Awards and 
Appreciation Events

The Models of Excellence Award

The Models of Excellence program recognizes notable staff member accomplishments at Penn that reflect initiative, leadership, increased efficiency, and a deep commitment to service.

Standards of Excellence

These Standards of Excellence are used by the nominators and the Selection Committee to identify individual staff members or teams as Models of Excellence for their notable contributions to the mission of the University that go above and beyond performance and job expectations.

Call for 2016 Models of Excellence Nominations!


The Models of Excellence award program celebrates the extraordinary achievements of full- and part-time staff across the University’s schools and centers. Now is your chance to recognize these efforts. Nominations are being accepted now through October 29.

New this year, you have an easier, greener way to nominate the exceptional staff members you know by using this online application.

Click here to learn more about the process.

  • Supportive practices, procedures, and policies
    • Brings about significant positive change for the University’s mission.
    • Eliminates significant obstacles to achieving the University’s mission.
    • Resolves, in unique and/or novel ways, problems that impede progress.
  • Innovative and proactive leadership
    • Uses highly effective and/or novel practices to inspire and lead others to contribute constructively to the University’s mission.
    • Proactively identifies and resolves challenges that interfere with team/unit/school/center activities to further the University’s mission.
    • Encourages a coordinated effort by a complex group and facilitates the group’s ability to meet complicated goals.
  • Extraordinary service to key constituencies
    • Supports internal and/or external constituencies in ways that exceed expectations and result in unexpected and very positive outcomes that support the University’s mission.
  • Substantial cost-effectiveness
    • Identifies improvements to University practices, policies, and/or program designs that result in substantial cost savings or financial gain to the University while enhancing the organization’s ability to support the University’s mission.
  • Exemplary relationship building within and/or outside of the immediate organization
    • Develops and uses strong, constructive, and productive relationships that enable otherwise impossible goals to be met in support of the University’s mission.

The Nomination Process

Nominations for Models of Excellence awards are due in the fall for contributions made during the previous fiscal year (July 1–June 30). We seek nominations of significant achievements—above and beyond job and performance expectations—to model excellence for the campus. Please consider nominating a deserving staff member or team; we welcome nominations from any level of the organization, including self-nominations.

The nomination process is detailed, and all its components must be completed before the nomination can be accepted.

The Models of Excellence Nomination Guide provides all of the information you need to complete this process.

Follow these steps:

  1. Review the Nomination Guide.
  2. Complete the two components of the nomination application:
    1. Part 1:
      1. gather general nominee information
      2. write narrative
      3. submit online before October 29
    2. Part 2:
      1. request and collect requisite forms for each award type
      2. Send to before October 29


Questions? Call 215-898-1012 or contact us by email.

Selection and Notification

An annually rotating Models of Excellence Selection Committee reviews all nominations and selects the award winners. The committee is representative of the diversity of our institution, composed of Penn leaders (including the Provost, Executive Vice President, and Vice President of Human Resources), previous Models of Excellence award winners, and other faculty and staff members from across campus.

Once staff members are chosen for Models of Excellence recognition or accorded an Honorable Mention are notified in January, and the information is publicized broadly to the Penn community. Honorees are acknowledged at the spring Models of Excellence Award Ceremony.

Awards, Ceremony, and Reception

Models of Excellence winners receive $500.00 and a symbolic award. Extremely noteworthy staff member contributions receive Honorable Mentions and are awarded $250.00 and a symbolic award.

The next award ceremony and reception for honorees will take place on March 30, 2016 in Irvine Auditorium. All members of the Penn community are invited. More information will be provided as the date approaches.

Previous Honorees

2015 Models of Excellence Award Winners

Penn Green Campus Partnership Team: for above-and-beyond contributions of each team member in assisting in the achievement of integrating sustainability into coursework, community, and campus planning, design, and operations.

PennGreenCampus-400pxRay Aull, Business Services
Matthew Brown, Business Services
Joseph F. Campbell, Penn Law
Chloe Cerwinka, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Leandra Davis, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
Rafael de Luna, The Wharton School
Sarah Fisher, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Brent Friedman, Business Services
Joseph Gaither, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Daniel Garofalo, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Julian Goresko, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Tracy Hawkins, Business Services
Vira Homick, Business Services
Sara E. King, School of Arts & Sciences
Kimberly Kopple, School of Veterinary Medicine
Aldis Kurmis, School of Social Policy & Practice
Barbara Lea-Kruger, Business Services
Joel Mintzer, Business Services
Jennifer Mishkin, Perelman School of Medicine
Colleen Reardon, Business Services
Dan Schupsky, Division of Recreation & Intercollegiate Athletics
Heidi Wunder, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Andrew Zarynow, Facilities & Real Estate Services

Quaker Days Team: for the tireless work and unprecedented level of cooperation between University schools and centers to provide extraordinary service to our admitted students to encourage enrollment and to showcase student life at Penn.

QuakerDays-500pxKathleen Shields Anderson, Division of Public Safety
Jeffrey J. Barta, Business Services
Nathan A. Cockrum, Business Services
Sue Kauffman DePuyt, Provost's Center
Erin Doby, Business Services
Hilary Easley, Business Services
Ellen Eckert, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
John Eckman, Business Services
Paul Forchielli, Business Services
Liam Gingrow, Business Services
Rebecca Golpe, Business Services
Cherie Heller, Division of Public Safety
Derek Hunsberger, Business Services
Jonathan Katzenbach, The Wharton School
Pamela Lampitt, Business Services
Barbara Lea-Kruger, Business Services
Thomas MacDonald, Business Services
Michelle Majeski, Business Services
Justin C. Mazur, School of Arts & Sciences
Nancy McCue, Business Services
Sarah McFarlane, Business Services
Lou Metzger, Provost's Center
Martin Redman, College Houses & Academic Services
Yvonne Romero da Silva, Provost's Center
Michelle Ruggia, Business Services
Christian Sapp, Business Services
Marianne Smith, School of Nursing
Beth Tucker, Business Services
Gary Williams, Division of Public Safety

2015 Models of Excellence Honorable Mentions

ARCH Team: for collaborating on a solution to transform the Arts Research and Cultural House (ARCH) into a destination spot, bringing people together fostering cultural diversity, awareness, education and community.

ARCH-500pxSteve Becker, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Mark Breitenbach, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Ke Feng, Facilities & Real Estate Services
William Gipson, University Life
Thomas Hauber, University Life
David Hollenberg, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Pamela Lampitt, Business Services
Barbara Lea-Kruger, Business Services
Thomas MacDonald, Business Services
Rob Nelson, Provost's Center

Hoag Levins, The Wharton School: for his initiative and creativity in executing a comprehensive multi-media communication and Levins-300px
promotional program for the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics' Summer Undergraduate Minority Research (SUMR) program.

Singh Center for Nanotechnology Team:
for planning, designing and constructing a state-of-the-art nanotechnology facility that engages the local, national and global research community.

SinghCenter-400pxEd Benfold, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Michael Dausch, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Leandra Davis, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
David Hollenberg, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Christopher Kern, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Chris Montowski, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
Joseph Passante, Provost's Center
Roman Petyk, President's Center
Jennifer Wetzel, Facilities & Real Estate Services
Ira Winston, School of Arts & Sciences/School of Engineering & Applied Sciences/School of Design
Doug Yates, School of Engineering & Applied Sciences

Learn about former Models of Excellence honorees and view photo galleries of previous Models of Excellence Award ceremonies and receptions. Click here for more details.

Questions? Call 215-898-1012 or contact us by email.