Tributes to the People Who Make UVA Special, Alderman Library Topping Out, Pie Prize
The past week has included tributes to several people who have made a difference at UVA through their dedication and commitment. Two women who have contributed to the University community for decades were honored as they prepare to retire -- Deputy Chief of Police Melissa Fielding and Executive Director of Major Events Pam Higgins. DC Fielding has served on the University Police force for 30 years. She rose through the ranks from security officer to police officer to sergeant to lieutenant to captain to deputy chief and even served as acting chief of police for a period in summer 2018. DC Fielding's colleagues celebrated with her at a reception earlier this week, where they spoke with great admiration about her professionalism and great appreciation for her mentorship and the personal relationships that she has cultivated. One colleague said, "She knows how we got here, and why, and she was part of many of those decisions." We wish Melissa the very best in her next chapter!
Executive Director of Major Events Pam Higgins will retire in January but was surprised this week with a plaque in her honor mounted to the stage used for Final Exercises. Staff from across our Operations units have worked closely with Pam throughout her 31 years leading the Office of Major Events that included 44 Final Exercises ceremonies along with other large-scale University events. Read more in UVA Today.
Two very special members of the UVA Dine team were also recognized this week. On Thursday afternoon, a portrait of Kathy McGruder, affectionally known as "Ms. Kathy" was unveiled on the third floor of Newcomb Hall as part of the University's Change Agent Portrait Series. Check out this fun UVADine post with photos from the event. Earlier in the week, President Ryan recognized Kenton Shelf and his UVA Dine colleagues who feed student athletes at JPJ. The women's rowing team reached out to the President and asked him to honor Kenton for all that he does. Shout out to the UVA Dine team for the many ways they create a positive UVA experience for our students!
This month marked a major milestone in the Alderman Library renovation/ contruction project also known as the Main Library Renewal. The work is now more than 64% complete and a traditional "topping out ceremony" was held to mark the installation of the two uppermost steel beams in the project. The beams carry the signatures of construction workers, faculty and staff, and friends of the Library. Read more in UVA Today.
Associate Vice President and Chief Facilities Officer Don Sundgren is one of those people who consistently goes the extra mile. He leads a large team of professionals with varied responsibilities and sets a great example for them every day. Following up on a joke made during a meeting, I was happy to give Don a rhubarb pie to thank him for everything he does. Enjoy your pie, Don!