PULLMAN, Wash. — Three Washington State University employees have been named winners of the 1998 WSU President’s Employee Excellence Awards.
Selected by WSU President Samuel Smith upon recommendation of the President’s Employee Excellence Awards Committee, are Eadie Balint, program coordinator, International Programs/Education Abroad section; Daniel Caldwell, Farm Shop/Compost Center manager, Animal Sciences; and Vicki Ruddick, secretary supervisor, Civil & Environmental Engineering.
“Their dedication represents the outstanding efforts of WSU staff across the state,” said Smith. “I’m proud of each of them.”
During a public awards reception 11 a.m.-noon on Wednesday, March 25, in the Lewis Alumni Centre, Smith will present each winner with an individual award plaque and a $1,000 check, provided by the WSU Foundation. Following the reception, Smith will hold a private luncheon in the Compton Union Building for the award winners, their supervisors and others.
The award ceremony is timed to help celebrate the date — March 28, 1890 — when the university was founded.
The names of all President’s Employee Excellence Award winners are displayed on a plaque in a showcase on the third floor of WSU’s French Administration Building in Pullman.
This is the ninth year for the annual honors. Classified staff and administrative/professional employees at WSU locations across the state were nominated. Ken Spitzer, a College of Sciences assistant dean, chairs the selection committee.
Selection is based on the employee’s work, including creative and innovative problem-solving, efficiency and productivity, and their contributions to an improved work environment.
Balint, who started at WSU in 1991, is praised for her interaction and communication with university students from different countries and cultures as well as students seeking to study abroad. Her organizational and task-oriented skills allows her to handle multiple deadlines, a heavy work load and produce high quality work, according to her nomination. Nominators say she is “…one of the most dedicated, conscientious, competent, productive, energetic and creative employees in the WSU community!”
Caldwell, with WSU since 1973, has been challenged by numerous program changes in Animal Sciences and budget reductions resulting in personnel and funding losses. His “positive attitude, willingness to listen and implement new ideas,” says his nominators, has allowed Caldwell and his employee “team” to respond to challenges and successfully complete many diverse projects at the university. In addition, the success of the WSU Compost Center, which recycles campus organic waste, and its operation is a credit to Caldwell’s “vision and innovative ability.”
Ruddick, employed by WSU since 1979, is complimented by her nominators for having professional work habits, competence and “genuinely warm personality” which has “earned her the complete respect” of Civil and & Environmental Engineering administrators, students, faculty and staff. The cross-training of her “team” of employees is an example of her innovation and problem solving. Such training allows team members to take on other’s duties when work overload or illness might otherwise interfere.

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