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05/12/2015
Hudson Valley Community College Faculty and Staff Receive 2015 SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence

MEDIA CONTACT: Eric Bryant (518) 629-8072
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Monday, May 11, 2015

Eleven faculty and staff members from Hudson Valley Community College were named recipients of the prestigious SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence for 2015. Instituted in 1972 by the State University of New York, the Chancellor's Award recognizes exceptional contributions to the university by dedicated professionals. Since its inception, 154 faculty and staff members from Hudson Valley Community College have received the Chancellor's Award.

George Hastings of Lansingburgh has been employed at the college since 2008 as a custodian in Brahan Hall and the Fitzgibbons Health Technologies Center. Hastings, who received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Classified Service, was praised for his outstanding work ethic and his ability to recognize and address student, staff and faculty concerns. Fellow employees noted that he is committed to giving the best possible service to the college.

Erin Hatter of Troy the college’s scheduling officer, received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. She is charged with setting course schedules and class locations across campus and at the college’s off-campus locations. Hatter was recognized for her ability to problem-solve and effectively and efficiently find solutions to a wide range of issues related to her position. Hatter also is very active on campus, serving as co-chair of the Staff Development Day and on the Commencement Committee and Women’s Enterprise@HVCC. She also is an adjunct faculty member, teaching psychology and College Forum.

William Jojo, Jr. of Cambridge received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service. He has served the college for 25 years and currently oversees a staff of seven maintaining the college’s computer networks and servers. Jojo has been responsible for implementing many of the updates that have continually kept the college on the forefront of technology. He co-chairs the college’s Information Security Committee and also serves as an adjunct instructor in the Computing and Information Science Department.

Julie Panzanaro of Averill Park, who received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service, has been a part of the college’s Admissions Office for more than 25 years and has continually worked to maintain a high level of service to the college’s prospective students. She has been active in the State University of New York College Admissions Professionals (SUNYCAP), where she served a term as president, and the Capital District Counseling Association.

As director of institutional services and events, Zachary Yannone of Rensselaer is responsible for a huge number of events, both large and small, that the college hosts every day. Yannone, who received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service, oversees large events such as the annual Garden and Flower Show and hundreds of smaller meetings and gatherings for outside organizations. Those who nominated him for the Chancellor’s Award noted his ability to maintain a high level of customer service as well as an unflappable professionalism.

Mary Evans of Saratoga Springs received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. She has been a full-time faculty member at the college since 2000, teaching English composition classes and literature classes both in a classroom setting and online. Current and former students supporting Evan’s nomination noted her innovative use of technology and her ability to link centuries-old literature to the present-day world.

Eileen Mahoney of Delmar received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. She has been a faculty member in the Teacher Preparation for 35 years and has guided hundreds of students through the Early Childhood program. Mahoney also serves as the advisor to the Early Childhood Club and has been involved in numerous campus committees.

Mary Elizabeth Hampshire of Troy received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. She has been a faculty member at the college since 2003. Hampshire has taught a wide variety of math courses, from remedial math to differential equations, and has also designed three new courses for the department during her tenure. She was recognized by nominators for her enthusiasm and her commitment to student success.

Elizabeth Riccio of Delmar began her career at the college in 1986 and has been active in creating one of the most respected dental hygiene programs in the country. As a faculty member, she has recommended changes to improve the retention and board scores for the department and also has been active in adding new community-based service learning partnerships for her students so that they can gain more hands-on experience.

Christine LaPlante of Troy received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Faculty Service. LaPlante is department chairperson for the Civil, Construction, Industrial and Mechanical Technologies Department, which provides dozens of opportunities for direct access to the workplace or transfer to four-year baccalaureate programs. During her tenure as chairperson, she has cultivated increased relationships with the local engineering community as well as with the growing number of transfer schools that accept her students. She also has helped the college secure major philanthropic support that directly impacts the quality of her academic programs.

Vonnie Vannier of Troy received the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Faculty Service. Vannier joined the college in 2001 as an adjunct instructor in the English, Foreign Languages and English as a Second Language Department. In addition to her teaching duties, she fills many critical extracurricular roles at the college. Vannier is the faculty liaison to the Center for Effective Teaching and in 2012-2014 served as a co-chairperson for the college’s Middle States Self-Study Committee that led to the college’s reaccreditation. She also has been active in leading the New Faculty Orientation day and the Meritorious Service Awards ceremony.

Founded in 1953, Hudson Valley Community College offers more than 75 degree and certificate programs in four schools: Business; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Science; and Liberal Arts and Sciences; and an Educational Opportunity Center for academic and career training. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 12,000 students and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and workforce training. Hudson Valley has more than 75,000 alumni.

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