Reggie Baker greets patients
with extra care
by Jenny Gerow
Reggie Baker genuinely cares for the patients he encounters
daily at the West Hospital Complex entrance, a gateway for cancer
and kidney patients.
caring began more than 25 years ago when his brother died from
cancer at age 16. He was real sick, and he needed lots of
help, Baker recalled.
a supervisor of the front door team, personally greets thousands
of patients each year. He has trained himself to become familiar
enough with patients schedules to anticipate their needs.
A 20-year U.Va. employee, Baker has received an Outstanding Contribution
Award for providing excellent customer service.
believe Randolph is able to go above and beyond what is expected
of him because of his outgoing personality and genuine caring
for human beings, said Emanuel Brown, Bakers supervisor
know the routine. One day a patient will look healthy, then they
lose their hair, soon they are helped from their vehicles, and
soon they are gone. It is very sad, Baker said. But
I enjoy getting to know them. I like helping them.
said, Reggie remembers patients names, their family
names and even their next clinic appointments. He makes their
sometimes-painful and unpleasant visit more bearable.
kind of assistance earned Baker the Employee of the Month award
for December 2000. One of the people who nominated him commented,
A Cancer Center patient had faced roadblocks in his personal
life and was feeling very despondent and overwhelmed, physically
and emotionally. Reggie noticed and spent more time than usual
with the patient.
the patient reported that the extra time spent with Reggie saved
Boyajian is public face of family medicine
by Jenny Gerow
just another friendly face is not enough for Robert Boyajian.
the man at the front desk in the Universitys Department
of Family Medicine, he is a constant source of smiles, greetings
and felicitations, but the extent to which he reaches out to patients,
co-workers and anyone who comes his way goes far beyond the call
believe that Bob is the public face of family medicine,
and were looking good because of him, Dr. M. Norman
Oliver, assistant professor in the Department of Family Medicine,
wrote in recommending Boyajian for an Outstanding Contribution
regularly sreceive accolades from patients about his attention
to their concerns, said Dr. Sim S. Galazka, Walter M. Seward
Professor and chair of the department. To give an example,
an elderly patient had no telephone access and had a serious heart
condition and medication complications requiring frequent contact.
I was unable to resolve this problem through standard means. Bob
found a way for this patient to obtain a phone, an absolutely
critical instrument in keeping her well.
is not unusual behavior for him. He truly cares about our patients
and personally works with them with compassion, warmth and understanding,
was a patient in 1995 before he began volunteering at the main
hospitals information desk. He was recruited for full-time
employment and continued as a hospital auxiliary member in various
capacities, including assisting with a newsletter and helping
organize the annual Relay for Life.
moving to his current position in family medicine, he volunteered
to work after hours in the gift shop so it could remain open in
The gift shop has experienced record evening sales due to
Bobs enthusiastic salesmanship and capable supervision,
said Lithe A. McCaslin, gift shop manager for the hospital auxiliary.
is a model for all of us in his dedication and caring, Galazka
One kidney less, Liz Courain is a bigger human being
by Jenny Gerow
an employees qualifications for an Outstanding Contribution
Award, donating a kidney to one of your charges certainly ranks
right up there.
Liz Courains selfless act of organ donation (see Inside
UVA, Jan. 11) only served to illuminate her many contributions
to the U.Va. Health System, where she is director of volunteer
a time when health care organizations nationwide are struggling
financially, volunteer workers are more valuable than ever. Courain
leads a force of more than 1,200 volunteers, yet takes time to
interview all of her adult group, supervise their orientation
and follow up with them to make sure their experience is personally
volunteers work for personal satisfaction and not money, Liz must
motivate them and not simply command, noted Dorothy Richards,
president of the U.Va. Hospital Auxiliary.
also has the rare ability to come up with a good idea and see
it through. Her supporters point to the establishment of a bank
of language interpreters, who give non-English-speaking patients
the same access to care that English speakers receive.
is an irresistible force who has never met an immovable object,
declared Ronald A. Bouchard, the systems chief administrative
recalled Courains decision to donate a kidney to an ailing
volunteer. She did extensive research, consulted with the people
her decision would affect, prepared diligently for surgery, then
told her story to others.
the same way she approaches everything, he said.
first lived what she teaches when you see a need, find
a way to fill it. Get all the facts. Identify the people who will
be impacted. Seek their input. Prepare yourself to the extent
possible for the challenge ahead. Take action. Deal with the results.
Share the good news it attracts energetic, dedicated people
to your cause.
Raydell Cross: the conscience of UVas College
22 years, Raydell Cross was an indispensable resource at the Universitys
College at Wise and a veritable storehouse of knowledge about
all matters related to purchasing, accounts payable and campus
left her native Wise County, where the Universitys only
four-year branch college is located, shortly after graduating
from high school, but decided to move home when her son, Greg,
was ready for junior high. She began working at the college in
was the switchboard operator for a year before moving to accounts
payable, where she was known for her understanding of purchasing
procedures and for her mischievous wit.
used to handle work-study payroll and process student parking
stickers and registration fees, Cross recalled. I
loved meeting the students and joking with them.
OQuinn, the psychology professor who nominated Cross for
the award, described her as the efficient and staunch defender
of the college.
was the person faculty looked to for help with travel policies
and reimbursements. And administrators sought her guidance on
the dos and donts of purchasing.
a great many people, policy has simply been ask Raydell,
wrote George E. Culbertson, senior vice chancellor and provost,
in support of Cross nomination. This has been the
case because Raydell has been consistently scrupulous in her work,
profound in her understanding of changing policy and genuinely
desirous of working with college personnel, faculty and administrators.
Sheila Cox Combs described Cross as the conscience
of UVa-Wise. She knows the rules and regulations about spending
money and works hard to make sure that everyone here works within
those rules, Combs wrote.
who retired from the College in April, says she misses her extended
family at UVa-Wise. I miss the people, Cross said.
The college is a great place to work. I enjoyed it so much.
Roberts works behind the scenes of interior design
by Jenny Gerow
Roberts had no design for the path her career would follow when
she became a U.Va. employee 34 years ago.
her first job as a secretary in the department of psychiatric
medicine to her current position as head of the Interior Design
Office in the Health System, she has dedicated herself to producing
Roberts did not simply do the job, said Jules I. Levine,
associate vice president for the Health System, in recommending
her for an Outstanding Contribution Award. She has had a
wonderful positive influence on the institution by sensitizing
everyone to the importance of the interior environment, the impact
it can have on the healing of patients and the work environment
for faculty and staff.
She is praised for her interpersonal communication and problem-solving
skills and professionalism, as well as her sense of humor, energy
and patience. Always cost-conscious, shes known as a fair
but tough negotiator by vendors and the Universitys purchasing
contributions can be seen all around Grounds, from the Health
System to the Presidents Office.
created the position, which will be eliminated when she retires
this month, in the 1980s. Over the years, she has faced many challenges
but has felt rewarded by being able to meet and work with so many
different people. It was exciting to make their space look
the way they wanted it to look and be very functional, she
Watson, director of the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library,
praised Roberts legacy to the recently completed library
renovation. [People] may not know who was behind the scenes,
working on their behalf, but my guess is thats the way Shirley
would want it letting her work speak for her.
Ellen Artis, educational director at the Childrens Medical
Center, said, She has been a dedicated steward of the University.
For buses, riders, Feggans offers service with a smile
Feggans is a guy you want to have around. And he is around
and around, and around, and around, as he drives his regular daily
bus route for the University Transit Service.
U.Va. employees have the opportunity to interact with as many
members of the University community each day as do UTS drivers.
Students, faculty, staff, visitors they all ride the bus.
Feggans sees to it that their encounters are friendly, safe and
greets his passengers with a warm Good morning or
Good afternoon, and takes time to explain options
to customers who are looking for directions to specific areas
on the Grounds, David J. Kloss, assistant director for transit
operations, wrote in nominating Feggans for an Outstanding Contribution
Award. Mr. Feggans is a role model for all to emulate.
passengers arent the only ones to benefit from his work.
His mentorship of the ever-changing fleet of student drivers provides
a cornerstone for the organization. His supervisors seek him out
for his input and knowledge of the bus operation. His professional
performance on charters brings in repeat business for UTS. Feggans
even volunteers to lend a hand on weekends with his former colleagues
on the crew that services the bus fleet. (He moved from under
the engine cowl to the drivers seat nearly eight years ago.)
short, he is a shining beacon of professionalism, inside and outside
UTS, his supporters say.
cares about his job, and that trait shines through in everything
he does, every single day, said Kendall Howell, assistant
to the director of the Department of Parking and Transportation
Munson known as the go to coworker
by Jenny Gerow
the 240 graduate students in biomedical sciences, Janice Munson
is part fairy godmother, part banker. As the fiscal administrator
for the School of Medicines Graduate Programs Office, she
has helped students get a reimbursement plan for health insurance,
resolve their administrative or funding problems and organize
the annual research symposium for their work.
Munson regularly acts as an advocate for students, said
Michael D. Davis, president of the Graduate Biosciences Society.
Graduate Programs Office provides financial and administrative
services that span several U.Va. schools and more than 20 departments
and interdisciplinary programs.
her first year on the job in 1991, Munson saved the office more
than $400,000 just by scrupulous oversight of expenditures
... and encouraging/ facilitating submission of institutional
and individual fellowship and training grants, wrote Gary
K. Owens, associate dean for Graduate and Medical Scientist Programs,
in nominating her for the Outstanding Contribution Award.
program administrators on the staff who supported her nomination
said they depend on her for keeping them up to date. This year
she steered the group through a new accounting system.
of her circumspect accounting and research skills, Ms. Munson
is known as the go to person for program administrators,
wrote Jane C. Adair and several others in supporting their colleague.
addition, she designed a training program to make sure program
and fiscal administrators handle graduate funding correctly. It
may be the only known instruction for program staff involved
in support of both departmental and interdisciplinary graduate
programs, said associate professor Joel W. Hockensmith,
director of the biochemistry & molecular genetics graduate
Janice simply goes above and beyond the call of duty as
a fiscal administrator and takes on the role of an educator,
If the pipe breaks, they call Durrer
E. Durrer spent Christmas with a broken water main.
director of utilities at Facilities Management, was cited for
his extraordinary efforts on behalf of the University, including
responding to several broken gas lines, water line ruptures, steam
line problems and resolving a Christmas-day water main failure
that could have disrupted fire protection.
put things on hold for everybodys family, said Durrer,
who praised co-workers Vern Lamb, Sandy Gardner and Frank Hill
for their efforts that day. [The family] understands when
the University calls, we have to go.
self-taught man with a firm understanding of engineering concepts
and thorough knowledge of building codes, Durrer is frequently
consulted by engineers, regulatory officials and others for technical
input during design and construction, both on Grounds and from
is credited with saving the University money through increased
efficiencies in chilled water plants, devising less expensive
ways of replacing sewer and water lines, managing storm water
and suggesting better utility routes in several renovation plans.
emergency situations, Charlie Durrers exceptional responsiveness,
vast technical expertise and model leadership of his crews have
restored interrupted utilities to our clinical and research facilities
in stunningly short time spans, said Will Shaw, assistant
director of the Health System physical plant. He has always
produced the necessary human, equipment and material resources,
sometimes seemingly out of thin air.
Earl Ward, senior project manager of Facilities Managements
planning and construction department, said, We have avoided
costly redesign, interruption to service and rework that could
have been encountered if it were not for Mr. Durrers involvement.
try to do 110 percent in the 20 years I have been here and I try
to instill that in my people as well, Durrer said.
Russell raises the bar for nurse practitioners
by Jenny Gerow
Zenker knows there must have been a time before Katherine Dale
Russell became outcomes manager in neurosciences. But its
almost impossible to remember how we got along, said Zenker,
a physical therapist.
and a colleague proposed the position of outcomes manager in January
1999 while both were in U.Va.s graduate program for nurse
practitioners. In just one year, their work netted a savings of
more than $2 million, due to fewer patient complications and shorter
cost of in-patient care is not the only improvement Russell has
and communication between staff members has increased and the
coordination of in-patient and follow-up care is much better,
according to Heather Turner, a nurse who considers Russell a mentor.
nominating her, Russells supervisor, Susan Prather, wrote,
She is so sincere and articulate in our need to provide
excellent care for every single patient that she has truly been
a role model for all patient care providers.
patients in the Neuroscience Service Center come in with head
or spinal cord injuries, brain tumors or cerebral hemorrhage.
They go from intensive care through a pain-staking recovery in
some cases. Russells clinical research involves trying to
improve the mechanisms of their care, from a better medication
cycle to improved feeding-tube protocol.
also teaches in the Nursing School and lectures nationally on
outcomes management. A year ago, she revived Nursing Grand Rounds,
a lecture series where U.Va. nurses report on their research,
as a way to educate and inspire each other.
has created a new paradigm and set the highest standard for the
role of nurse practitioner, wrote Dr. David Vincent, chief
resident of neurosurgery.
accomplishments are noticed by more than just her colleagues.
to Vincent, The only group that thinks more of Dale than
her co-workers is the patients they absolutely adore her.
Ooh, la la! Terri Smith is a treasure
by Jenny Gerow
E. Smith, administrator for the French department, pushes the
envelope of human capabilities in an office setting. Shes
a conference organizer par excellence, a budget manager, menu
planner, student supervisor, Oracle ace, visa expert, problem
solver, hand-holder to faculty members and mother-confessor to
ask the three faculty members who have served as department chair
and nominated Smith for the award. John Lyons, Mary McKinley and
Roland Simon have depended on her down-to-earth manner, devotion
and discretion for the past five years.
that time, she has organized two world-class conferences, including
the 34th annual meeting of the North American Society for 17th-Century
French Studies held in March. She also has supported faculty searches,
faculty research, visiting professors and graduate students, and
supervises the office staff with care and humor.
detail is too small or beyond her efficient touch. She took on
the aging faculty lounge, replacing furniture and adding a water
cooler and coffee machine, and encouraged more informal contacts
between faculty members and students.
Smith keeps a certain sangfroid about her duties. The week before
the department was to host the international conference this year,
there was a bomb scare in Cabell Hall, where the French department
offices are located, and it had to be evacuated.
Smith was seen in the parking lot with her cell phone in one hand
and a file folder in the other, the nominating faculty members
wrote. Not even an evacuation and yellow police tape could
keep [her] from getting her work done on time.
Cheryl Krueger, associate professor and language program director:
By watching her remain poised and helpful in difficult situations
I have been inspired to evaluate and improve my own interpersonal
and administrative skills.
no doubt about it, noted Janet Horne, associate professor
and director of graduate studies for the French department, shes
Barbara Strain streamlines supply ordering
by Matt Kelly
A. Strain saved the Health System $6 million over two to three
manager of Supply Standardization and Logistics, and before that
as clinical supply analyst, she has been instrumental in creating
a system of group purchasing, product evaluations and supply chain
logistics. This resulted in standardization in many clinical areas
and across department lines, a goal thought impossible for academic
medical centers. She said the plan included re-examining long-standing
contracts to keep up with technology and consolidating similar
of Albemarle County, had been the chief technologist of clinical
microbiology until she took over her current position in 1997.
She has been an employee of the University for 17 years, holding
a variety of jobs.
had no idea how much it would save, said Strain. Since
they had just created the position, I had hoped to at least save
policies worked so well, the Medical Center has created a division
of Standardization and Logistics to work with all services on
ordering and reorganizing storage areas.
is exciting to know that you are recognized by your peers and
it is heart-felt, she said of being named an outstanding
has had a major influence in achieving high cost savings and in
reducing inefficiencies throughout our supply chain, said
Jane Erwine, director of value analysis for the Medical Center.
system of supply standardization has been recognized as a best
practice model among University Health System Consortium
Hospitals across the country and has placed U.Vas Medical
Center in a national spotlight for implementing a successful program.
also was praised for reducing needle stick injuries at the Medical
Center, conducting regular fire drills and fire prevention programs,
as well as improving the alarm system at Jordan Hall.
is seen as a leader in the effort to maintain a safe environment
for patients, visitors and employees, said Ronald A. Bouchard,
chief administrative officer for the Health System administration.