From baking birthday cakes and preparing pre-game meals to greeting visitors with a smile, Pat Smith, chief administrative assistant for the Washington University in St. Louis football team, makes it a priority to help all involved with the WUSTL football program feel special.
In recognition of her dedication to the success and support of WUSTL student-athletes, coaches and families, Smith was recognized with the Gloria W. White Distinguished Service Award in a May 21 Staff Day ceremony in Edison Theatre.
The award, which is presented annually and comes with a $1,000 prize, provides recognition to a nonacademic staff member for exceptional effort and contributions that have resulted in the betterment of the university.
During Smith’s more than 10 years with the football team, she has been “the glue that keeps our program together, in good times and bad,” a colleague said, noting Smith’s welcoming nature, ever-present smile and dedication to boosting morale of parents and players through her efforts and positive attitude.
During the season — among her many support activities for the football team — Smith organizes and hosts pregame meals for parents, coaches and players. She and her husband cart “hundreds of pounds of food and beverages out to the front of the Athletic Complex prior to every game, help prepare the food, and then visit with the parents prior to the game.” When the game is over, Smith continues to serve food and cleans up afterward.
For Smith, who joined WUSTL in 2001, her efforts don’t end with the offseason.
“Each year, we hold an end-of-season banquet that Pat organizes from the ground-up,” the colleague said. “Each one of our players receives individualized action photos that Pat has meticulously sorted through. This send-off for our seniors makes each and every one of them feel special.”
At the awards presentation, employees were recognized for 10, 15, 20, 26, 30, 35 and 40 years of service. For a list of employees honored for years of service, visit news.wustl.edu/news/Pages/23952.aspx.
After the ceremony, employees enjoyed a barbecue lunch in Bowles Plaza outside the Mallinckrodt Center.
At the lunch, the Office of Sustainability offered employees an opportunity to compost and recycle their waste — including leftover food, napkins, compostable dishware and soda cans — rather than throw them away.
Will Fischer, sustainability coordinator, estimates that approximately 420 pounds of waste was composted rather than sent to a landfill and 10-12 bags of soda cans, paper and other items were recycled, which resulted in a 95 percent waste diversion rate for the event.
“We wouldn’t have been able to divert so much waste from Staff Day without our partners on the Staff Day Committee, Dining Services and Facilities, and our enthusiastic volunteers,” Fischer says.
“Staff members, many of whom are members of the faculty and staff Sustainability Action Committee, and students donated their time to make the effort a success through staffing the event’s three Green Waste Stations, and many others helped by spreading the word to their co-workers.”
Afterward, outdoor activities included washers, which was won by Marie Byington and Christina Sanford of Student Health Services; and golf, which was won by Jason Patton and Mike Genthon (men’s), Christina Weyers and Luanne O’Shea (women’s), and Terri Nappier and Joe Angeles (co-ed).
The team from Resource Management won the softball tournament. Team members were Amber Ott, Brandon Hall, Caroline Kotowski, Chris Doyle, Dewitt Campbell, Gary Maus, Greg Parrott, Jeannine Cahill, Kris Smith, Peggy Smith, Ron Moses and Wesley Brooks.
Indoor activities included bingo and a volleyball tournament, which was won by Jayme Brown, Tiffany Oesch, Jana Holstein, Amy Raymond and David Sims, all of Medical Alumni & Development.
Many won prizes at Staff Day through drawings that afternoon.
David Sims won overnight accommodations with a breakfast for two at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Clayton. Sarah Sanning won a night’s stay at the Moonrise Hotel.
Amy Nordman and Larry Pyles each won four tickets to a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game.
Jason Marquart won two tickets for six Ovations Series events. Chris Goddard won 30 days of Health & Wellness and two personal training sessions at the Wellbridge Athletic Club in Clayton.
Pat Bierman won two round-trip domestic flight vouchers. Maureen Kleekamp and David Jolley won an apron and lawn chair gift set. Andrea Johnson won a dinner and movie gift-card pack.
Teri Dent and Kelcey Zutavern each won a $25 Cabela’s gift card, and Dan Szatkowski won a $50 Schnucks gift card.
Dena Conner, Jan Houf, Ron Jenkins and Julie Fugina each won a $25 gift certificate to the PF Chang’s, Cheesecake Factory, Starbucks and Fitz’s Bottling Co., respectively. Linda Poeppelmeier and Debbie Powell each won a $25 gift certificate to Ibby’s Bistro in the Danforth University Center.
Cindy Bugg, Kathy Schneider, Doneisha Snider and Lynnette Williamson each won lunch for four at the Anheuser-Busch Hall dining hall in the Knight Center. Terri Wise and Ann Marie Zeman won lunch for two at Whittemore House.