We are pleased and proud to announce that Linda Evans, Department Administrator for the English Department, has been selected as the first recipient of the Humanities Shining Star award. Linda manages in an exemplary manner the responsibilities of her complex position in the largest department in Humanities. In the words of the current department chair, Rosemary Hennessy, "...her steady professional demeanor, canny intelligence, and resourcefulness in all facets of this demanding job have continually impressed me. I have relied heavily on her expertise ... and I see us very much as collaborators in an administrative partnership.” Hennessy also notes that "Her expertise in some of the most delicate aspects of department administration has had a lasting impact on the department and the school."
Last year was especially challenging for Linda and the English department. Aside from several promotion and tenure and contract renewal dossiers, the department underwent an external review that included an extensive self-study report and a visit by the external review committee. Linda was involved in all aspects of this process and her performance in managing the research, staff, compilation of materials and the final report, as well as all the pieces related to the external reviewers visit was outstanding. The department was also without a graduate student administrator for some time last year and Linda stepped up to fill many aspects of that role as well as her own. In addition, Linda has promoted both calm and evolving competence, serving on the department's web committee and helping to launch a new and much improved web site that gives the department's faculty and students greater visibility inside and outside the hedges.
Linda has been, and continues to be, an important staff leader in Humanities, serving on numerous staff committees and taking the lead on several projects. She gives freely and generously of her time and can be counted on to pitch in to serve students, faculty and staff needs alike. She has been a mentor to several new staff members and a wise counsel to those of us who need to work out problems or interpret policies. It is obvious to all that Linda cares deeply about Rice students as well as our faculty and staff and that affection and respect is returned to her. Linda Evans is a stellar example and role model for all staff in Humanities and Rice at large and she is truly deserving of our first annual Shining Star award.
This is the first year of our new, staff-created annual award. It recognizes one School of Humanities staff member for outstanding work and overall performance in an academic year. The School of Humanities Shining Star “traveling trophy” resides in the office of the award recipient for the year, The recipient is also given certificate and small cash prize, and the recipient’s name is added to a plaque to be placed in the Humanities building foyer that recognizes all award winners. A committee comprised of the Dean, Associate Dean, Assistant Dean and the past year's award recipient review nominations and select the winner. As this is the first year of this award, Rachel Boyle, a Centennial Star Award winner, sat on the committee that selected Linda Evans. Both faculty and staff in the School of Humanities may nominate staff for this award. Nominees have been employed in the School for at least two years (as of July 1 of the nomination year). The request for nominations went out to all Humanities faculty and staff in late September/ early October. Look for the announcement in Fall 2018 and show your appreciation for our outstanding staff!