This award recognizes a career of service to the University of Arizona and the community by someone who loves the UA and acts in the spirit of Billy Joe Varney.

Dorothy "Dotty" Spears

Dorothy "Dotty" Spears, Senior Program Coordinator for Maricopa County Cooperative Extension

Dotty has been essential in developing 4-H clubs throughout Maricopa County. She also developed a strong rapport with the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community to promote both youth and adult program participation. Her colleagues say she is an exceptional worker who has demonstrated passion and commitment to the UA and its land-grant mission. Dotty goes far beyond the general role of a supervisor, she has mentored many students and staff, inspiring them to achieve their college degrees. She takes the time to find each person's strengths and incorporates them into high-functioning teams.



Individual Awards are presented to approximately 9 members of the Classified and University Staff, regardless of their length of service, classification or pay grade. These awards are designed to recognize outstanding achievements.

Jennifer Bevins

Jennifer Bevins, Admissions Evaluator, Processing Unit of Undergraduate Admissions

Jennifer inspires other members of her team with her willingness to tackle any task, according to her colleagues. Her creative suggestions have absolutely saved us time and money in every facet of our office. In addition to Jennifer's splendid display of skill and expertise, she also inspires other members of our team to improve, learn and grow within their job.


Jill Calderón

Jill Calderón, Program Director of Latin American Project Development, Office of Global Initiatives

Jill contributes to study abroad programs, the Center for Latin American Studies and the UA's Global Studies Program. She is more than simply an appreciated staff member: She is a colleague whose dedication to students, programmatic creativity and intellectual acumen far exceeds her job description and is key to the (Latin American Studies) center's development and success.



Brent Gambrell

Brent Gambrell, Credentials evaluator, Senior Undergraduate Admissions Processing Unit, Office of Admissions

Brent has unlimited energy and enthusiasm, and his dedication and passion to his work helps advance the mission of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, according to nominator Nancy Warne, senior coordinator for data integrity and admissions. He has incredible creative energies and is a pleasure for all to work with. He exemplifies our mission to receive and process applications in the best interest of perspective UA students.


Isela Gonzáles-Cook

Isela Gonzáles-Cook, Administrative Associate, Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Isela handles all matters related to the department's graduate office. She also coordinates services for 30 faculty members, 108 graduate students and 5,500 graduate students in the department. I cannot think of a person who embodies the virtues of commitment and dedication beyond the call of duty to the success of the UA better than Isela Gonzáles-Cook.


Sumayya Granger

Sumayya Granger, Assistant Director of Academic Services, Center for English as a Second Language

Sumayya is said to do anything and everything required to perform her job exceptionally. She organizes the center's international new student orientation, hires faculty and oversees student workers. She also serves as a leader for the center's Cultural Orientation Task Force and as a lecturer in the UA's English department. Her compassion and willingness to help other, be they teachers, students, student workers or administrators, truly set Dr. Granger apart from others.


Larry Lang

Larry Xiaoming Lang, Senior Program Coordinator, Confucius Institute

Larry was nominated for his outstanding work ethic and achievements. His projects at the institute have earned grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, and he has been able to arrange for UA student musicians to perform in China many times thanks to his involvement with the UA Fred Fox School of Music. His passion, dedication and professionalism in CIUA work and collaboration have made CIUA an invaluable asset at the University and in the Tucson community.


Sharonne Meyerson

Sharonne Meyerson, Program Coordinator, Department of English

Sharonne  serves double duty in the department's Creative Writing Program and Rhetoric, Composition and the Teaching of English Program. Despite all of her responsibilities, her colleagues say she continually exceeds expectations and is one of the department's most dependable employees. She is the single most capable, hardworking, wise and humane staff employee I've ever worked with.


Jeffrey Ratje

Jeffrey Ratje, Assistant Dean of Finance and Administration, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Jeffrey is said by his colleagues to embody excellence and commitment to the UA in everything he does. Ratje, who is also treasurer for the Arizona Agricultural Experiment Station, provides accurate and timely financial information to help the college operate more efficiently.


Abigail Sorg

Abigail Sorg, Program Coordinator, Office of the Registrar

Abigail assists in the course approval process for the office. Her job also requires the challenging task of maintaining accuracy of the UA's Course Catalog. Colleagues say she not only performs her duties with precision, but also makes them look easy.


Grace Thompson

Grace Thompson, Assistant Registrar, College of Medicine

Grace provides mentorship and support for students. She has been the foundation of the Office of Student Affairs and a constant over the past several years. Her ability to do her job superbly while always willing to go above and beyond is truly amazing.


Sarah Wieland

Sarah Wieland, Director of Academic Advising and Student Services, UA South

Sarah works tirelessly on behalf of the students she assists. In addition, Wieland has worked to strengthen relationships between her staff and their counterparts at local and regional community colleges. Sarah has made a significant and positive impact on the UA, UA South as the UA branch campus, and on many Arizona community colleges.


This award goes to a single campus department for excellence in managing people and resources.

There are a few units across the UA campus that affect every student attending the UA, and the Department of Room and Course Scheduling in the Office of the Registrar is one of them.

The department works directly with academic units to schedule courses each semester, while also assisting clubs and off-campus organizations to reserve rooms for special events.

Gail Burd, senior vice provost for academic affairs, commended team members for their outstanding work serving students, faculty members and employees.

RCS is one of the units students, faculty and staff depend upon every day for an essential service, while not even knowing the unit exists – until there is a problem. Fernando Chavez and his colleagues run an exceptionally lean operation that has proven to be an essential resource.


The Team Award is presented to a team primarily comprised of Classified University Staff and tasked with a specific project or function.


Teaching Support Office Team Group Photo

Teaching Support Office in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

The TSO supports, trains or assists more than 14,000 students per year. In a single semester, the office operates more than 100 lab sections; schedules, trains and assists incoming lab instructors; staffs an information window; manages and updates multiple D2L sites; schedules all chemistry and biochemistry classes; handles teacher course evaluations; and supervises the "prep room," a supply center for all chemicals and instrumentation used in the labs. The necessary teaching support functions are so extensive that no single faculty member ... can ever hope to understand all the complexity and mechanics of the work being done by the Teaching Support Office.

Congratulations to These Dedicated Employees!