SUNY Potsdam Honors Faculty & Staff with President's Awards


L to R: President’s Awards recipients Lisa Wilson, Donald Burgoyne, Irene Haverstock, College President John F. Schwaller, Steve Stannish (in rear), Patricia Stone and Jim German.

SUNY Potsdam recently honored 10 faculty and staff members with the 2012 President’s Awards for Excellence. College President Dr. John F. Schwaller presented the awards in a campus ceremony on May 10, as part of the College's annual Employee Recognition and Service Awards Ceremony.

The recipients included:
• President's Award for Excellence in Academic Advising: Dr. Lisa Wilson

• President's Award for Excellence in Clerical Service:  Irene Haverstock

• President's Award for Excellence in Clerical Service:  Patricia Stone

• President's Award for Excellence in College Service: Dr. James German

• President's Award for Excellence in Improving Campus Climate & Promoting Community Outreach:  Dr. John Youngblood

• President's Award for Excellence in Maintenance, Police or Food Service:  Tammy Layaw

• President's Award for Excellence in Professional Service: Donald Burgoyne

• President's Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities: Dr. Derek Maus

• President's Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities: Dr. Gregory Wanamaker

• President's Award for Excellence in Teaching:  Dr. Steve Stannish

About the recipients:

Donald Burgoyne:
Donald Burgoyne is an outstanding professional employee in Computing and Technology Services and has made significant and successful contributions to the College. Burgoyne continues to demonstrate decisiveness, creativity, innovation and a contemporary understanding of his field. He is always willing to help others on campus with the set-up of new or complex computer systems for various applications. Burgoyne strives to quickly respond to day-to-day computer related problems on campus. His patience and ability to deal with exasperated customers knows no bounds. He diffuses agitation with empathy and assurance, which is not possible without underlying competence.
Burgoyne has assisted several departments with critical system updates, creating important efficiencies for the department. For example, he is finalizing a digitized fingerprint system so students, at the start of their teaching careers, can use the system. This system will allow immediate fingerprint entry into state and FBI databases and should simplify the process significantly. Burgoyne has navigated through stringent federal and state regulations and is nearing completion of this highly technical and time-consuming project. His creativity and tenacity was displayed in his development of the Windows 7 imaging and deployment strategy. Because the campus has a non-Windows-based server environment, Burgoyne had to be very creative, innovative and outright clever to have Windows 7 useable for our campus. He worked tirelessly for months to get a solution in place. If an employee has Windows 7 on their computer today, it is because of his hard work.
In recognition of his exemplary and tireless service to the College, SUNY Potsdam awards Don Burgoyne the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service.

James German:
Dr. James German is an Associate Professor in the Department of History department and has also served as Chair of the department. German worked tirelessly to build and shape the department in order to offer a diverse and vigorous curriculum. He has been involved for many years in mentoring faculty and students. As Chair, German took his role as faculty and student mentor seriously, helping new faculty members adjust to the College, assisting faculty members in reappointment and tenure applications, and advising history majors and minors in career and graduate school aspirations. He was a member of the Dean’s Ad Hoc Committee on Mentoring New Faculty that ultimately led to the creation of the Arts and Sciences Mentoring Program, a program that has benefitted new faculty members in the school for nearly 10 years. German has also served as a member or chair of numerous committees for both the College and The School of Arts and Sciences.
Notably, he served as co-chair of the College’s Middle States Commission on Higher Education Reaccreditation Steering Committee for two years. In collaboration with work groups, German and his co-chair created a highly inclusive process, in order to complete thorough research and many opportunities for input from the campus community. He wrote the preliminary recommendations and findings, as well as the self-study report. German ensured it was accurate, consistent and fair in the representation of the College and placed emphasis on the institution’s areas of excellence. This task took countless hours. The resulting document was a report that could be presented to the visiting team with great pride and confidence.
In recognition of his exceptional service to the College, SUNY Potsdam awards Dr. James German the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in College Service.

Irene Haverstock:
Irene Haverstock has been the Secretary of the Computing and Technology Services department since August 2006, where she provides clerical support to 21 staff members. She does an outstanding job at organizing all the paperwork for new employees, arranging travel plans, tracking expenses and billing other departments for work performed by CTS, with her impressive organizational skills.
Haverstock is passionate about making things better for the students, faculty and staff. She is consistently pleasant and takes on all assignments with enthusiasm and dedication. Haverstock has proven herself a team player who is well-organized and pays attention to detail. Her dedication and proficiency in the College’s Banner database program is evident by her commitment to helping users who need assistance. She fields many calls with politeness and professionalism, because she cares and wants to help.
Haverstock’s commitment to growth and development and willingness to broaden her technology skills is seen by her enrollment in online courses. She has creatively improved services that support our Green IT initiatives, and reduced printing costs by converting the CTS network recharge system from paper to an online system. Haverstock also co-designed a new CTS ordering system. She singlehandedly runs the department recharges, as evidenced by the automatic billing procedure, and continues to conserve College resources and make processes more efficient. Haverstock also serves as a volunteer at significant events on campus.
In recognition of her exceptional skills and personable approach, SUNY Potsdam awards Irene Haverstock the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Clerical Service.

Tammy Layaw:
Tammy Layaw has been a Janitor since 2003 and has worked for SUNY Potsdam since 1994. She has worked in several buildings across campus, but currently works in Raymond Hall. The appearance of Raymond Hall is very important due to the frequent customers and guests that visit the building. Layaw works diligently to ensure the building looks its best. She understands the needs of the building, which contributes to the overall climate of the building. This year has been one of the more difficult years in the cleaning of Raymond Hall. There has been construction, causing extra dust and debris in the building. Layaw has ensured thorough cleaning occurs in the offices, working very hard to clean the offices in a timely manner, so individuals are affected by the construction as little as possible. She has been willing to offer assistance with any request. Her commitment to SUNY Potsdam, specifically Raymond Hall, during this time period has been invaluable. Layaw has proven to be dependable and dedicated to the campus, taking immense pride in her work and frequently going above and beyond to make sure offices and public spaces are clean and neat. Layaw is very friendly and professional with her interactions on campus, and embodies the attributes that one would like to see in a fellow colleague. You are sure to be greeted with a smile and pleasant demeanor when working with Tammy.
In recognition of her hard work and dedication, SUNY Potsdam awards Tammy Layaw the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Maintenance, Police or Food Service.

Derek Maus:
Dr. Derek Maus is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Communication. Maus’s scholarship is exemplary; he is committed to sharing his interests and findings not only with his field but the wider academic community. His many professional contributions on a variety of related topics demonstrate his continued commitment to advancing the conversation in advanced literary study.
Maus is an accomplished scholar, having published a scholarly monograph with the University of South Carolina Press in 2011, entitled “Unvarnished Reality: Subversive Russian and American Cold War Satire.” His previous publications include a co-edited collection of scholarly essays on Walter Mosley. Between 1999 and 2005, Maus edited seven volumes for Greenhaven Press on topics ranging from Russian Literature to the Cold War to Postmodernism. He has published 10 peer-reviewed scholarly essays in national and international journals. These publications represent field-specific research and grow out of his teaching, meeting and often surpassing the university’s stated goals of making teaching and research connect.
He has also published more than 30 book reviews and reference work entries, including reviewing new titles for “Choice,” which provides influential reviews to academic libraries. Maus regularly attends conferences and gives presentations on his work. While a Fulbright Visiting Lecturer at Karl-Franzens-Universität in Graz, Austria, he made well more than 20 such presentations. Maus also organized a panel on parodies of fan culture in “Doctor Who,” “Farscape” and “Battlestar Galactica” for the Science Fiction Research Association Meeting.
In recognition of his creative commitment and collaborative work, SUNY Potsdam awards Dr. Derek Maus the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities.

Steve Stannish:
Dr. Steve Stannish is an Associate Professor in the Department of History. Stannish played a critical role in developing a world history and ancient history curriculum, including a minor program in classical studies, the only program of its kind offered by any of the SUNY comprehensive colleges. As administrator of the Classical Studies Program, he worked diligently to bring the program to the attention of students and faculty. The program frequently sponsors panel talks or presentations on some aspect of the classical world.
Stannish’s introductory courses provide invaluable foundational service to the campus as a whole as part of the general education curriculum, and more specifically, within a variety of majors in both The School of Arts and Sciences and The School of Education and Professional Studies. His courses have not only served his home department of history, but have been one of the primary reasons that the minor exists. Stannish is also more than willing to present to other campus groups, including to the Philosophy Forum student group and in countless on-campus panel discussions.
Students have described Stannish as a lively, engaging and challenging teacher. He is a gifted storyteller; his lectures, in both substance and delivery, are very well crafted. Students have commented that Stannish balances the right amount of humor with seriousness, which make his lectures interesting. He is passionate about teaching, engaging with students to strive to their greatest potential.
In recognition of his outstanding teaching and dedication to his students, SUNY Potsdam awards Dr. Steve Stannish the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Patricia Stone:
Patricia Stone started her employment at SUNY Potsdam in 1981 in the Registrar’s Office. She served in the Department of Biology and Chemistry and Graduate Studies, before being promoted to the Secretary to the Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs in 2008. In her current position, Stone supplies clerical support to five positions, including the Provost, Associate Provost, Assistant Provost, Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness and Enrollment Management, and the Director of General Education.
She serves as the public face of the Provost’s Office. In this role, she is truly exceptional. Stone is team-oriented, professional and well-organized. She is willing to assist with any task and provides excellent support for projects. Stone is always willing to learn how to do new things and goes above and beyond for SUNY Potsdam.
Her dedication, adaptability and attention to detail with unfailing enthusiasm are what drive Stone to perform her duties so well. She always gives more than is asked of her with grace and professionalism, and has mastered managing and monitoring the budget, including the addition of the Kilmer Apprenticeships and Walker Fellowships. She has suggested and implemented the streamlining of certain processes in the office that improve communication with constituents on campus and create efficiencies.
Stone is responsible for a large teacher evaluation project as well. Every year, hundreds of evaluations are counted, sorted, mailed, collected and then scanned for teacher feedback. Stone accomplishes this huge project with ease, organization and competence each semester.
In recognition of her exceptional skills and personable approach, SUNY Potsdam awards Patricia Stone the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Clerical Service.

Gregory Wanamaker:
Dr. Gregory Wanamaker has been a Professor of Composition and Theory for The Crane School of Music since 1997. Wanamaker has established himself as a leading musical voice. His achievements and activities have brought significant attention to Crane and SUNY Potsdam. He is one of the most significant and recognized composers of his generation.
Wanamaker is recognized throughout the contemporary music community for his intriguing and creative compositions. His music has been championed by countless performers and teachers. Critical acclaim for these works has appeared in the noted music journals and periodicals Fanfare Magazine, the Saxophone Journal, the Saxophone Symposium and the American Record Guide. His recordings span from 2003 to 2012.
Gregory has received multiple honors and awards for his music. In 2011, he received the New York State Council on the Arts Individual Artist Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts Access to Artist Excellence Grant, both in association with the Society for New Music, and consecutive ASCAP Standard Awards. Wanamaker was commissioned by the Society for New Music to compose a piece in collaboration with a renowned photographer. The project was supported by two important grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts. Receiving support from these two organizations is prestigious and competitive.
Wanamaker’s works are regularly featured at international saxophone and contemporary music festivals. His new piece for oboe and tenor saxophone will be premiering at the 2012 North American Saxophone Alliance Biennial Conference.
In recognition of his creative commitment and collaborative work, SUNY Potsdam awards Dr. Gregory Wanamaker the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities.

Lisa Wilson: Dr. Lisa Wilson is an Associate Professor and the Chair of the Department of English and Communication. She serves as a truly outstanding advisor and mentor to undergraduate students, graduate students and department colleagues, going above and beyond the ordinary expectations of an advisor. She is sincere and professional in her interactions as a mentor.
As an advisor, Wilson guides students through class selection, formulating a thesis topic and counseling them on career planning. She takes a strong personal interest in each individual student, and has a thorough understanding of program requirements and campus-wide resources available to students. When a student declares one of the majors in the department, Wilson advises each one and assists them in planning and registering for their first semester. She also helps the students create an overall plan of study to ensure graduation in a timely manner, and ensures the best fit for their future faculty advisor.
Wilson has mentored a large proportion of the students in the English Honors Program, and assists students as they prepare for research and graduate school. She develops a sense of the student’s needs, interests and skills, which has been highly instrumental in placing the honors students in graduate programs.
In recognition of her outstanding dedication to the students and departmental success, SUNY Potsdam awarded Dr. Lisa Wilson the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Academic Advising.

John Youngblood:
Dr. John Youngblood is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Communication. He plays a critical role in mentoring students, speaking to the specific needs of students both inside and outside the classroom. Students know that Youngblood can be trusted and counted upon to address their concerns. He is deeply dedicated to listening to students, understanding their concerns and advocating for them. The outreach Youngblood performs rivals his dedication to making the campus climate safe and comfortable for the young people who make it their home.
He is the advisor to the Black Student Alliance, and works tirelessly with BSA to produce extremely well-attended events. His mentorship has been vital to the group’s success. As a member of the Diversity in Action Coalition, he has contributed to several projects to improve the climate at SUNY Potsdam for all students.
Youngblood’s contributions to the campus climate are diverse. He volunteers his time and energy with groups as varied as the Building Blocks Daycare and the Multicultural Alliance of Northern New York. Youngblood contributed substantially to the addition of a play, Diversity Play, in the Department of Theatre and Dance, which dealt explicitly with diversity. He met with the actors to discuss the difficult topics being addressed, and lead talkbacks for every one of the performances. The talkbacks were remarkable in their composition, as well as honest in their at times painful but necessary dialogue about race. Youngblood has also provided “mock” public speaking classes during the annual Educational Opportunity Program Orientation, successfully engaging students while introducing them to the fundamentals of effective communication.
In recognition of his outstanding dedication to improve campus climate, SUNY Potsdam awards Dr. John Youngblood the 2012 President’s Award for Excellence in Improving Campus Climate and Promoting Community Outreach.

SUNY Potsdam faculty and staff members come from many different backgrounds. Like the College’s students, they are a friendly, caring group—always ready to discuss a problem or assist with a project. Dedicated to teaching, learning and serving the College, they are not just active in the classroom, in the office and on campus, but in every facet of their lives.

To learn more about the engaging learning environment at SUNY Potsdam, visit

Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,350 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training and leadership in the performing and visual arts.