The Jim Davis Award for Meritorious Service was awarded to Mark Reynolds and Lisa Walden last week for their outstanding work and service on The University of New Mexico’s Staff Council.
Reynolds is an associate director at Information Technologies and a member of the Council’s Events Committee, and Rules and Elections Committee. He also serves as the event coordinator for the Council’s annual Roadrunner Food Bank volunteer project in December. He has been working in higher education for the past 32 years, with 12 of those years at UNM.
“When I found out about the Staff Council, its charge, mission, and committees, I wanted to be part of this association. This reward is a reminder that a peer recognition is one of the, if not the most, important recognition you can receive as an individual and staff member. Volunteer organizations are built on people (staff) that care about the University and the importance of staff.”
Reynolds added that being part of the process brings staff together to accomplish their goals to better everyone’s experiences.
A a Grade 13 Staff Council Representative, Walden is the Marketing and Retail Division manager at the UNM Bookstore. She is co-chair of the Council’s Communication and Marketing Committee and is the event coordinator for the Council’s annual homecoming celebration.
“Staff Council is one of the most important and rewarding things I do on campus outside of my regular job,” Walden said. “Meeting and getting to know councilors and staff from all over the university is such a reward in itself. I think everyone in Staff Council has their own focus, their own skillset that they bring to the council, and those combined creates a great environment to understand staff issues from multiple angles and tackle different aspects of the lives of staff.”
In addition, Walden is considered the Council’s “guru” on Parliamentary Procedure because she qualified as a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians. She originally joined the Staff Council to volunteer with event planning, but soon found herself running for a seal on the council after discovering the benefits she could gain from being a part of the group.
Walden says she considers it an honor to be awarded the Jim Davis Award, adding “I’ve been working on the Communications and Marketing Committee for Staff Council for several years and I believe that committee has had a huge impact on the day-to-day running of Staff Council.
“We are working on ways to communicate more effectively with our constituents currently and I believe this can have an impact on all university staff by helping to develop more two-way communication and effectively let all staff know the projects, resolutions, and focuses for the Staff Council.”
Awarded by the UNM Staff Council, the Jim Davis Award for Meritorious Service was established in 1999, and is named after the late Jim Davis, who served as a Staff Councilor for more than five years on numerous committees and was the Council’s Speaker for four years. Davis was the first to receive the award and since then, it has been presented annually during the Staff Council Business meeting.