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Congrats to our Roadrunner Shoutout of the Week winners

These exceptional faculty, staff and student employees are shining examples of dedication, innovation and excellence.

By Josie Lavender

December 16, 2021


Nominations continue to roll in for Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Roadrunner Shoutout of the Week awards, highlighting the excellent and important work happening at all levels of the University. This week, we celebrate three members of our University community who inspire students and their colleagues.

“Especially during this hectic time of year, it’s important to stop and recognize those consistently going above and beyond to support their fellow Roadrunners,” said Michael Benitez, Ph.D., vice president for the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. “This week’s winners are a bright source of inspiration among the Roadrunner community.”

Jean-Francois Duclos, Ph.D.Faculty winner – Jean-François Duclos, Ph.D., associate professor of Modern Languages

Nominated by Keah Schuenemann, Ph.D., professor of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, on behalf of the office of Curriculum, Academic Effectiveness and Policy Development, who wrote:

“I am nominating Professor Jean-François Duclos, Ph.D., for his service. Jean-François Duclos is the chair of the CLAS curriculum committee. The committee sees hundreds of curriculum proposals, and they discuss any shortcomings or errors in the proposals before a decision is made to approve or disapprove. Jean-François then emails the curriculum-proposal originator with comments and navigates these edits with the originator. Through his participation in Canvas training, Jean-François and his team have helped the faculty of CLAS perfect their curriculum proposals before they are entered into the catalog. Beyond this, Jean-François has previously led the Faculty Senate Curriculum Committee in past years, as well as took the lead in organizing the renovation of the oral-communication student learning outcomes as part of a General Studies renovation task force. His calm and polite demeanor make him easy to work with, and his expertise in curriculum is widely appreciated. I imagine his attention to detail has saved us hours upon hours in the later levels of review.”

Jean-François, MSU Denver students (and your faculty colleagues) are so grateful to have a forward-thinking professional of your caliber here at MSU Denver. Thank you for helping provide Roadrunners a best-in-class higher-education experience.  

Jeremy VanHooserStaff winner – Jeremy VanHooser, Diversity Programs coordinator, Office of Diversity and Inclusion

Nominated by Michael Benitez, Ph.D., vice president of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, who wrote:

“I can’t say enough about Jeremy’s contributions to the important diversity work that goes on at MSU Denver. Jeremy goes above and beyond his role to assist and assure that some MSU Denver diversity programs are executed with the highest quality. Since my arrival here two years ago, I have observed Jeremy lead/co-lead planning and coordination of the Rachel B. Noel Distinguished Visiting Professorship, the Latinx Graduation Ceremony, the Higher Education Diversity Summit and the First Annual EDI Report for the University, among others. In addition, he assists with and contributes to the success of the Richard T. and Virginia M. Castro Distinguished Visiting Professorship, the Tenure Track Supper Club and the Music and Race Music Social Justice Series. Jeremy is one of the most dependable, caring, thoughtful and astute professionals I have had the privilege to work with in my career. Even during this difficult pandemic, Jeremy makes it a priority to assure the success of our efforts. His attention to and deep knowledge of programming and technology are invaluable assets to the MSU Denver campus community.”

Jeremy, there are no words to fully express the impact your hard work and diligence have had on the Roadrunner community. Thank you for consistently giving your all to support students and colleagues.

Johanna ZimberoffStudent-employee winner – Johanna Zimberoff, software specialist in Academic Advising Technology Services

Nominated by Gabriel Grinsteiner, coordinator of Academic Advising Technology Services, who wrote:

“Johanna is a dedicated, kind and bright employee. Her communication skills are superlative, and she is great at self-direction and team-building. Johanna is studying Psychology, and she puts her studies to great use helping students and staff (something she loves, and it shows). Johanna has been a great asset and friend to our team over the past year. We’re lucky and grateful to have her!”

Johanna, we’re so grateful you’ve chosen to be a part of the Roadrunner community along your academic journey. Thank you for all the time and energy you’ve invested into enhancing the Roadrunner experience for your peers.

To nominate outstanding employees for the Roadrunner Shoutout of the Week award, please complete the form on the Roadrunner Shoutout of the Week webpage. Tell us how your nominee is making an impact through great teaching, service to students or innovation. Winners will be selected each week and profiled in the Early Bird on Thursdays. Winners will also get a shoutout on social media.

Topics: Award, CADRE, Excellence, Roadrunner Shoutout

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