Award Winners

Kathryn Ernst
Program Manager, Global, Social and Sustainable Enterprise
College of Business
As a Program Manager for the Global, Social and Sustainable Enterprise (GSSE), Kathryn has provided superior team leadership and mentoring to fellow workers while also giving students unparalleled service to enhance their education experience.   Kathryn’s work ethic and passion propelled the GSSE program to a #3 world ranking by Net Impact.  From recruiting students, to finding scholarships and engaging donors, there’s not an aspect of the GSSE that she doesn’t positively impact.  As an alumni of the program herself, Kathryn takes great pride in improving the GSSE program and has created a network of partners and alumni to benefit the students too.  Kathryn also gives her time to speaking about  her experiences with the Peace Corp and serves on the board of a local non-profit group called NEON Global Research and on the Board of Advisors of the International Development Studies Board in the Office of International Programs.

Karolien Denef
Associate Director/Research Scientist & Lab Manager
Central Instrument Facility (CIF), Chemistry
Karolien manages the CIF Mass Spectrometry lab and group, managing 23 instruments, full time staff, two teaching assistants and several undergraduate students. On average, she trains 60 new students each year to use the equipment and aids them in the more complicated analyses. She’s a mentor to all students, welcoming them in her own unique way to the lab. She never ceases to make time for them and serves on many graduate student committees.  Over the past two years, she spearheaded and now coordinates the CIF Summer Schools on Instrumental Methods for Materials and Life Sciences. This program is so popular, both years the class was full and summer 2016 has already reached capacity.  Karolien also works passionately to secure support from vendors for the Summer School, providing additional learning opportunities for students while reducing overall costs to the department. She’s the editor for an open access professional journal, “SOIL” and a manuscript reader for several other journals. She assists in the management and promotion of the CIF facilities while being very focused on community service and outreach efforts such as writing stories for newsletters, working with k-12 students and spreading the mission of the CIF in the community.

Melissa Reese
Department Operations Manager
Electrical & Computer Engineering
During the past year, Melissa went over and above her usual responsibilities and served as a key team member in securing a nearly $2 million grant from the National Science Foundation for the Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) Program. CSU is one of only 6 universities to be awarded funding. Her contributions were integral to meeting specific criteria for funding consideration. For example, she created an internal process for tracking progress through modules and converting modules to courses, to seamlessly interface with the existing university systems. By bringing different areas together in a cohesive proposal, she was also instrumental in the development of a new model for tracking the assignment of teaching requirements, their evaluation and how they are used for promotion and tenure documents. Melissa is also extremely committed to supporting the faculty and staff in the department. Staff members love to highlight her contributions such as motivating others through her strong work ethic and high priority of maintaining relationships with multiple areas on campus to help find solutions and understand policies and procedures.

Susan MacQuiddy
Director of General Counseling Services
CSU Health Network
Susan has served the University for over 30 years and has been a priceless resource to her unit and the University.  She is active in mental health promotion both on and off campus and provides positive mentoring for individuals of all levels from students to colleagues.  Susan has been instrumental in the development of the psychology doctoral internship training program and strives to cultivate strong community partnerships to assist the program.  She has championed maintaining student mental health on campus, while other universities directed students into the community.  Susan serves on numerous committees at the University, city, and national levels including the iTEAM (Intensive Treatment, Education and Assessment Management), Eating Disorders Team and the American Psychological Association.  Dr. MacQuiddy has even trained her dog to come to campus for PET night in the residence halls! This year, Susan was honored by being named Board Member of the Year by the Colorado Behavioral Health Care Council.  Susan has been described as a wonderful collaborator, compassionate, ‘the glue that holds the counseling services together’ and a ‘breath of fresh air’.