Five DELTA staff members received Pride of the Wolfpack Awards at the DELTA staff meeting on Tuesday, September 29, 2015. Presented by Tom Miller, this award recognizes NC State employees for a special or unique contribution to their college, unit or the university as a whole. The award winners were nominated by coworkers who have witnessed the staff members’ dedication to their job and felt they should be acknowledged for going above and beyond what is expected. This year’s recipients are Bryan Aldridge, Arthur Earnest, Laurie Gyalog, Lou Harrison and Sherry O’Neal.
Bryan Aldridge, Operations and Systems Analyst
As the “true backbone of the DELTA Systems Team,” Aldridge keeps “DELTA’s IT infrastructure running so smoothly no one even realizes how much work goes on behind the scenes.” Aldridge, a DELTA staff member since February 2011, is acknowledged for his ability to handle the ever increasing storage needs DELTA may face and keeps a close watch on future trends, ensuring space will not become limited at an inopportune time. Aldridge has gained his VMWare certification over the past two years and has played a key role on the team that has “virtualized nearly all of the servers running DELTA services.” His work has helped make available hardware more efficient, eased the ability to add extra servers and has saved the university money. Aldridge is also heralded for his efforts in DELTA’s network administration and work in the Data Centers. His patience, hard work, dedication to his job and organization skills are highly valued by his co-workers. “His work is the gold standard to compare everyone else to,” said Dan Deter, Aldridge’s nominator.
Arthur Earnest, Technology Support Technician
According to fellow staff member John Gordon, Earnest, who began working with DELTA in 2008, was a great candidate for the Pride of the Wolfpack Award because of his notable efforts to “take on the challenge of every client for which he works.” Earnest “owns the problem and wrestles it into submission,” said Gordon. He is acknowledged for assisting a professor incorporate Skype in a DELTA recording classroom as well as his patience and determination in facilitating a multi-national class. In addition to these two accomplishments, Earnest has also produced “a complex backpacking course from beginning to end,” said Gordon. Because this course teaches about handling different seasons, weather and outdoor environments, Earnest filmed throughout the year, taking the necessary materials and gear into the woods during both hot and cold seasons. “[Earnest] would not compromise on the instruction and the quality of the course shows,” said Gordon. He is admired for his dedication, desire to learn and kind spirit.
Laurie Gyalog, Executive Assistant
Gyalog was nominated for the Pride of the Wolfpack Award because of her admirable leadership qualities and project coordination skills. She is described as a “go-getter” and constantly works to improve processes and communication between teams in the office. Gyalog, a permanent staff member since January 2014, conducts weekly check-in meetings for the Brand/Communication team. She took the initiative in creating a new intake form for her team, volunteering to be the main point of contact for the intake. Gyalog regularly teaches new employees and interns how to use the DELTA systems like project management and time reporting. Although clearly busy, she is valued for her multitasking abilities, positive attitude, willingness to answer questions and providing education and feedback whenever needed. “She connects the dots and is proactive while going above and beyond to make everyone feel welcome and part of the team,” said O’Neal.
Lou Harrison, Director of Educational Technology Services
Harrison is a deserving recipient for the Pride of the Wolfpack Award because of his dedication to his work both in the office and behind the scenes, as he has been with DELTA since its start. Harrison is most appreciated for his leadership qualities. He has initiated various projects such as a new home for DELTA’s disaster recovery plan, a true Control Objectives for Information and Related Technology (COBIT) process review, and interface changes to Wolfware after analyzing helpdesk calls. Harrison is also acknowledged for his work in negotiating a partnership with Unicon and Marist College, as DELTA ventures into the “world of Learning Analytics.” On his nomination, Petheridge applauds his leadership on the ETS team, which “[increases] the capacity and robustness of our IT infrastructure to provide excellent service to our customers while moving us forward on important projects as well.” Not only is he passionate about his work, Harrison is also “a master at organizing staff development activities” and constantly encourages his team and those around him. He meets with his staff regularly, provides feedback and is known for “constantly praising his staff and giving them credit for things that they do.”
Sherry O’Neal, Communications Specialist
A member of the DELTA team for only a few months, O’Neal has immediately made herself “an integral part” in a number of the DELTA branding and communications campaigns. She has also worked diligently and effectively to promote the DELTA Grants program. According to her co-worker Thomas Zack, O’Neal can be characterized as effective, inspirational, enthusiastic, and professional, but notes that these are just a few adjectives that define her “brief yet stellar career here in DELTA.”