By Chris Casey | University Communications
DENVER—Manuel Gonzales vividly remembers his first day working for the university: Aug. 7, 1978.
It was the dog days of summer 35 years ago and Gonzales, who took a position in housekeeping, figured he'd have the job a year or so. "Then I got married and started having kids, and that changed real fast," he said with a smile.
In 2005, Gonzales (in photo at top) joined the Environmental Health and Safety Department on the Anschutz Medical Campus where he is a biological waste technician. He plans to remain a loyal university employee for five more years. "It's been good," he said. "I'm trying to go for my 40 years."
Scenes from the Employee Recognition Program:
Gonzales is among 338 University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus employees celebrating milestones in their university career this year. The annual Employee Recognition Program took place May 28 and celebrated long-term service employees, as well as recipients of Employee of the Month (Staff Council) and Let Your Light Shine (Exempt Professional Assembly) awards.
This year's recognition lunch drew about 200 people to the Renaissance Denver Hotel. Employees completing five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35 years of service were honored. One other employee reached the 35-year milestone, Nancy Reed, of the Business School. Six employees reached the 30-year milestone: Lori Castle, Kathleen Hart, Steven Howe, Laurel O'Neill, Lisa Schlichting (retired) and Stephen Smidt.
Speaking to the employees were Vice President for Health Affairs and Executive Vice Chancellor for the Anschutz Medical Campus Lilly Marks and Chancellor Don Elliman, as well as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Kevin Jacobs.
Jacobs said the university continues to see a trend of retaining employees. Two years ago the five-years-of-service group numbered 122, last year there were 165, and this year 190. This shows the university is not only making good hires, he said, but is also "bucking the trend" in the overall workforce where employees typically change jobs after a few years of service. "We are so glad to see that you are making these milestones," Jacobs said.
Honorees received a certificate for their length of service and soon will get an email notification about how to select a recognition gift.
"So many of you have been vital to the growth and improvement of the university over a significant number of years, so this is a celebration of your impressive record of service," Marks said. "It must also be recognized how hard you've worked and how much you've contributed during the recent years of economic recession and tight budgets, during which all of us have been resource-constrained. All of us and all of you have been asked to do so much more with so much less—and all of you really have."
Marks noted that the gathering represents 3,290 years of collective service to the university. Both Marks and Elliman called the employees in the room the backbone of the university.
"Your long-term expertise, as Lilly said, the tribal memory, really enhances in a very meaningful way everything we do—both in terms of academics and research," Elliman said. "You make important contributions every single day to the the success of our students and, for that matter, the success of our faculty. I'm proud of the fact that we are making a real difference in students' lives."
Elliman encouraged employees to take advantage of professional development opportunities, including the tuition waiver benefit and the thousands of SkillSoft online learning courses available through the university. He also reminded employees about two upcoming events: CU Day @ Elitch Gardens on June 21 and Bike to Work Day on June 25.
Winners of the Staff Council Employees of the Month and the (Exempt Professional) Let Your Light Shine awards were shown on large screens in the ballroom. The 2013 Employees of the Month were: Karl Davis, Deserae Frisk, Lindsay Harn, Billie Hull, Daniel Kerley, Kay Marshall, Deborah Malley, Irene Rael, Joseph Sandoval and Therese Stinnett.
Let Your Light Shine recipients for the past year were: Elshimaa Basha, Allison Besant, Sara Brandspigel, Rachel Cornelius, Melissa Giardina, Greg Lee, Mac McAllister and Deanna Schroder.
Members of the 2014 Employee Recognition Day Committee are: Shelly Crowley, Deborah Makray, Gequinn Mattox, Ari Liston, Everlyn Sandoval, Richard Benson, Christine Gillen and Vicky Saulsberry.
25-year milestones: Dawn Arge, Larry Armenta, Herbert Brown, Ylla Carson, Sheryl Coffey, Judith Cooper, Denise Evancich, Carla Hawley, Michelyn Lintz, Nicholas Mainardi, Nancy Mills, Jerome Overby, Leslie Rook (retired), Rhonda Truesdale, Elizabeth Van De Velde and Sandra Wiseley-Carr.
20-year milestones: Agnes Anderson, Geraldine Archuleta, David Armstrong (deceased), Randall Basham, Jacqueline Brinkman, David Bristol, Michael Carlson, Leedel Cohenour, Paul Darby, Douglas Derber, Mark Douse, Jamie Esparza, Mercedes Golden, Suzanne Heasley, Evan Icolari, Daniel Kerley, Charles Medina, Michael Nicklasson, David Paul, Bernadette Pistone, Becky Robinson, Riad Safadi, Lori Sherman, Susan Tafoya, Larry Terrell, Lori Trullinger, Janis Trunce, Connie Turner, Robert Williams, Kenneth Wolf and Daniele Wolff.
15-year milestones: Lawrence Abbott, Ginger Acierno, Jeremiah Adams, Julianne Altmix, Ronald Andrews, Sharon Anthony, Nicole Ayodeji, Cathy Bell, Thomas Berry, Eric Campagna, Sean Clark, Jacalyn Dougherty, Caroline Duffield, Leeann Fields, Deborah Follenwieder, Don Galarowicz, Patricia Godbey, Eric Gray, Maria Hendrickson, Karen Jackson, Douglas Kasyon, Thinh Le, Denise Leberer, Martina Lopez, Karen Marks, Kirk Martin, Joseph Martinez, Gary Meyer, Lynette Michael, Jacqueline Milowski, Vimol Mitchell, Michaela Montour, Mary Morales, Shannon Pretzel, Shanelle Roquemore, Richard Simons, Sean Spellman, Rebecca Stricker, Joanne Wambeke, Barbara Williams.
10-year milestones: Theresa Anderson, Cheath Ban, Angela Beale, Bolormaa Begzsuren, Layna Breyare, Charmaine Brown, Debra Buck, Amber Bunch, Niraj Chaudhary, Gail Cohen, Michael Cohen, Monica Coulter, Paul Crowley, Theresa Dargevics, James Finster, Carmel Harberg, Tate Hermanson, Kathleen Illian, Vonelle Kelly, Timothy Kinsella, Jennifer Koch-Zapfel, Anastasia Krajec, John Lackey, Denise Larson, Timothy Lockie, Barbara Lommen, Mary Loos, Anthony Martinez, David Martinez, Dominic Martinez, Gequinn Mattox, Lisa McGill, Wolde Mirach, Michael Mitchell, Candice Murchison, Lisa Neale, Julie O'Brian, Gerald Perry, Thomas Power, Angelica Reveles, Frankie Rodriguez, Robert Schell, Rose Segawa, Natalie Shiver, Lyle Thomas, Trishia Vasquez and Steve Weaver.
Five-year milestones: Dolores Alexander, Michael Anselmo, Daniel Argersinger, Meghan Atherton, Lindsay Austin, Diana Bain, Elizabeth Barth, Kerrie Bathje, Elizabeth Bay, Shana Bergen, John Bergman, Nancy Bieber, Seamus Biffinger, Lesley Bishop, Mary Boe, Delan Bolack, Aaron Boothe, Kenneth Bosworth, Linda Braddy, Alice Bradley, Michelle Bray, Mona Briggs, James Broscheit, James Brown, Jennifer Bruining, Kenneth Bruso, Kathleen Bui, Joanne Cabrera, Judy Campbell, Melissa Card, Melissa Caron, Jessica Castle, Alan Churchill, Gayle Cisneros, Susan Claxon, Jean Cofer, Melissa Cremers, Vicki Crites, Dianthony Davis, Adelita DeHerrera, Sarah Derdowski, Cuong Dinh, Kristen Dixion, Alicia Downing, Kelly Dufner, Victoria Engels, Jeff Exstrum, Nicole Fasano, Cathalina Fontenelle, Pei-Keng Foong, Christine Forrester, Gene Foulk, Tavia Franklin, Deserae Frisk, Luette Frost, Karlene Fry, Charles Gallegos, Nicole Ganley, Leslie Gerbracht, Allison Glover, Patricia Goggans, Amanda Gonzales, Shelly Gregory, Jeffrey Gulka, Kieu Ha, Joseph Halter, Kimberly Ellen Harding, Deneshia Hearon, Mitchell Heman, Christine Henderson, William Henkel, John Herrera, Katherine Holwell, Tommy Hoong, James Howell, Susan Howell, Tristine Huerta, Billiekay Hull, Heather Jacques, Beverly Janik, Carolyn Jarrett, Marisha Jones, Megan Jorgensen, Enrique Karr, Gretchen Kelm, Sheila Kennedy, Mary Kenworthy, Joseph Kimitch, Stephanie Kirchner, David Kitashima, Crisanta Klinger, Melissa Koehler, Ruth Koger, Jaklyn Kraft, Neil Krauss, Irene Kristufek, Karen Ledford, Erica Lefeave, Byron Lemieux, Matthew Lemme, Christopher Lemon, Faming Li, Jessica Lincoln, William Lind, Olivia Llamas, Lilibeth Lopez-Gonzalez, Amy Lowell, Dakota Lyons, Dawn Mann, Cynthia Mansfield, Sharon Marston, Randy Martinez, Erika Matich, Nancy Maule, Luz Maya, Melissa McConnell, Patricia McKissock, Mary Jo Meadows, Veronica Medina, Elizabeth Mendoza, James Middlestadt, Jekaterina Mileiko, Leslie Mitchell, Koreena Montoya, Allison Moravec-Rice, Sandra Nicholls, Ruby Nugent, Alexandra Ohene-Mobley, Shiela Otero, Kaila Parrish, Jennifer Payne, Shaleeta Pearson, Stacey Pendleton, Kari Phillipps, Katherine Politis, Barbara Pope, Ashlee Powers, Jeffrey Proctor, Christine Raffaelli, Carol Reagan, Regina Reece, Jack Rhea, Diane Roche, Nicole Rodriguez, Melissa Rosario, Carol Ross, Rachel Rowe, Dora Safoh, Gail Sasao, Bonnie Savone, David Sawyer, Jeffrey Schildgen, Wendy Schwarz, Jeffrey Schweinfest, Joyce Scott, Roberta Sebby, Terri Shaner, Annitta Shareef, Rachel Simpson, Cherlyn Smith, Kyla Smith, Mary Somerville, Charla Spies, Nancy Spomer, Michelle Springer, Christopher Stelmach, Barbara Suits, John Sunnygard, Rachelle Sutherland, Stephan Tapp David Thorson, Yvonne To, Jese Vargas, Allan Trumpler, Christopher Turner, Clarissa Tutkowski, Meegan Urbanek, Crystal Vessels, Gwendolyn Wade, Nahshon Walker, Marshall Ward, Vicki Weister, Pamela Welker, Audrey Wen, Katherine Werfelmann, Rachel Wilcoxson, Adam Wilkie, Christin Williamson, Christopher Withrow, Theresa Woelk, Lori Workman, Nancy Wright, Danielle Young, Kelly Zaccone and Jessi Zemetra.