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HR @ Your Service

Profile in Excellence: Anne Deveau

This is what you should know about Anne Deveau. Her colleagues adore her. She consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty. She is a pleasure to be around. No surprise, then, that Deveau, an administrative assistant II in the Department of Architecture, received the MIT Excellence Award for Serving the Client in 2007.

The annual MIT Excellence Awards are an opportunity to celebrate extraordinary staff like Deveau. "Part of our mission is to recognize and reward staff. MIT has one of the more robust rewards and recognition programs among our peer institutions," said Human Resources Vice President Alison Alden. "Participating in the Excellence Awards is a win-win for the nominator and the nominee."

It is a win-win because faculty and staff want to acknowledge the people who facilitate their work--and who wouldn't be appreciative of recognition? As Deveau said, "Support staff like myself often work with mostly faculty and/or students with few or no other support staff. By receiving the award I felt a sense of connection to my local MIT communities and beyond, such that I feel strengthened further to take on new projects."

Deveau felt this connection to the MIT community, and likewise, those who nominated her zeroed in on this.

"Her leadership advances the quality and life of the MIT community and our ability to function with the exemplary standards MIT is known to foster," said Joseph Hankins, Deveau's colleague.

This leadership includes direct support of three faculty in the department and assistance to seven faculty altogether. Deveau became involved with the Working Group on Support Staff Issues "to build her connections so she could serve faculty better," noted Hankins. Not surprisingly, her peers in the Working Group then selected her to be a co-convener.

Among her many accomplishments, Deveau spearheaded her own task force on peer resources, designed a web site, and managed communications issues for both individuals and the department. Another nominator, Professor Mark Jarzombek, said, "Anne helps us run the program so effortlessly because of her uncanny ability to adjudicate situations, to notice coherencies and incoherencies, and to respond appropriately."

It's no wonder that faculty outside of Deveau's department have what Jarzombek calls "Deveau envy." Thanks to the Excellence Awards, Deveau's colleagues were able to shine the light on one of their own.

Nominations for this year's Excellence Awards are due Oct. 17. For more information and to nominate someone, go to the MIT Excellence Awards website.

HR @ Your Service is a monthly column from Human Resources.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on September 26, 2007 (download PDF).

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