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President Liebowitz welcomes the Middlebury community to the annual Staff Recognition Awards.

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College Recognizes Staff Members for Excellence on the Job

June 11, 2015

MIDDLEBURY, Vt. — Four members of the staff at Middlebury College were honored as the 2015 recipients of the Staff Recognition Awards at a lunch reception and ceremony on June 9 in McCullough Student Center. 

Nominated by their peers and selected by a committee of previous recipients of the award were Joanne Leggett, coordinator of the Alumni Admissions Program and special projects in the admissions office; Donna McDurfee, administrative coordinator of Academic Affairs; Kevin Norton, team leader for General Services; and Darren Zeno, Bread Loaf chef and member of Dining Services. 

The annual award recognizes excellence on the part of staff members in four areas: leadership, stewardship, attitude, and community service. It was established through the generosity of Rudolf K. Haerle, Jr., professor emeritus of sociology, to honor outstanding members of the Middlebury College staff. 

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From left: Kevin Norton, President Liebowitz, Rudolf Haerle, Jr., Joanne Leggett, Donna McDurfee, and Darren Zeno.

Joanne Leggett was recognized for her deep institutional knowledge, as well as her sense of humor, energy, and superior organizational skills. Said one of her recommenders, “Her core values about how we treat each other serve as a model for us all. In her 42 years at the College, Leggett has served in the Registrar’s Office, in the Academic Administration, the Arts, and Student Affairs.

Donna McDurfee, whose dedication and work have been essential to the Academic Administration, was lauded for her professionalism. “From overseeing the appointment and reappointment of faculty, to scheduling faculty reviews, to processing leaves and running faculty elections, your administrative skills touch nearly everyone on the academic side of the institution,” said President Ron Liebowitz.

Kevin Norton was presented with an award for his positive attitude and leadership as a member of the General Services team. Working on countless campus events, moving staff and faculty offices, and carrying heavy equipment, Norton was praised for “setting high standards and showing the way to others,” and getting work “done right and on time.”

Darren Zeno was applauded for his effective leadership at Atwater Dining Hall and on the Bread Loaf campus. “You demonstrate the initiative, resourcefulness, and patience so your Dining Services colleagues will work together to provide our students and guests with a fine dining experience every single day,” said Liebowitz. “With your superb attitude you show everyone that we can get the job done well – and have a little fun while doing it!”

After presenting each recipient with an award, Liebowitz gave a "fifth award" to all Middlebury staff in expression of his gratitude. “This will be the last of these recognition awards that I will be part of," remarked Liebowitz. "I try as best as I can to convey my great thanks and appreciation to all the staff and faculty members who make this the best place to work that I could ever imagine.”