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Resilient Pack

Standout Staff

NC State employees continue to go the extra mile during the COVID-19 pandemic, making a big difference for others along the way.

two women standing next to car packed with food donations
Diane Schroeder (left) and Linda Shell, volunteer coordinators with NC State's Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, helped lead a food drive for the Feed the Pack Food Pantry.

As part of our Resilient Pack series, we’ve collected a handful of shout-outs to NC State staffers doing the “extraordinary ordinary” during difficult times. As told by their nominators, these employees’ stories epitomize the word “resilient” and demonstrate the fortitude of the Wolfpack community.

Latonya Boone
High Voltage Distribution Specialist
Utilities and Engineering Services

In the words of nominator Michael Jones with Utilities and Engineering Services:

“Latonya is one of only a few women in line work. This field is dominated by men, but she is resilient in learning the trade and making sure that women excel in the power industry. She is an expert in meters as well. She tirelessly travels the campus reading water, sewer and electric meters. Some of these meters are covered by heavy manhole covers (weighing at least 40 pounds) that she has to lift off in order to read the meters. She works hard and she is always seeking to learn.

“Working in power you have to rise above and beyond the call of duty, especially during challenging times like this pandemic. You usually get dirty, work hard and deal with inclement weather. However, I think Latonya has superseded that call and has proven that women can keep the lights burning just as men can. Latonya is truly the pride of the Pack.”

Carla Davis
Communications Coordinator
University Sustainability Office

From nominator Lani St. Hill with NC State Facilities:

“Carla Davis has gone above and beyond duties and expectations during this time. She has taken on the huge project of communicating the safety procedures, priorities and strategies that Facilities is undergoing, both for the entire division and also for campus.

“The Sustainability Office is already understaffed — even prior to the loss of temporary workers — and now has just three people, including Carla. Point being, she already has an expanded role due to the small staff — but now she is taking on all of the communications for the entire Facilities division. Kudos to Carla for taking everything in stride with a great attitude, amazing organizational skills and a high degree of skill.”

Keyta Kemp
Business and Technology Applications Analyst
Office of Information Technology

As told by nominator Kate Davison with NC State’s Institute for Transportation Research and Education:

“Transitioning to online classes has been very rewarding, with our local government employee students taking on the challenge better than we could have imagined. But some unintended consequences are last-minute registrations, in-person class cancellations month by month, and needing to close classes quickly when they fill up.

“That’s where Keyta Kemp comes in. She’s been quick and helpful with every request and every question that I’ve come up with. She’s also incredibly patient when I think I’ve sent in a full list of requests, and as soon as they are done I realize I forgot several. I want to give a shout-out to Keyta for being on top of her game and making a huge difference to us during a stressful time.”

The OLLI Team

From nominator Janice Sykes with NC State Continuing and Professional Education:

“I was volunteering at the Feed the Pack Food Pantry recently when we received an email alerting us to a big donation that was going to arrive during our shift. Shortly thereafter, two cars pulled up, packed with donations from Osher Lifelong Learning Institute members.

“According to OLLI Assistant Director Joan Hardman-Cobb, she and volunteer coordinators Linda Shell and Diane Schroeder invited OLLI members to participate in a donation drive-through at McKimmon Center, where the program is based. The team asked for food donations for NC State’s Feed the Pack Food Pantry and new socks and underwear for Note in the Pocket, an organization that provides clothing to school-aged children.

“The event took place Dec. 1 from 1 to 3 p.m. It was a chilly day so Linda, Diane and Joan were well wrapped up as they stood by their cars with trunks open, waiting for donors to show up — and they did. The cars kept coming for the entire two hours.

“OLLI was able to donate 870 pounds of food and $125 in cash to Feed the Pack, as well as nearly 75 pounds of clothing to Note in the Pocket.

“This was a truly uplifting situation during what has been a very challenging time in our world. It makes you feel good about humanity again.”

Cheri Pipkin
Senior Business Analyst
Office of Information Technology

In the words of nominator Kate Davison with NC State’s Institute for Transportation Research and Education:

“Cheri Pipkin has been a huge support as we moved into Reporter and Moodle to host our online classes with tests. I often have urgent, day-of, hour-of requests that she is always available for. She’s also helped me understand the system better and use it more efficiently. But really, it’s the rapid response that has been so important to my day-to-day work that I appreciate the most because I know it’s not a part of her job to respond so quickly. It’s just Cheri providing exemplary service.”