College Awards

2013-14 College Awards and Retirees

Friends of the College

For photos from the awards ceremony, click here.

Ron Bend, Video Producer with the Division of External Relations at CSU

Ron Bend has been expertly telling the stories of our students, faculty, alumni, donors, and retirees in compelling videos for many years. In his calm and steady way, he makes people feel comfortable in front of the camera, and elicits warm and genuine statements when they share their experiences. We are always confident that Ron will capture our most important constituents in positive ways, often going out to film them in their own homes and workplaces. He has been the primary videographer for the Legacies Project, partnering with us to gather and honor the stories of College faculty emeriti and retirees. He is extremely responsive to feedback, and will put in lots of time fine-tuning the details to make sure everything is just right. Reliable, flexible, creative, and timely are words often used to describe Ron. He combines his technical knowledge with artistry to come up with video gems that are inspiring to our audiences. Thank you for all you do, Ron!

Lynn Johnson, Associate Vice President for Finance at CSU

In her role overseeing university financial operations, Lynn has supported the College in navigating the challenges of higher education funding and providing creative solutions that help us address the needs of a big college, while maintaining fiscal integrity. We have benefitted tremendously from our collaborations with her and recognize her support of efforts to build and renovate spaces in our College, including the new HES Teaching addition, managing facilities costs in our Early Childhood Center, and engineering best-practice accounting standards in budgets and purchasing. We look forward to Lynn’s continued help negotiating the complexities of the University’s financial landscape. We are grateful for all that Lynn does for CSU and especially recognize her very direct support of our College and its programs.

Columbine Health Systems

Accepting the award were Bob Wilson, Columbine’s Founder and CEO, and Yvonne Meyers, Health Systems director for Columbine, a human development and family studies alumna, and a member of our College’s Executive Leadership Council. Columbine Health Systems is an amazing friend to our college, and has been for a long time. Under Bob Wilson and Yvonne Myers’ leadership, and through their profound generosity, countless students in our college have embraced meaning in a career of working with older adults. Each semester, Columbine is a key internship site for students across our College, who are nurtured in best practice skills that are critical to their career paths. Each year, Columbine supports students through scholarships. And, for the past several years, Columbine has provided needed financial resources – as well as incredible prestige – to our Gerontology Interdisciplinary Minor. This funding has allowed the program to grow in enrollment this year. Bob and Yvonne, we could not be more grateful for the long-term support you have provided to us. We look forward to continuing to grow our friendship around our shared passion for taking care of aging people and their families in our community, and training the next generation of our workforce in gerontology.

Faculty, Staff, and Student Awards

  • Outstanding Teacher Award

    Mike O’Reilly
    Department of Construction Management

    As a special appointment faculty member, Mike teaches 32 credits each year with two sections of Structures 1 and 2 each semester, thus teaching every student in the CM program twice. Mike’s commitment to construction education and his students is evident by his ability to create an environment that promotes learning at CSU. For the past 12 years, he has taught construction management students some of the most technically challenging concepts of the program. Yet, repeatedly, students comment that although his courses are the most difficult, hands down he is one of the best instructors in the program. In fact, he was nominated by his students and received the department’s faculty of the year award four times in five years before he asked that his name be permanently withdrawn from student voting. Students still found a way to recognize him this year though, as one of six educators to receive this year’s Alumni Association Best Teacher Awards.

  • Outstanding Advisor Award

    Ryan Donovan
    Department of Health and Exercise Science

    Ryan joined the Department in 2007 as an Instructor and has taken on a variety of teaching, advising, and leadership roles since then. Due to Ryan's approachability, compassionate and energetic personality, and the more than 250 students he instructs in the classroom each semester, he is extremely sought after as an adviser. The quality of Ryan's advising can be demonstrated by the fact that his student advising evaluations are consistently among the highest in the department. Since 2008, 100 percent of student respondents said that they would recommend Ryan as an adviser to another student. Ryan not only advises students in his office, he also utilizes his classroom and laboratory experience as a teaching tool. In both his Freshman Seminar and his Health and Wellness courses, he advises students to stretch beyond what they thought was possible, visualize concepts, and apply educational information into practicum situations. Ryan is an effective, natural leader in the department who creates a relaxed, welcoming, and organized environment. He goes out of his way to make sure every undergraduate that he comes in contact with is comfortable, challenged, and motivated to not only learn, but to thrive.

  • Outstanding Engagement Award

    Campus Connections (formerly known as Campus Corps): a therapeutic mentoring program
    Department of Human Development and Family Studies

    Campus Connections is a highly-successful program that partners at-risk youth and families in Larimer County with CSU student mentors in a service learning experience. In 2008, Campus Connections was created in response to a Colorado House Bill that mandated a coalition of community leaders from mental health agencies, the judicial system, and universities to develop strategies to meet the needs of at-risk youth and their families. Larimer County lacked services for first-time offending youth in the juvenile justice system. Toni Zimmerman and Shelley Haddock responded to this local call to action by seeking and receiving funding to develop and implement a mentoring program on campus for at-risk youth. In the eight semesters since launching, approximately 1,000 youth have been served and approximately 1,300 students have participated as mentors, mentor coaches, interns, teaching assistants, and research assistants. Both graduate and undergraduate students from over 60 majors and graduate programs have participated as mentors. Campus Corps provides these CSU students a powerful opportunity to serve their community, engage in service-learning in an applied setting, and participate in significant leadership opportunities. Campus Corps also delivers a program that youth participants not only benefit from, but enjoy to participate in, because of the positive, encouraging, supportive, and engaging experience with caring mentors. And the partners in the juvenile justice system appreciate and delight in referring youth to this program. Given its incredible impact and success, stakeholders within and beyond our campus are working on multiple plans to sustain Campus Corps as a program that will remain long after the current grant comes to a close.

  • Superior Faculty Service Award

    David MacPhee
    Department of Human Development and Family Studies

    Throughout his career, Dave has made significant contributions to and held a substantial number of important and time-consuming service assignments at departmental, College, University, community, and national levels. He has gained the trust and respect of his colleagues by consistently performing these responsibilities with excellence, and by demonstrating integrity, grace, humility, and positivity as he navigates the complexities of many important and sensitive positions, such as chair of the Tenure and Promotion Committee since 2001. His term as chair of this committee has been extended several times. His colleagues said that in this role he is ‘simply phenomenal.’ He provides personal, careful, and meaningful mentorship to new and tenure-track faculty, steadfastly guiding them through the steps for tenure and promotion, and he produces a sense of inclusive, fair, and respectful representation for all involved in this important process. A mere glance at his curriculum vita reveals the sheer volume of service Dave has provided over the course of his career. But, what is more extraordinary—and what has earned him the confidence and esteem of his colleagues—is the way in which he performs this service. Dave brings an outstanding commitment, diligence, and attention to detail to each responsibility—large and small. His depth of personal character and his ample professional experience combine in allowing him to bring wisdom, fairness, and benevolence to his leadership and interactions.

  • Superior Staff Service Award

    Kristin Haller
    Department of Construction Management

    Kristin has been with the Department of Construction Management since 2008 serving as the Academic Counselor and Key Adviser from 2008 until 2011, at which time she began her current position as the Assistant to the Department Head and Graduate Program Adviser. Kristin is responsible for making sure the administration of the department occurs in an efficient, cordial, professional, and orderly fashion. She sets the standard for the office by exhibiting professionalism for all visitors, faculty, staff, and students, either in person, by phone, or electronically. Kristin's knowledge of University procedures and her interest to serve the faculty and the department has been crucial in preparing promotion and tenure dossiers, conducting searches, updating curricula, scheduling courses, establishing teaching loads, organizing CM Cares, administrating graduate admissions, and other vital duties required to manage the efficient running of the department. Kristin is knowledgeable, efficient and always willing to help others. She is a team player and her dedication, loyalty, and exceptional technical skills have served the department well. She has earned the respect of the faculty, staff, students, construction industry partners, and members of the CSU community. Her wide-ranging experience, superb work ethic, and willingness to assist in multiple areas have helped advance construction education at CSU. In addition to her strengths, Kristin brings the department professionalism, experience, and a "can do" attitude. She is committed to getting the job done and doing it right.

  • Tenure-Track Faculty Scholarly Excellence Award

    Laura Bellows
    Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition

    Laura is in her fourth year as an assistant professor and has established a national reputation for her work related to childhood obesity. Her work focuses on community-based interventions that promote healthy eating habits and physical activity patterns in early childhood audiences. For example, the Healthy Environments Study, which is currently under review at the USDA, is an integrated research, extension, and education project targeting preschoolers and their families with a long-term goal of reducing childhood obesity risk. Laura’s contributions to scholarship are closely aligned with the mission of the College and the department, and have earned her national recognition. In 2011, Laura received the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Technology, which is the highest honor bestowed on early career scientists and engineers by the U.S. government. Laura was one of 46 recipients across all governmental departments and agencies throughout the U.S. Laura’s record of accomplishments is outstanding.

  • Outstanding Senior Award

    Kinsey Kappeler
    Department of Design and Merchandising

    Kinsey is an Honors Program student studying interior design with a minor in Global Environmental Sustainability. She has completed all three years in the President’s Leadership Program, has presented research at multiple symposia as an Honors Undergraduate Research Scholar, and is currently the President of CSU’s International Interior Design Association. During her time as a CSU Ram, she has been involved all around campus, from being an Academic Village Crew Leader, to an alto saxophonist in the Marching Band, to the first chair violinist in CSU’s Orchestra. In addition, she has interned at the Institute for the Built Environment and served as research assistant in the Department of Design and Merchandising. One of Kinsey’s other most memorable and worthwhile experiences over the past four years was her international internship with a commercial design firm while studying Spatial Design abroad in Auckland, New Zealand, last year. Kinsey recently learned she has been accepted into the extremely competitive Masters of Architecture program at the Southern California Institute for Architecture. This program has received recent rankings as the number one best architecture school and program in the world, and Kinsey is planning to commence her graduate studies there next year.


  • Daryl Braden, Department of Health and Science
  • Loren Cordain, Department of Health and Exercise Science
  • Maria Puig, School of Social Work
  • Chuck Smith, Department of Construction Management
  • Deb Valentine, School of Social Work