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Recognizing Excellence

The Recognizing Excellence program was developed to recognize and reward employees for outstanding contribution to the campus, based on the Finance and Administrative Services (FAS) Values and Core Competency.

The purpose of the recognition program is to:

  1. Identify and recognize FAS Employees who go above and beyond their responsibilities
  2. Reinforce the division’s mission “Excellence in service, partnerships, and results"
  3. Respond to Employee Engagement Survey results and the need for a more robust employee recognition program
  4. Motivate employees through building the FAS division culture by recognizing accomplishments and contributions

2017 Recognizing Excellence Awardees:

Legendary Leader

Legendary Leader
Mary Hinchman
Business and Financial Services

Legendary Service

Legendary ServiceJennifer Ralph
Safety, Risk & Sustainability

Rising Star

Therese Jackson
Safety, Risk & Sustainability



Cai Steffler
Safety, Risk & Sustainability

Continuous Improvement

Esther Minturn
Fiscal Services

Positive Spirit

Positive Spirit
Kelly Steele
Parking and Commuter Services


2017 Recognizing Excellence Nominees:

Legendary Leader: Erin Fullerton, Brittani Brown, Jason Drake, Lindsey Rowell, Mary Hinchman, Diana Cumming, Steven Ramirez, Veronica Roman & Randy Duncan

Legendary Service: Mercedes Wilson, Nasrin DeCoux, Crystal Villalobos, Jack Houston, Jennifer Ralph, Michele Laurenzana, Kelly Steele, Kerry Stein, Malia Tirado, Jon Epes & Debbie Russo                        

Rising Star: Susan Daughters, Shannon Honour, Courtney Tamone, Cassandra Stone, Sandra Basave, Therese Jackson, Elissa Jessup, Virginia Berman, Valeria Suazo, Amber Perez & Kyle Raider                                     

Continuous Improvement: Erica Thissell and Esther Minturn

Collaboration: Juliana Goodlaw-Morris, Edgar Bautista, K9 Armor and Officer Angulo, Mercedes Wilson, Herman Hernandez, Cai Steffler & Mike Treadway

Positive Spirit: Paulette Renfro, Mercedes Wilson, Shannon Honour, Kelly Steele & Veronica Ohm

Nomination Categories and Criteria:


Rising Star (One Staff Awardee): This award recognizes an outstanding individual who has been in FAS for at least six months but no more than two years. They seek out opportunities to learn, are consistently reliable, and are outstanding performers. Those who are eligible for the Rising Star Award are not eligible for the PAW Awards.

Legendary Service (One Staff Awardee) : This individual represents the FAS core competency, “Strive to Deliver Legendary Service”. This person provides an excellent level of service to both internal and external customers, identifying and responding to customer’s needs.

Legendary Leader (One MPP Awardee) : Managers in FAS Division and CSUSM Corporation are eligible for this award. This manager represents the following qualities:

1. Mentoring: Encourages employees to perform at high standards by providing feedback, professional development opportunities, positive reinforcement, and are influential leaders.

2. Modeling: Sets a positive example by encouraging and supporting collaboration and teamwork, helping others achieve success, remaining calm during stressful times, and being honest and trustworthy.

3. Motivating: Inspires commitment, provides vision, promotes and ensures alignment to the FAS division strategic objectives and department goals, and encourages their team to achieve success.

Nomination Guidelines:

    • Both the nominee and nominator must be current, full-time or part-time employees in FAS Division and CSUSM Corporation.
    • MPP’s are only eligible to be nominated for the Legendary Leader award.
    • If there are two (or more) nominations that are equal there may be more than one winner per award category.
    • If there are not enough nominations, the selection committee can choose not to give out that award

You may nominate up to three individuals within FAS:

    • One staff member from your department
    • One staff member from another department
    • One manager from the division (may be in your department or another department)
    • Self-nominations will not be accepted

How to nominate:

  • Provide nominees first and last name and their department.
  • Please give a detailed reason for the nomination (up to 200 words, blank nominations will not be accepted). Please exclude the nominee's name in the descriptive portion of the nomination (Suggested substitutions for names include: he, his, him, she, her, hers, they and their).
  • All nominators are kept confidential unless nominator selects yes to disclose their name.
  • The nominator may be contacted for additional information.

How are awardees selected?

  1. Once the nomination period is closed, all nominations will be compiled and scrubbed by the program facilitator and/or VPFAS Student Assistant.
  2. The descriptive portion of the nomination will be input into survey format and sent to individuals serving on the selection committee.
  3. Each individual on the selection committee will select their top nominees for each award based on the scrubbed description only.
  4. Program facilitator will pull selection committee survey results and the nomination description with the most votes per category will receive the award.
  5. Awardees and all nominees will be recognized at the annual FAS Employee Appreciation Lunch.
  6. In order to ensure an unbiased process, the Vice President of FAS, and program facilitator (Lindsey Cunningham) are not eligible to nominate, be nominated, or receive awards.

Formation of selection committee & duties:

  • Six FAS employees (one from each sub-division) will be appointed by the AVP of each sub-division to serve on the committee for one term.
  • At least two awardees will be asked to serve on the following year’s selection committee.
  • The selection committee will make the final selection of award recipients.