Angelo State’s 2018-19 Rodgers Distinguished Awards Winners
August 22, 2019
Christabel Romine, Dr. Lee Atkins and James “Dan” Robertson have been selected to receive the 2018-19 Gary and Pat Rodgers Distinguished Awards honoring outstanding staff, faculty and administrators at Angelo State University.
Romine, campus visit coordinator in the Office of Admissions, received the Distinguished Staff Award. Atkins, an assistant professor of physical therapy, received the Distinguished Faculty Award. Robertson, director of University Recreation, received the Distinguished Administrator Award. Each also received a $2,500 honorarium.
They, along with 48 other nominees, were honored by ASU President Brian J. May during a ceremony on Thursday, Aug. 22, in the Houston Harte University Center.
An ASU alumna and five-year staff member, Romine was honored for completely recreating and improving ASU’s campus tours and for her oversight and enhancement of the student RAMbassadors program. Individual and group campus tours make up one of ASU’s most effective recruiting activities, with statistics showing that prospective students who tour the campus are much more likely to choose to attend ASU. Romine has not only worked to personalize the campus tour process, but also trained the student RAMbassadors to deliver the best possible tour experience. She has also revamped the RAMbassadors program to provide more and better training, which has resulted in a 100% increase in membership. She is also involved in several university committees, volunteers at numerous campus and community events, and has been named a “Wonderful Woman of ASU.” From one of her nomination letters, “Our campus is beautiful, and the experience that Christabel and her team have created is designed to be an individual, inclusive experience for our prospects. Top that off with the Ram Family, and the more (prospective students) we can get to visit, the better we will do in our yield.”
An ASU alum and three-year faculty member, Atkins was honored for his contagious enthusiasm for research, outstanding assembly of ASU’s Functional Mobility and Assessment Lab, and ceaseless dedication to his physical therapy students. He has an extensive list of grant-funded research projects, and has published and presented many of them in industry journals and at professional conferences. He also oversees and advises numerous student research projects while maintaining his primary teaching responsibilities, including teaching Clinical Anatomy, which is the initial course in the Doctor of Physical Therapy (D.P.T.) degree program. He is a member of several university committees and participates in many community service activities. From his nomination letter, “To say that Dr. Atkins is passionate about research would be an understatement. He has also assisted other faculty with projects and provides a spark where needed…He spends countless hours in the evenings and on weekends working with students in the lab who are not a part of his research or courses, just because he has a passion for teaching and each of his students…Angelo State’s D.P.T. program has certainly found a diamond in Dr. Atkins.”
An ASU staff member since 2004, Robertson was honored for his work ethic, dedication to the ASU community and outstanding management of University Recreation (UREC). He is the rare young professional who excels in fiscal management, development and oversight of professional and student employees, and building and maintaining a successful program. He continually reviews policies and procedures to increase efficiencies, has created a positive working environment, and has directly influenced the “participation explosion” of ASU students in intramurals, club sports, fitness, Outdoor Adventures, open recreation and aquatics. He is also involved in several university committees and activities, and he is heavily involved in the community as a volunteer coach, American Red Cross instructor and in several other roles. From his nomination letter, “Dan has served the UREC department and Angelo State University in the most professional manner I have ever seen from a young professional. His loyalty, honesty and personal traits are unquestionable. The overwhelming popularity of our department is a direct reflection of his contagious enthusiasm and positive attitude…We have been fortunate to retain a person of his caliber.”
The Gary and Pat Rodgers Distinguished Awards were created by San Angelo native and former ASU student Gary Rodgers and his wife, Pat. Because of their association with many ASU employees over the years, the couple recognized the roles that staff, faculty and administrators perform to help ASU fulfill its mission to prepare students to be responsible and productive citizens. The Rodgers also provide the $2,500 honorarium for each award recipient.
Other nominees for the Distinguished Staff Award were Ashley Baccus, Ella Burnett, Debbie Byrd, Jody Casares, Amanda Gibson, Erin Johnson, Kerri Mikulik, Phillip Nichelson, Tom Nurre, Anne San Miguel, Vianey Sanchez, Stacey Sauer, Brenda Stewart, Matthew “Ty” Walden and Joy “Tonne” Williamson.
Other nominees for the Distinguished Faculty Award were Jonathan Alvis, Anthony Battistini, Bruce Bechtol, Frank “Tony” Blair, Michael Burnett, Charlene Bustos, Manny Campos, Kenneth Carrell, Leah Carruth, Drew Curtis, Allison Dushane, David Faught, Carlos Flores, Donna Gee, Mohammad Shafinul Haque, Mellisa Huffman, Makensie McCormick, Ashley Meyer, Brenda Norton, Donald Plachno, Gayle Randall, Natalie Ryan, Matthew Shipes, Ben Skipper, June Smith, Marva Solomon, William Taylor, Mark Lewis Tizzoni, Kyle van Ittersum and Sonja Varbelow.
Other nominees for the Distinguished Administrator Award were Michelle Boone, Kimberly Dickerson and Kurtis Neal.