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March 3, 2014

Alumni Office’s Karen Cobb Honored as February Employee of the Month

kudos1-lgPresident Broderick presents the Employee of the Month award to Karen Cobb.

The many, often behind-the-scenes, duties performed by office managers are sometimes taken for granted, but that certainly isn't true in the case of the Office of Alumni Relations' Karen Cobb, who was honored Friday as Old Dominion's Employee of the Month.

Cobb, who was recognized last August as Employee of the Month for the University Advancement division, received the university-wide honor during a surprise presentation Friday morning.

Dan Campbell, director of constituent relations in the alumni office, was one of two colleagues who nominated Cobb for the two honors. In his letter of nomination, he noted that Cobb is "at the hub of everything connected with the Alumni Relations Office and the Alumni Association."

Campbell went on to say: "While serving as the first line of contact for many alumni, she is also integral to the events, chapters, clubs and communication efforts. Perhaps most impressive is her ability to navigate the complex rules and regulations that we encounter in our events and programs. Karen is a master at making the seemingly impossible a reality on a daily basis."

Both Campbell and fellow nominator Brooke Boothby, director of outreach in the alumni office, cited Cobb's willingness to stay late, when necessary, to help get the job done. Boothby, a relatively recent addition to the staff, also credited Cobb for her helpfulness and attention to detail.

Describing Cobb as "the glue that holds the Alumni Office together," Boothby added: "She is willing to help anyone in the office with their tasks and always wants to make sure that the Office of Alumni Relations and the Alumni Association put their best face forward. She is a true team player and is willing to stay late and put in the extra time to make sure that every 't' has been crossed and 'i' dotted."

Cobb joined the office on a part-time basis in 2007, and less than a year later moved into a full-time position as office manager.


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 jbelk@odu.edu or 683-3046, or go to http://www.odu.edu/ao/humanresources/employeeofthemonth.shtml.