InsideODU: News for Faculty and Staff
Thursday, November 1, 2012


Community Engagement Office’s Lex Park Honored as Employee of the Month

For Lex Park, communications technology specialist and coordinator for Old Dominion's commencement programs, the devil is in the details, as the saying goes.

One only has to look at the extensive list of bulleted duties (more than two dozen) his supervisor, Karen Meier, forwarded as part of his nomination packet for Employee of the Month to appreciate all of the things he's responsible for - from sending announcements to all students at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters to overseeing ticket distribution.

Meier, assistant vice president for community engagement, calls the list she submitted "a sampling" of the many commencement responsibilities he juggles in addition to the other responsibilities of his position.

Meier added: "He is in charge of the process leading up to the ceremonies and the day-of execution of the student robing area. These duties are vast and the constituencies diverse - from students and faculty to families, guests and dignitaries."

Clearly, it didn't take Park long to get a handle on things. ODU's Employee of the Month for September, he has only been a member of the Office of Community Engagement since March 2011.

Meier, who called Park "an exceptional candidate for HR Employee of the Month, one that embodies the spirit of customer service at ODU," wrote in support of his nomination by two other staff members from her office, former employee Trey Derrenbacker and current employee Son Nguyen, assistant director for operations and university events.

"This past December, Lex assumed sole coordination of Commencement Central," Nguyen said. "The process leading up to the day of ceremonies is daunting at best and begins when the last ceremony ends. I can't begin to tell you the amount of details that goes into this one aspect of Lex's position."

Derrenbacker called Park a great addition to the team. "Lex led our department to have one of our smoothest commencements to date," he wrote. "He always keeps a level head and thinks things through to see the bigger picture. He always comes through when you need him."


The University Employee of the Month Selection Committee encourages employees to nominate their outstanding, "go the extra mile" colleagues and employees. This program is designed to acknowledge and reward employees whose accomplishments and/or demeanor exemplify excellence, quality service and commitment to ODU. Classified and AP faculty employees receive a framed certificate from the president, $175 and one day of leave. Hourly winners get $250, since they are not eligible to receive recognition leave.

Note: The selection committee needs specific examples that relate to each applicable criterion in order to select a nominee for the award. Nominations remain active for six months from date of submission and nominators may submit additional documentation to support a nominee during the active six months.

The criteria used to nominate an employee include the following:

• An outstanding accomplishment that benefited the department/students.

• Extraordinary service to internal and/or external customers.

• Inspiring initiative/leadership.

• Enthusiasm/energy given to assigned work.

• Teamwork.

• Exemplary efforts to nurture a climate of care, concern and civility.

• Creative innovations to service, process or work tools.

For more information contact Tony Belk at

or 3-3046, or go to

Return to InsideODU