The University of Arkansas at Little Rock Staff Senate honored three of its staff members for excellence in the areas of service to the university, community service, and personal growth.
Heather Reed, director of student retention initiatives, has received the Ben Fry Service to UA Little Rock Award. Additionally, Kelly Rigby, project coordinator, has received the Staff Achievement Award for Community Service. Tina Medlock, director of communications at William H. Bowen School of Law, has received the Staff Achievement Award for Personal Growth.
“The Staff Senate are very excited for our annual Years of Service Awards,” Staff Senate President Cody Henslee said. “Chancellor Drale was kind enough to expand this year’s top category awards to $3,000 over our previous year’s $2,000 per category. We are delighted to be able to honor members of our staff for all of their hard work and to afford them an award of this value as a token of our appreciation and support for their continued contributions to UA Little Rock.”
The three winners will receive a $3,000 award distributed via payroll distribution.
More info about the Staff Achievement Award winners:
Ben Fry Service to UA Little Rock Award
Heather Reed, director of student retention initiatives and leader of the CARE Team, has received the 2021 Ben Fry Service to UA Little Rock Award.
The award recipient is described to be an individual who is distinctive in service through committees, special events, implementation of creative ideas or support and encouragement of others.
“Heather is a caring, dedicated, creative problem-solver, and strategic builder of support networks to help students thrive at UA Little Rock,” said Dr. Daryl Rice, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs. “She exemplifies the ideals of the Ben Fry Service Award. I am honored to recommend her.”
A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Reed has 20 years of experience helping students succeed in college drawing on her time in housing/residence life, learning communities, crisis management, mentoring, judicial affairs, first-year experience, and success coaching.
She has served as an assistant dean at UA Little Rock and now focuses on building and leading the SRI team. Reed is passionate about student success/retention and believes in reducing barriers for students to achieve success.
A colleague of Heather’s writes that the team she is “not just supporting the students, but also supporting one another – forming a community of care that touches all levels of the organization.”
Staff Achievement Award for Community Service
Kelly Rigby, project coordinator at the William H. Bowen School of Law, has received the 2021 Staff Achievement Award for Community Service.
This award recipient is described as an individual who has been particularly successful in organizing community events or had major achievements in civic, service, or specialty organizations/events.
“At least twice a week, Kelly tells me about a function or event happening in support of a local nonprofit,” said Ashley Nipp, alumni and development associate. “She advocates for causes she believes in and has demonstrated success in organizing community events. An exemplary event, Little Rock Zoo Wild Wines, was voted the best fundraising event in the state by AY Magazine readers. Kelly is the chair for this spectacularly successful event for the second consecutive year, previously holding the position of vice chair for two years and a committee member in 2015.”
Wild Wines is the largest fundraiser that supports the Arkansas Zoological Foundation, the nonprofit organization raising funds for the growth and development of the Little Rock Zoo. More than 1,500 participants are expected to attend this year’s event on April 26 and 27. The funds will be used to help build a new conservation and play area at the Little Rock Zoo’s education building.
“Lucie’s Place is another organization where Kelly dedicates her time and energy to foster a more inclusive, welcoming community within Little Rock,” Nipp said. “Lucie’s Place has a mission to ensure lifelong acceptance, stability, and success for LGBTQ young adults experiencing homelessness in Central Arkansas. Kelly has served for three years as a member of the organization’s advisory group, helping to plan and execute fundraising events such as the annual Lucie’s Place Cabaret at The Studio Theatre and the Drag Benefit for Lucie’s Place at South on Main.”
In addition to the Little Rock Zoo and Lucie’s Place, Rigby is an active member of planning committees for multiple events for other community organizations, including the annual Garden Party for Planned Parenthood and the Cattle Barron’s Ball in support of the American Cancer Society.
Staff Achievement Award for Personal Growth
Tina Medlock, director of communications at William H. Bowen School of Law, has received the Staff Achievement Award for Personal Growth.
The award winner is described as an individual whose scholarship, research, or creative talent has been particularly outstanding.
Theresa Beiner, dean of Bowen, described the enthusiasm that Medlock applies to her position.
“Tina first voluntarily assumed the Law School’s communications duties while also maintaining another job at the Law School,” Beiner said. “She eventually was officially placed in the position of Director of Communications. With a background in expository and technical writing, Tina is entirely self-taught in a variety of social media platforms and other communications software and systems. In the last year, she made a major pivot to increase our visibility virtually due to the pandemic. She is well-qualified for this award based on growth in skills and creativity she has shown over the past several years.”
In the past year, Medlock completed the Digital Marketing Certificate Program with UA-Pulaski Tech and Facebook.