awards are:

Avis Benson, Information Technology
Jill Davenport, Purchasing and Central Services
Sonja Hagander, Campus Ministry
Melissa Lee, Athletics
Leah Spinosa de Vega, Center for Global Education and Experience
Laura Swanson, Marketing and Communication

Staff Senate thanks all of the nominators for their work in gathering nominees and recommendation letters. We also thank those who were nominated and recognize the great work that all 18 staff have exhibited to be nominated by their peers.

2016 Staff Appreciation Event set for March 3

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All Augsburg staff are invited to the Staff Appreciation Event at 2:30-4 p.m. on Thursday, March 3, in the Hoversten Chapel, Foss Center. Staff Senate will honor staff who celebrated their 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th, 25th, and 35th anniversaries in 2015 as well as the nominees and winners of the Outstanding Staff Award.

Thursday, March 3
2:30-4 p.m.
Hoversten Chapel, Foss Center


Avis Benson, Information Technology
Caren Custer, Education
Jill Davenport, Purchasing and Central Services
Jen Day, Institutional Advancement
Laura Fritts, Admissions
Sonja Hagander, Campus Ministry
Mara Kilgore, Academic Affairs
Cathy Knutson, Music
Melissa Lee, Athletics
Mike Martin, Facilities Management
Roberto Mata, Custodial Services
Christy Mattingly, Information Technology
Dulce Monterrubio, Multicultural Student Services
Joanne Reeck, Campus Activities and Orientation
Leah Spinosa de Vega, Center for Global Education and Experience
Laura Swanson, Marketing and Communication
Bonnie Tensen, Information Technology
Ann Marie Yacobucci, Education



Margo Abramson, Advancement Services
Rick Andersen, Athletic Facilities
Jane Becker, Athletics
Catherine Bishop, Academic Affairs
Theresa Gade, Human Resources
Linden Gawboy, Nursing
Stephen Geffre, Marketing and Communication
Rebecca John, Marketing and Communication
Rachel Kruzel, CLASS Program
Melodie Lane, Athletics
Michelle McAteer, Athletics
Bruce Nelson, Athletic Development
Stephanie Ruckel, Student Financial Services
Franz Santander, Information Technology
Nancy Shaeffer, Graduate Admissions
Jenny Wheatley, Art Department


Chris Brown, Athletics
Amanda Burgess, Student Financial Services
Aynalem Dawo, Custodial Services
Andrea Dvorak, International Programs
Matt Galloway, Information Technology
Aaron Griess, Athletics
Frank Haege, Athletics
Regina Hopingardner, CLASS Program
Melissa Lee, Athletics
Karen Mulhausen, Theater Arts
Bekele Sankiko, Custodial Services
Matt Schornstein, Information Technology
Jerusalem Tesfaye, Custodial Services
Abennet Tulu, Custodial Services
Woinshet Abebe, Custodial Services


Tom Kelsey, Registrar’s Office
Scott Krajewski, Information Technology
Dixie Shafer, Undergraduate Research and Graduate Opportunity Office
Cory Snyder, Student Financial Services
Rebecca Waggoner, Alumni-Parent Relations
Bill Wittenbreer, Library


Heather Hultquist, Natural Sciences and Mathematics
Drew Privette, Athletics


Margaret Anderson, Center for Global Education and Experience
Bruce Bengry, Public Safety
Mary Laurel True, Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship
Diane Syler, Student Financial Services
Jim Trelstad-Porter, International Programs
Jeanette Wittmer, Academic Advising


Kathleen Kuross, Information Technology
Donna McLean, Development


Nancy Guilbeault, Center for Wellness and Counseling

Congratulations and thank you for your service. Anniversaries being celebrated here are staff who had milestone work anniversaries between January 2015 through February 2016.

Madigan awarded Auggie Pride for January

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Arly Madigan Auggie PrideWe are delighted to announce that Arly Madigan (Facilities) received the Auggie Pride Award for the month of January 2016. The Auggie Pride Award is presented to Augsburg staff as a token of appreciation for their dedication and work that goes above and beyond what is expected.

Arly was specifically nominated for his work during a recent snow storm that hit campus, dumping 13.5″ of snow. He worked hard and long hours to ensure that campus was safe for everyone and back in working order.

To nominate an Augsburg staff for this monthly award, email the name of the staff person and reason for your nomination to staffsenate@augsburg.edu.

Outstanding Staff Award nominations open through Feb. 12

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Nominations for the 2016 Augsburg College Outstanding Staff Awards are being accepted through February 12.

The Outstanding Staff Award is intended to recognize exceptional Augsburg staff members who exemplify the mission statement of the college through their actions. Recipients of this award consistently go above and beyond the call of duty by providing exceptional service to others and/or making innovative and outstanding contributions to enhance the objectives of their department or the Augsburg community. There are six awards given out each year.

Augsburg faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to nominate staff members. More information about the awards and process are posted on the nomination form.


All nomination materials must be submitted to Jim Mathias (matthias@augsburg.edu) no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, February 12.

All recipients will be announced at the Staff Appreciation Event on Thursday, March 3 from 2:30-4 p.m. in the Hoversten Chapel. Augsburg staff length of service recognition also will be presented at the March 3 event.

Questions about the process can be directed to staffsenate@augsburg.edu.

Thank you,

2015-16 Staff Senators


Staff Senate announces staff representatives to University Council

Jim Trelstad-Porter and Jeff Swenson have been selected as staff representatives to University Council. Trelstad-Porter was elected to a 2-year term and Swenson was selected by Staff Senate to serve a 4-year term. The staggered terms allow for more stable transitions in University Council membership when terms end. Going forward all terms will be 4 years long.

For the staff elected position, there were 17 nominated candidates. The quality and passion of these candidates was clear in the survey answers provided. Staff Senate thanks all candidates for their willingness to serve. Because of the number of nominees, Staff Senate decided to hold two elections — first to narrow the field to three and then to select the top candidate.

Since he was elected, Trelstad-Porter was given a choice of a 2- or 4-year term commitment. Staff Senate then performed an internal evaluation of the candidates based on a set of criteria and compiled those rankings. This resulted in Jeff Swenson being offered the remaining 4-year term to University Council representing staff.

Trelstad-Porter and Swenson bring a wealth of leadership abilities and institutional knowledge to the newly forming University Council. We are excited to have them as advocates for staff.

Please help us in congratulating them.

-Staff Senate

Staff Senate holds primary election for University Council position

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Staff Senate received a large number of nominees for the elected staff representative to University Council position. Staff Senate is currently holding a primary election in order to hone the number of candidates to three for the final election beginning on Dec. 1.

If you have not received a ballot via email or have questions about the process, please email staffsenate@augsburg.edu.

The primary election runs through Nov. 24.

University Council nomination period closed

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Staff Senate is no longer accepting nominations for University Council. Staff Senate is currently working with nominees to ensure they accept the nomination and that each candidate meets the outline criteria.

See University Council process page for more information.

We have an excellent nomination pool. Thank you for your nominations and attention to this process.

UC staff rep. nominations now begin

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Augsburg College Staff Senate (ACSS) is starting the process of selecting two representatives to the newly forming Augsburg College University Council. There are two staff representative positions being filled at this time, a 2-year position and 4-year position. One representative will be appointed by ACSS and the other will be chosen through a staff election later in November. After the initial selection, future Council representatives will serve 4-year staggered terms, with terms beginning at the start of the academic year.

Nominations are currently being accepted through November 10 at 3 p.m. Staff may nominate other eligible staff or self-nominate. Staff nominees must be non-temporary, non-union, and be a .75 FTE or greater. Please submit nominations through the online form or email (staffsenate@augsburg.edu).  If you have accessibility concerns, please let a staff senator know or email us.


After the November 10 deadline, all nominees will be vetted by ACSS. For a description of the process, including the vetting criteria, visit the ACSS website. A short questionnaire also will be given to each eligible nominee. The answers to which will be available on the election ballot. The election will take place electronically November 17-24. ACSS will post the results of who the appointed and elected representatives are by December 1 in Amail. Please email staffsenate@augsburg.edu with questions. Thank you for your participation in this important process.


For an overview of the full process, go to our University Council tab.

Hecker and Lilija Auggie Pride winners for September

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We are delighted to announce that Sue Hecker (Office of Admisssions) and Jolee Lilija (Office of Leadership Studies) have received the Auggie Pride Award for the month of September 2015. The Auggie Pride Award is presented to Augsburg staff as a token of appreciation for their dedication and work that goes above and beyond what is expected.

Auggie Pride Presentation for Sue Hecker
Auggie Pride Presentation for Sue Hecker

Nomination for Sue Hecker:

Sue is the Data Processing Coordinator for the Office of Admissions. Her attention to detail to all of our student records is extremely important to the admissions process but also to the university as a whole as it is critical that all student records are complete prior to student matriculation. However, that is not where it ends. At times there can be glitches within a process that need fixing or a student situation is complex and requires trouble shooting across departments. Sue’s ability to look at all perspectives is so important and welcomed when the issue is not always simple. She does all of this with a smile and respect for her fellow colleagues. Sue holds a position that is behind the scenes within the admissions process, but we couldn’t support our students the way we do without her ability to handle so many details.

Nomination for Jolee Lilija: 

Jolee, a 2015 graduate of the MAL program, is the new program director for the Master of Arts in Leadership and the Center for Leadership Studies. In the few months that she has been at Augsburg, she has launched a LinkedIn page for MAL students, faculty, and alumni; developed expertise in Qualtrics for the department to use in surveying current, former, and prospective students; and has made several constructive changes to the MAL new student orientation program. MAL is undergoing an institutional program review this year and her work has helped lay a solid foundation for that work.

To nominate an Augsburg staff for this monthly award, email the name of the staff person and reason for your nomination to staff senate@augsburg.edu.

Congratulations to Bryan Massich, new Staff Senator

Bryan Massich has been elected as a Staff Senator and will join seven other staff members on Staff Senate. Bryan has been at Augsburg since October 2012 and serves as the Maintenance Manager in the Facilities Department. Congratulations to Bryan and thanks to all who voted!
Also, thank you to staff who provided thoughtful feedback through the survey that accompanied the election ballot. We will use this feedback to help better serve staff. As always, if you have questions, comments or concerns, please contact Staff Senate at staffsenate@augsburg.edu.