Recipients of Board of Regents Staff Awards Honored

Adelphi, Md. (Sept. 18, 2017) -- University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents Chairman James T. Brady and USM Chancellor Robert L. Caret honored winners of the 2017 USM Regents' Staff Awards at a breakfast ceremony before the September 15 meeting of the board, held at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).

The awards recognize staff members who have made exceptional contributions to their organizations, students and the university community.

Award winners are selected based on nominations and letters of support from colleagues, culminating in a formal recommendation from the Council of University System Staff, which provides non-faculty USM employees with a voice in system governance.

Each award carries a $1,000 prize, provided by the institutions and the University System of Maryland Foundation.

The following USM staff members were honored. The descriptions are adapted from the remarks made by Chairman Brady and Chancellor Caret at the awards event.

Exceptional Contribution to the Institution or Unit-Exempt Staff: Claudia Diamond, Director of Academic Success, University of Baltimore (UB) School of Law.

During Ms. Diamond's seven years as Director of Academic Success for the School of Law at UB, she has been focused on improving student outcomes, designing and implementing strategies to assist student learning, predominantly for those students considered high-risk. The most recent and prominent of Claudia's projects is the Legal Writing Center. Funded through a UB Foundation grant and staffed with five second- and third-year law students, the Legal Writing Center is a creative, innovative, and cost-effective approach to serving UB's law student population, especially first-year law students. As an alumna of UB's School of Law, Claudia knows first-hand that effective and clear writing is essential for legal professionals and her personal touch with students enhances her contributions.


Exceptional Contribution to the Institution-Non-Exempt Staff: Audrey Stewart, Program Administrative Specialist in Facilities Management, University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP).

Audrey has worked at the University of Maryland for 21 years, serving as the program administrative specialist in facilities management for the past two.  In this capacity, she coordinated the Cogeneration Steam Plant and the Energy/Utility Infrastructure upgrade. During this multi-year project, Audrey took a leadership role and served as acting project manager on the cleanup and redesign of the former Facilities Management Work Control Center, now known as the new Customer Service Response Center.

In addition, Audrey spearheaded her department efforts during the Green Office program, designed to help the university save money as well as resources. Moreover, Audrey is involved in numerous voluntary activities through the office of community engagement. Colleagues describe her as a reliable volunteer who brings a "can-do" and sunny spirit to her efforts.


Outstanding Service to Students in an Academic or Residential Environment-Exempt Staff: Jenna Beckwith, Sexual Health Coordinator at UMCP's University Health Center.

Over the past five years, Jenna has distinguished herself as a motivated and creative employee willing to try new things to benefit students.  Jenna has worked passionately on understanding and supporting transgender student's needs.  She has been an extraordinary leader in promoting LGBTQ+ inclusion within the University Health Center, implementing creative process improvements delivering care for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients.  Her efforts have helped change the perception of the LGBTQ students who once viewed the University Health Center an unwelcoming environment. Her pioneering efforts resulted in the University of Maryland's recognition as a "Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality" by the Human Rights Campaign.  Only one other US campus shares that distinction.  Through Jenna's personal guidance and program building, she is improving the health of students at the University of Maryland in significant ways.


Extraordinary Public Service to the University or to the Greater Community-Exempt Staff: Rebecca Bowman-Rivas, Law & Social Work Service Program Manager at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) School of Law.

Rebecca instructs and supervises UMB's social work students who, in turn, collaborate with law students to provide vital services through Carey Law's legal clinics. The clients served face significant legal challenges, including issues of immigration/asylum, HIV/AIDS, and reentry into the community following incarceration.  Working with the Immigration Clinic, Rebecca and her students help clients in crisis access vital community resources; most do not qualify for public assistance.

In her work with the HIV/AIDS clinic, Rebecca recently intervened to help a transgendered client find safe housing after realizing the client was living out of her car. The clinic also provides reentry services for elderly prisoners released late in their prison terms. Rebecca's current and former students sing her praises. Her work has been recognized at the local and national level. Many clients affirm Rebecca's impact, stating, "They don't know where they'd be without her help and care."


Effectiveness and Efficiency-Exempt Staff: Prasad Doddanna, Director of the Information & Decision Support System at Coppin State University (CSU).

Prasad Doddanna has worked at Coppin State University for 16 years as Director of Information & Decision Support Systems.  His creative and innovative approaches to his work has saved Coppin millions of dollars, contributed to the Division of Information Technology revenue base, and resulted in regional and national recognition. Prasad's original ideas-student bill and voucher processing, online time entry, use of analytics, Cloud Computing, and other efforts-have resulted in savings of approximately 2 million dollars over ten years for Coppin, while generating hundreds of thousands of dollars of revenue.  Prasad is the standard setter for employees who contribute far more than is ever expected. He has done so with a high level of professionalism.


Effectiveness and Efficiency-Non-Exempt Staff: Paul Clements, Engineering Technician at Salisbury University (SU).

Paul has been at Salisbury's Henson School of Science & Technology for 27 years, consistently working beyond the expectations for his position. His ability to identify, troubleshoot, repair, design, fabricate, and communicate saves SU significant money every year.  For example, when a high-speed centrifuge was damaged with a replacement cost of $25,000 and a repair cost of $15,000, Paul was able to repair the centrifuge for about $2,000. This ability to diagnose and repair a variety of technical machines has saved SU literally hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years. Salisbury University's ability to do "more with less"-a hallmark of USM's Effectiveness and Efficiency initiative-has been a genuine source of pride for this institution and the system. Staff members such as Paul Clements are the story behind that success.


Contact: Mike Lurie
Phone: 301.445.2719