Tarleton announces 2017 university-wide staff employee award recipients



STEPHENVILLE (April 28, 2017) — Tarleton State University has announced its 2017 staff employee awards at the university-wide level to recognize outstanding staff contributions within four award categories.

This year’s recipients are Lori LaRue, Clint Dennard, Alana Hefner and Kent Styron. Each award winner received a crystal trophy, a $1,500 prize and an additional day of paid leave.

Recipients of the four awards—Impact, Enhancing the Student Experience, Horizon and Quality Service—were recognized during a recent banquet held in their honor, along with six honorees receiving this year’s university-wide faculty awards.

The Impact Award recognizes staff who display outstanding problem solving, resourcefulness and innovation to reduce university costs and improve safety.

The Enhancing the Student Experience Award recognizes staff whose roles do not involve teaching, but who directly and significantly contribute to the student learning experience. The award recognizes extraordinary efforts to increase student success and provide inspiration and innovation in enhancing the student experience.

The Horizon Award recognizes staff who volunteer time or resources to better their community, build and maintain relationships that extend Tarleton’s reputation and impact, or are active members of an organization that provides students with community leadership and service opportunities.

The Quality Service Award recognizes staff who “go the extra mile,” exhibiting outstanding dedication to Tarleton and their position, while maintaining a positive attitude and demonstrating exemplary service.

Recipients of this year’s Staff Employee Awards presented by Tarleton State University include (l-r) Director of Risk Management and University Compliance Officer Kent Styron, Director of Career Services Alana Hefner, Fine Arts Center Operations Manager Lori LaRue and Clint Dennard, advisor and program manager of community outreach at Tarleton-Waco. Also pictured is Tarleton President F. Dominic Dottavio, who presented the awards during the awards banquet and dinner on April 18.

This year’s university-wide staff award recipients are:

Ms. Lori LaRue – Impact Award
Lori Larue, operations manager for the Clyde H. Wells Fine Arts Center, is well-known for working tirelessly behind the scenes to schedule, promote and supervise operations of the center. LaRue uses her organizational skills, strong work ethic and commitment to Tarleton to host approximately 550 events annually. Her colleagues indicate she consistently steps in to provide resources and solutions. LaRue has efficiently balanced the Fine Arts Center’s income and expenditures by encouraging community use through rental programs. As a result, additional revenue was dedicated to new cork flooring in the recording studios. She also is dedicated to event management and safety, and her constant commitment to compliance, protocols, evacuation procedures and training of student technical crews ensures an effective team is ready if a safety matter arises.

Mr. Clint Dennard – Enhancing the Student Experience Award
Clint Dennard, advisor and program manager of community outreach at Tarleton-Waco and a Tarleton alumnus, repeatedly shares his love for the university by working with students in transformative ways. His colleagues describe him as an engaging staff member and instructor whose personal story resonates and inspires students. His commitment to students was evident in his desire to develop and implement the Waco Diplomats Program, a student leadership and service program that expands opportunities and experiences available to students. Dennard is a community liaison dedicated to recruiting and using every opportunity to connect students to real-world research experiences. He has a “Bleed Purple” persona, which helps students achieve academic success, gain access to valuable career opportunities and make Tarleton a better place.

Ms. Alana Hefner – Horizon Award
Colleagues describe Alana Hefner, director of career services, as an individual with an encouraging smile, positive attitude and exemplary professionalism, who uses her character to influence students in positive ways. Hefner’s commitment to every student she serves is evident in her efforts to advise and place students within the community. She actively volunteers as a member of the Cross Timbers Society of Human Resource Management, Chamberlin Elementary Parent/Teacher Organization and Rose Lafferty & Flora Foust Educational Fund selection board. She recently competed in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Dancing with the Stars competition as a charity fundraiser.

Mr. Kent Styron – Quality Service Award
Kent Styron, director of risk management and university compliance officer, approaches every situation with a calm and positive demeanor, always genuinely concerned for those he assists. Over the years, he has taken on increasing duties to provide a safe campus for students, faculty and staff, without reservation or complaint. His commitment to Tarleton and unwavering integrity permeate his work. In the past year, Styron led the university in establishing concealed carry rules and procedures. Although a difficult assignment, he did this with civility and integrity. He listened and considered the views on all sides of this emotionally charged topic, while keeping policies within state statutes and system guidance. Styron has been instrumental in supervising the university’s expansion of Title IX-related initiatives and growing resources to comply with federal regulations.

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