Clayton State University has announced the five finalists for the University’s 2012 Alice Smith Staff Award. They are: from the Office of Financial Aid, Patricia Barton; from Procurement Services, Marcia Jones; from Athletics Pat Keane, from Department of Facilities Management, Jivaro Lovett; and from the Office of Network and Enterprise Services, Dan Newcombe.
Clayton State’s Alice J. Smith Awards, for both faculty and staff, will be presented at Clayton State’s Faculty/Staff Awards Ceremony on Apr. 24 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Spivey Hall. An annual event since 1995, the Smith Awards are presented to the faculty member and staff member ranked most outstanding as determined by committees of their peers. The two, $1000 awards were established by local philanthropist Joseph Smith in honor of his wife, Alice. The winners of both categories will be announced at the Apr. 24 ceremony.
Originally from Perry, Ga., Barton currently resides in McDonough. She has worked within the USG for 19 years and served as Director of Financial Aid since 2008. In 2011, she served as President for RACSFA (the USG advisory group for financial aid). She is currently serving as treasurer for the Georgia Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (GASFAA).
In 2012 she received the Gold award for the Chancellor’s Outstanding Customer Service Leadership Award in 2012 and was named a finalist for the Alice J. Smith Award. This is her third nomination for this award.
She and her husband have been married for 33 years and they have one daughter who is also married. She has a grandson who recently turned two. Barton enjoys reading and loves TV dramas. Her two commitments outside of work are singing in her church choir and playing Bunco with a ladies group.
“Being nominated for the Alice J. Smith Award is truly an honor. Every day we go into our offices and bury ourselves in the details of our jobs, often oblivious to what is going on around us. I am deeply touched that others have taken the time away from their busy schedules to think of me, let alone take the time to say something kind. I very much appreciate the recognition from others, and at the same time it makes me more determined to do the same for someone else when given the opportunity,” expresses Barton.
Jones has worked with Clayton State since 2006 where she began working in the budget department for Continuing Education. She moved to the Budget & Finance department in 2008 and was promoted to director in 2009.
Currently living in Stockbridge, Jones was born and raised in Macon. She received a bachelor’s degree in business management from Valdosta State University. She has previously held the position of vice president in retail banking for Bank of America as well as, branch manager, small business champion for the East Atlanta region, mortgage advisor and a branch manager trainer.
She has one daughter and is a passionate mentor to young people. She has been recognized for her decade long dedication to the youth ministry at her church. Jones also enjoys reading and writing poetry.
Jones considers her position very challenging but rewarding at the same time. She is often informing the campus of policy and procedure do’s and don’ts! She often feels the challenging but yet rewarding part of her job is enforcing the law and providing viable options all with a pleasant attitude and a smile.
“I am very humbled by the nomination and to become a finalist just renders me speechless! You pray you are a blessing to others; however, learning about this has truly blessed me,” says Jones.
Keane, who has been with Clayton State for 29 years, currently is an administrative assistant in Athletics. She first worked part time as the switch board operator in 1984. She has worked full time in Continuing Education as well as Media & Printing Services.
“I don’t believe there is a better environment than a college campus to work. Helping students and coaches make their dreams come true is so rewarding. I look forward to coming to work every day… of course working with awesome colleagues helps too!,” says Keane.
The rewarding and challenging aspect to her job is keeping up with the travel needs of Clayton State’s athletic teams. This is the fourth time Keane has been recognized as a finalist for the Alice Smith Award.
Keane, who is married with three children, enjoys spending time with her grandchildren and staying active outdoors. A native of Philadelphia’s Chestnut Hill neighborhood, she has lived in Morrow for 39 years.
Lovett was born in Detroit, but now resides in Forest Park. He began working in Facilities Management in 2004 as a temporary employee in the Landscape Management department. He was recently promoted to the Skilled Craftsperson II within the Building Operations department.
“I enjoy the people I work with, the people around campus and learning something new every day. I am privileged to work on this campus and enjoy coming to work every day,” says Lovett.
Lovett plays a role in keeping this campus running on a daily basis and taking care of the all the lighting on campus. He considers this as the most challenging part of his job but knowing people do not have to worry about those things make it rewarding.
He received a bachelor’s degree from Savannah State University. Prior to coming to Clayton State, he worked for the Solo Company for 10 years. Lovett says he is a single and a proud father who enjoys football, traveling to the beach, and bowling.
“Being nominated for the Alice Smith Award is big deal for me, because I am a behind the scenes type of person. This is an honor and a privilege. To get noticed means that some people think highly of me, and I am honored for that,” says Lovett.
After graduating from Marist College with a degree in computer science, Newcombe started working at Clayton State in 1993. He began work as a COBOL programmer on the old student record system and by 2000 transitioned to what has become his current position as Director of Network and Enterprise Services.
He notes the most challenging aspect of his position is working to stay up to date and active in the IT field as well as keeping projects flowing and delegating tasks. He appreciates the wide variety of tasks that his department handles which can vary from hooking up classrooms, installing network cameras, or debugging a web site.
Newcombe grew up in Jonesboro but now resides with his wife of 19 years and their two daughters in McDonough. The family cares for their rescue dog Charlie, Christine the guinea pig, and any other animals his youngest might catch and bring home.
He has a strong passion for astronomy and hunting for deep-sky objects such as galaxies and nebula. He also enjoys science-fiction, but particularly post-apocalyptic fiction.
“It feels nice to be recognized because so much of what my department does is behind the scenes. Knowing some of the people who have been nominated this year and in the past puts me in a great group of people” says Newcombe.