We are pleased and proud to announce that Linda Evans, Department Administrator for the English Department, has been selected as the first recipient of the Humanities Shining Star award. Linda manages in an exemplary manner the responsibilities of her complex position in the largest department in Humanities. In the words of the current department chair, Rosemary Hennessy, "...her steady professional demeanor, canny intelligence, and resourcefulness in all facets of this demanding job have continually impressed me. I have relied heavily on her expertise ... and I see us very much as collaborators in an administrative partnership.” Hennessy also notes that "Her expertise in some of the most delicate aspects of department administration has had a lasting impact on the department and the school."
Last year was especially challenging for Linda and the English department. Aside from several promotion and tenure and contract renewal dossiers, the department underwent an external review that included an extensive self-study report and a visit by the external review committee. Linda was involved in all aspects of this process and her performance in managing the research, staff, compilation of materials and the final report, as well as all the pieces related to the external reviewers visit was outstanding. The department was also without a graduate student administrator for some time last year and Linda stepped up to fill many aspects of that role as well as her own. In addition, Linda has promoted both calm and evolving competence, serving on the department's web committee and helping to launch a new and much improved web site that gives the department's faculty and students greater visibility inside and outside the hedges.
Linda has been, and continues to be, an important staff leader in Humanities, serving on numerous staff committees and taking the lead on several projects. She gives freely and generously of her time and can be counted on to pitch in to serve students, faculty and staff needs alike. She has been a mentor to several new staff members and a wise counsel to those of us who need to work out problems or interpret policies. It is obvious to all that Linda cares deeply about Rice students as well as our faculty and staff and that affection and respect is returned to her. Linda Evans is a stellar example and role model for all staff in Humanities and Rice at large and she is truly deserving of our first annual Shining Star award.