Archive for the ‘employees’ Category

Congratulations to Suzanne Gardner, General Counsel at St. Petersburg College, who was named one of the inaugural 2014 Top Corporate Counsel Finalists by the Tampa Bay Business Journal.

She is one of four finalists in the government organization/nonprofit category.

The program recognizes in-house attorneys in the Tampa Bay area who are leaders in their company, organization or industry who display high ethical standards and exemplary professional skills.

Gardner will be recognized at the awards ceremony on Tuesday, March 25, at the St. Petersburg Marriott in Clearwater.

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Child's Play

Kevin Grass
Child’s Play, 2013
Acrylic on panel, 60 x 44 in.

The new exhibition at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art celebrates the creative and wide-ranging talents and accomplishments of the St. Petersburg College art faculty.

The show demonstrates the commitment and dedication of the arts faculty to art education while also displaying high standards for their own artistic development.

One work in the exhibition showcases faculty members in another way. The painting Child’s Play by Kevin Grass, show here, features images of arts faculty members from the Clearwater Campus: Jonathan Barnes (on the ladder), Kim Kirchman (in the swing) and Frank Duffy (in the blue shirt). Kevin Grass’ wife Michaela Oberlaender (in the tree) teaches art history classes at the college.

The exhibition opened the week of March 6 and continues through April 20.

The exhibition features works by full-time art faculty members Jonathan Barnes, Barton Gilmore, Kevin Grass, Marjorie Greene and Kimberly Kirchman.

Participating adjunct faculty are Linda Berghoff, Frank Duffy, Ya La’Ford, Francesco Gillia, Barbara Hubbard, Elizabeth Indianos, Susan Johnson, Chris Otten, Rebecca Skelton, McKenzie Smith and Joseph Weinzettle.

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Ten retired St. Petersburg College Career Service employees were honored during the second annual Career Service Emeritus Award luncheon on Wednesday, Feb. 26.

CSEC Emeriti Awards luncheon banner

President Bill Law speaks to the crowd at the CSEC emeriti luncheon

Dr. Bill Law speaks to the awards luncheon gathering on Wednesday, Feb. 26.

The award recipients included:

  • Beverly Avren
  • Gloria Bowens
  • Donna Cadorette
  • MaryAnn Calandra
  • Roger Gates
  • Dennis Hill
  • Jane Johnson
  • Pamela Neale
  • Linda Nielsen
  • Linda Wichlenski

The honorees were selected by the Career Service Employee Council based on nominations submitted by current Career Service employees.

“We selected the 10 people from the list of nominations received from career service employees,” said JR Lenges, Plant Supervisor in Facilities Services, who helped plan and coordinate the event. “Every career service employee had the opportunity to nominate someone.”

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St. Petersburg College Men’s Basketball Coach Earnest Crumbley was featured on ABC Action News and TBNWeekly.com after he was voted into the Florida College System Activities Association Men’s Basketball Hall of Fame.

“My first job is an educator. I’m a teacher at heart,” Crumbley said in the ABC Action News interview. “It’s just for me to make sure that we can make an impact on lives. That’s the glory of the job.”

Crumbley will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on March 8, according to the TV news report.

The TV news report is available on the college’s YouTube channel.

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tonjua williams2St. Petersburg College’s Dr. Tonjua Williams, senior vice president of Student Services, was honored by Academy Prep Center of St. Petersburg on Tuesday as one of 2014′s Five Fabulous Females. The award honors successful women who make extraordinary contributions to the Tampa Bay community.

Other honorees were:

  • Philanthropist Carol Morsani
  • Jana Jones, vice president of Times Publishing Co.
  • Beth Houghton, executive director of the St. Petersburg Free Clinic
  • Mindy Grossman, CEO of Home Shopping Network

Dr. Williams has spent her 26-year career at SPC and is a nationally recognized keynote speaker and student development consultant. In her current role, she oversees the college’s student success efforts.

Her other recognitions include Jr. Achievement Educator of the Year (2011), finalist for the Tampa Bay Executive Woman of the Year and the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce Iconic Woman of the Year (2013).

Read more about this event in the Tampa Bay Times.

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CB at Seminole

Clyde Butcher spoke to a full house at the Seminole Campus on Jan. 29.

By David Klement

Executive Director
Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions

Clyde Butcher is an original — a genuine Florida character who defies alligators and mosquitoes in the muck of swamps to capture his priceless images of pristine nature and who minces no words in telling anyone who listens how poorly the state has managed its natural resources.

Clyde shared some of those images — and insights about how he shoots and processes them — along with choice words about the pollution of the Everglades, the state’s natural springs and its rivers, in two presentations sponsored by the Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions at St. Petersburg College on Jan. 29. The eccentric photographic artist, in full Florida cracker regalia of flowered shirt, straw hat, baggy pants, croc shoes and chest-length white beard, commanded the room as he highlighted his life and his art in separate presentations to a student forum in the afternoon and a Village Square dinner program in the evening.

Butcher, often referred to as “the Ansel Adams of Florida,” is a gentle giant of a man who morphs into a mystic when you get him talking about the connection between the human spirit and nature. In his Village Square talk, he spoke of a communication bond between trees and plants and a chemical reaction in humans when exposed to a forest — a positive reaction.

He speaks of wilderness as being “a sacred necessity,” and recounts how, after the tragic death of his son at the hands of a drunk driver in 1986, he went into the deep woods of the Big Cypress National Preserve where “the mysterious spiritual experience of being close to nature helped to restore my soul.”

There is similar tone of mysticism when he speaks about his art. “I make pictures large enough so that you can see them,” he says in reference to his large-scale — as big as 4-by-5-feet– black-and-white photos of nature. “You have to scan, and the mind puts together what you see. I want you to see the sky, and veins in the leaves.”

The unique perspective of his pictures, along with the scale, “make people feel like they want to walk into them. I want people to be drawn in and feel their way through the environment.”

Yet in his public talks he is plain-spoken, talking nonchalantly about wading in chest-high waters teeming with gators and water moccasins to set up his tripod for the perfect shot, and in giving a humorous account of helping President and Mrs. Jimmy Carter briefly elude the Secret Service on one of his frequent “swamp walks.”

DK and ClydeAnd he is blunt when talking about the greatest threat to the Everglades: “In plain English, its s—,” he says, using the four-letter word for human waste. The incursion of development to the very edge of the Glades — in some cases beyond the edge — and destructive forms of agriculture such as sugar cane fields to the immediate north have done immense damage to the quality and quantity of the watery expanse named the “River of Grass” by Marjory Stoneman Douglas in her landmark book about the Everglades.

Clyde bemoans that careless regard for pristine wilderness as he disdains the politicians who pay lip service to environmental protection even as they strip funding from restoration programs.

But he worries more about an even greater threat to the Everglades: sea level rise brought about by climate change. By 2025, the Glades will be under water, he told me after the evening lecture. Extraordinary tides are already inundating parts of the preserve, and they will only get worse in the next few years.

The only solace to be found in that gloomy prediction is his promise to continue photographing those doomed patches of Eden even into his eighth decade. At least we will have his pictures to remind us of what once was. And those lucky enough to have attended his lectures will have the memories of having rubbed elbows with a living legend.

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RajaramDr. Lakshminarayan Rajaram, a math professor on the St. Petersburg College Tarpon Springs Campus, recently received a prestigious Hind Rattan Award for 2014 in recognition of his outstanding teaching/research services globally and achievements in the fields of biostatistics, mathematics and public health.

This award is given to distinguished non-resident Indians who have made exceptional contributions to society through their achievements in their respective fields. This honor is bestowed by the Non-Resident Indians (NRI) Society of India, an organization under the umbrella of the Government of India.

Dr. Rajaram was one of the 25 recipients selected from the worldwide Indian diaspora by an advisory board that includes former Prime Minister of India. He received the award from the Central Minister Tariq Anwar at a gala ceremony during the 33rd International Congress of NRIs in the historic Ashok Hotel on the eve of Republic Day in New Delhi. Dr. Rajaram also participated in the Republic Day parade celebrations as a special guest of the NRI diaspora.

As an invited faculty and a keynote speaker, Dr. Rajaram teaches highly intense courses and workshops in research methods, clinical research and statistical methodologies as applied to clinical and public health research in countries such as China, Ecuador, India, Netherlands, Spain, United Kingdom and West Africa.

Before coming to SPC in 2000, Dr. Rajaram worked as a biostatistician in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism of the Johns Hopkins University Medical School, in the Clinical Research Division of a pharmaceutical company, and the Institute of Aging at the University of South Florida.

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SPC WIND SYMPHONY: The first performance for the SPC Wind Symphony is 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6 at the Palladium Theater in downtown St. Petersburg.

Nathan Muehl arrived at St. Petersburg College in fall 2012 with an ambitious idea.

The new band and orchestra director wanted more opportunities for his students to perform. He wanted to expose students to accomplished musicians from the community. And he wanted to give those classical musicians in the community a venue to play challenging, mature compositions.

His dream has now come together. The St. Petersburg College Wind Symphony — 44 members strong — takes the stage for the first time Thursday.

“The Wind Symphony is dedicated to performing the Masterworks of the great composers of the past and present generations,” Muehl said. The ensemble’s musical repertoire spans from classical to romantic to modern – all high quality, challenging compositions.

About two-thirds of the Wind Symphony’s members have a bachelor’s degree in music or higher.

A photo of Nathan Muehl, Director of Band and Orchestra at SPC.

Nathan Muehl, Director of Band and Orchestra at SPC.

“The idea of what we’re doing here came from a community college I was involved with as a participant,” Muehl said. Sinclair Community College, a large two-year school in Dayton, Ohio, developed a unique structure that involved both community members and the college’s music students. SCC’s Wind Symphony has been in existence for more than 30 years and has allowed these collaborating musicians to learn from one another and play music at a more advanced level.

Since implementing the Sinclair model, SPC has experienced a 490 percent increase in wind ensemble participation since fall 2011. In addition to the new Wind Symphony, SPC’s Community Concert Band, a required ensemble for music majors in which community members also can participate, has grown from 19 to nearly 70 members.

Muehl hopes the Wind Symphony also will raise the profile of the college in the arts community, showcasing the skill of SPC students and the strength of its music programs.

Muehl loves to share his passion for music and promote the music programs at SPC. Besides his work with college students and community musicians, he has done outreach into the high schools, encouraging musicians there to continue their educations.

An accomplished flautist, he graduated summa cum laude with a degree in music education from The Ohio State University. Prior to his appointment at SPC, Muehl taught various instrumental studies for five years at Alderson-Broaddus College in West Virginia and also served as a high school band and choral instructor in Columbus, Ohio.

Muehl also worked with the director of the Philadelphia Wind Symphony, a volunteer ensemble formed in fall 2011 that now boasts 50 members.

The first performance for the SPC Wind Symphony is 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 6 at the Palladium Theater in downtown St. Petersburg.

The SPC Wind Symphony during its first rehearsal on Jan. 16 at the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus.

The SPC Wind Symphony during its first rehearsal on Jan. 16 at the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus.

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CarneyDr. Conferlete Carney plans to retire from his position as provost of St. Petersburg College’s Tarpon Springs Campus after the end of the current semester, no later than June 30.

In a note to all college faculty and staff Wednesday, President Bill Law said:

We celebrate with him this milestone in his impressive career and congratulate him on his many accomplishments both here at St. Petersburg College as well as in his prior career in private industry.

Dr. Carney is an outstanding educator, a patient and thoughtful colleague and a genial and well-met friend. Conferlete has been a vital part of our success in implementing The College Experience, contributing his unique skill to help design and launch our Individual Learning Plans, in particular.

Details on the recognition for Dr. Carney and the plans for his replacement will be forthcoming. For today, I hope you will drop him a note to congratulate him for his contribution and to wish him well in the next season of his life.

St. Petersburg College is better for his service and we will miss his presence when he departs.

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In a report from WFLA.com, SPC Professor Adrian Tillman, a practicing software engineer, shared information about how cell phones can be tracking where users have been without them knowing it.

“We live in an information society now and information is everywhere,” Tillman said in a the report. “It’s a beautiful thing, but at the same time you have the gift and you have the curse.”

Tillman, who is at the Tarpon Springs Campus, teaches classes in computer and information technology and has been developing large scale software systems across many different industries and platforms for the last 10 years, according to his faculty page.

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