I want to reinforce an earlier announcement from Todd Nicolet about Brad Bednar’s recent receipt of an individual campus IT award. These awards started in 1992 when there were fewer than 100 IT support people on campus, and only 70 of them had IT classifications. It was a transitional time. The “IT person” in many campus units was someone with a general interest in computers and was largely self-taught. Today there are over 700 well-trained IT support professionals at Carolina who are eligible for these awards.
We have been fortunate at the School to attract talented people who provide us with great IT support, and they continue to get better and better. In addition to Brad Bednar, several of his colleagues were nominated this year for a campus IT award—Boriana Ditcheva, Random Gott, and Georgia Allen. They were deserving. Other members of our IT team have received individual awards in the past: James Balfour in 2009 and Bonnie Smyre in 2008 (before we were lucky enough to recruit her away from another campus unit).
The first nominations in 1993 “all had a similar theme: versatility and the willingness to go beyond the call of duty. This is a theme which carries forward even today.” That description certainly applies to Brad and his colleagues in our Information Technology Division. Todd referenced the major projects that Brad has been critically involved in supporting. They are important technical projects that required Brad’s vast technical knowledge and hard work. Here’s the part of the nomination for Brad that really resonated with me, however:
“Brad’s customer service skills are excellent. He has an incredible rapport with users. He keeps things light, putting people at ease. He never talks down to users and has a great knack for knowing when to joke with them. He deftly handles request after request while still performing complex and time consuming project work; all while never complaining.”
Brad is a terrific addition to the School and I am happy that his campus peers decided to honor him. He is a part of a great team led by Georgia Allen. It turns out that each of the winners in 1993 received a plaque, a congratulatory letter from Chancellor Paul Hardin, and a WUNC-FM umbrella. Congratulations, Brad. I hope you got an umbrella or an equally nice gift.