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Testimonials for the 2003 Infinite Mile Award Winners

William M. Burke, Jr., Electronic Design Group Leader, Plasma Science & Fusion Center: “Bill persists in finding ways to communicate with everyone and exhibits great patience and kindness in his dealings with students and staff.” “Bill insists on continually broadening his knowledge of electronic engineering and working long hours to complete projects and bring the latest technology into the group. He spends many hours of his own time learning about complex new components so that the PSFC can benefit from the use of them and generously spreads his latest knowledge to others.”


Valerie Censabella, Divisional Administrator, Plasma Science & Fusion Center: “Valerie is the nexus for our research project.... Valerie volunteers her time to organize the educational outreach at the lab, organizing tours as well as the hands-on exhibits that go to American Physical Society conventions for students and teachers.” “She does all of this ... while maintaining an incredibly positive can-do attitude and cheerful, even-tempered disposition.” “Her helpful and caring attitude is a wonder and wonderful.”


Frederick I. Crowley, Assistant Controller, Controller’s Accounting Office: “He is among the few ... employees of an MIT central service organization who work not only to develop their professional expertise to high levels and to optimize the functions of their own organizations, but who go well beyond that by cultivating a deep understanding of the core research and educational missions of MIT....” “Whenever we call him for clarification of a particular issue, he will chuckle and find a ray of humor before launching into a helpful and intelligible explanation. Fred is respected nationally for his knowledge of tax law and financial matters.” “Fred’s wry sense of humor and warm and friendly manner make it a pleasure to deal with him on even the dullest and most frustrating issues.”


Patricia Cunningham, Manager, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences & Technology Headquarters at Harvard Medical School: “Patty’s 22 years at MIT have been characterized by consummate professionalism, continuously creative thinking, unfailing loyalty, and a commitment to making the academic experience a positive one for everyone involved.... Her knowledge and ... experience have elevated her to the position of ‘All Things HST’ from the students’ perspective, so much so that many HST alumni continue to return seeking her assistance in navigating the two schools from a faculty point of view.”


Deborah Douglas, Science & Technology Collections Curator, MIT Museum: “She conceptualized, researched, designed and oversaw installation of the permanent exhibition Mind and Hand: The Making of MIT Scientists and Engineers.” “... Debbie has worked tirelessly on the project ... [and] takes the time to keep other staff informed and interested....” “I have had few colleagues who have shown such integrity, dedication, creativity and true relish for their work, coupled with a sincere interest in their co-workers and willingness to always be available and helpful to them.”


Barbara Engel, Administrative Officer, Whitaker College of Health Sciences & Technology: “Barbara Engel exemplifies ... MIT’s greatest resource—its people. Her willingness to give of herself without any need for personal recognition or approval is one of her many qualities that lead to her successes.” “Students and safety representatives from other departments, labs, and centers are always welcome to participate in her monthly safety meetings.... This collaborative effort serves a model for effectively addressing environmental, health and safety issues at the Institute.” “Faculty and staff enjoy working with Barbara. She has a gentle and very effective way of communicating with people.”


G. Donna Faubert, Assistant Financial Officer, Haystack Observatory: “She is discrete, reliable, and honest—a true professional. She can locate any needed bit of fiscal information in seconds. Donna could easily qualify for an award solely on the basis of the high standards she brings to her work.” “Donna Faubert has also used her vast knowledge of the Observatory and how it works to smooth the way for new employees....”


Edward Fitzgerald, Research Engineer, Plasma Science & Fusion Center: “Ed brings to the table a ‘can do’ attitude backed by a lifetime of experience.... We look to Ed for innovation, advice, and his famous words, ‘Sure, we can do that!’” “He has mentored many and is never reluctant to share his knowledge, experience, and often his own time with colleagues, students and anyone who needs help.” “...personal responsibility, integrity, and honesty are often undervalued and frequently hard to find. Of all the things that make me proud to know Ed Fitzgerald, these are the greatest.”


Leslie Hopper, Animal Resource Manager, Division of Comparative Medicine: “Researchers at MIT know Leslie best for her exceptional problem solving abilities, and for her memorable orientations for new investigators, postdocs and research technicians.” “Perhaps Leslie’s most remarkable achievement has been her recent seamless transition into the role of Manager.... Leslie, without the support of an Assistant Manager to help with daily tasks, rebuilt her team and provided the focus, strength and stability needed to maintain the high quality research program at MIT.” “Her competency, grace and good humor during these challenging circumstances earned her further admiration and respect from her colleagues at MIT.”


Maureen Howard, Personnel Staff Assistant, Research Laboratory of Electronics: “Maureen’s grace under pressure is exemplary.... She can be relied upon to go above and beyond what is necessary and has drawn rave reviews and earned the confidence of a very discerning audience, the RLE Faculty, which is no small achievement.... She does an absolutely splendid and professional job and we rely on her immensely....” “Maureen carefully guides newcomers through the intricacies of life at MIT and presents a reassuring voice on matters from health insurance to parking stickers....”


Glenda Inciong, Administrative Assistant, Division of Comparative Medicine: “She is always willing to provide extra effort to ensure things go right whether that means staying late, making phone calls from home in the evening or on weekends, or having her email forwarded to her while on vacation. She shows a genuine concern for her job responsibilities and works diligently to provide exemplary service.” “She is an excellent employee and a superb example to others.”


Cindy LeBlanc, Administrative Assistant, Research Laboratory of Electronics: “She has considerable responsibilities for a wide range of duties and shows exceptional qualities in all aspects of her job.” “...Cindy has been a generous friend, a patient counselor, and, in many respects, a parent away from home, to many [students] in the research group.” “Cindy’s dedication to her work and her devotion to the research group go way beyond the call of duty. I cannot think of another person among all that I have met at MIT who has labored more anonymously and is more deserving of recognition than Cindy.”


Helen-Marie Quinn, Administrative Secretary, Sea Grant College Program: “ReRe has the uncanny ability of anticipating program needs and plans well in advance to deliver what is needed. Everything she does meets the very high professional standards that one expects from their office staff members. I would easily place her at the top 1% of her peers.” “I will not be exaggerating if I say that part of my success at MIT I owe to ReRe, who is always there to help when help is needed.”


Thomas Quinn, Facilities Manager, Whitaker College of Health Sciences & Technology: “He played a major role in setting up the headquarters for the ISN and in helping us meet an extraordinarily tight deadline for the renovations of space in Technology Square to house the sponsor-mandated ISN Dedicated Facility.... Tom has accomplished this with diligence, persistence, and with great attention to the needs of the faculty and staff, while being mindful of the use of Institute resources.” “He never hesitates ... to take on a new task.” “Tom is very pleasant and makes you feel like you are his first priority.” “It is common for people to ask if Tom might be able to help them on an ongoing basis.”


Laura Rose, Administrative Assistant/Graduate Admissions Coordinator, Operations Research Center: “Laura is superb, and dominates others we have worked with in this capacity. She is, in MIT’s parlance, a ‘star.’” “ORC faculty, students and staff all know that Laura is the person to approach when an especially tough question arises.” “She has the expertise ...the superb problem solving skills ... [and] the will to get the job done, even if she experiences some hardship along the way.” “Laura’s extraordinary commitment, efficiency, expertise, loyalty and kindness make the OR Center and MIT better places.”


Krista Van Guilder, Media Specialist, Research Laboratory of Electronics: “Krista is one of RLE and MIT’s most outstanding employees.” “She has impressed me tremendously with the outstanding quality of her work, her attention to detail, her creativity, and her ability to go the infinite mile to do things to artistic perfection.” “The fact that MIT’s central web services organization entrusts the Institute’s home page not once, but repeatedly on an ongoing basis, to Krista is convincing verification of her special talents.” “She is a delight as a colleague, an inspiration as an employee, and exemplifies the very best of what makes MIT a special place to be.”


William Whitney, Administrative Assistant, Office of the Vice President for Research and Associate Provost: “Bill is a person of rare professional and intellectual qualities. Bill’s dedication to MIT shows in his willingness to routinely go the extra mile.” “Bill is one of those rare individuals who can see clearly through a complex problem and bring organization and action to its solution. Bill also possesses infinite patience with those who call in a state of high anxiety or emotional distress.” “He always seems to be the calm in the middle of the storm, ready to help out in any way he can. He is keenly aware of deadlines and the frantic need to do too many things at the same time.” “We admire and applaud his dedication and multiple talents.”