Chancellor's Cornerstone Award
About the Award
The Chancellor's Cornerstone Award recognizes University of Alaska Fairbanks staff for sustained outstanding contributions toward accomplishing and enhancing the UAF mission and strategic plan. The nomination period for the 2023 award will open in March.
Congratulations to the 2022 Chancellor's Cornerstone Award recipient, Mimi Lesniak. Lesniak is the assistant to the director of the Scenarios Network for Alaska and Arctic Planning and the Alaska Climate Adaptation Science Center within the International Arctic Research Center at UAF.
Recipients are publicly recognized for work-related service and receive a plaque and gift as determined by the chancellor. A copy of the award is placed in the recipient's personnel file.
The 2022 nomination period is open through Friday, March 18.
All departments are encouraged to recognize their employees in addition to this award, and are encouraged to nominate staff members from both inside and outside their departments. When you submit a nomination, your department will be put in a drawing to receive an ice cream social.
Nominations are encouraged and accepted from peers, supervisors, customers, stakeholders, students, faculty, other academic, administrative, support, sponsored research and service staff, who have a working relationship with the nominee.
The award committee consists of volunteer members of the UAF Staff Council, and, whenever possible, at least one (1) previous recipient of the award. Award recommendations are forwarded to the chancellor for final selection.
Specific examples of the following should be included in the nomination:
- Advocating on behalf of UAF in the workplace or in the community
- Demonstrates sensitivity to cultural diversity and working to build an inclusive, welcoming environment
- Showing concern for working wellor for surpassing a standard of excellence
- Demonstrating consistent superior performance and significantly exceeding position requirements
- Taking on significant responsibilities in addition to exceeding expectations of their job
- Taking ownership of services rendered and acting on behalf of the person being served
- Demonstrating a helpful and positive attitude
- Improving the workplace through exemplary initiative, dedication or leadership
All staff members (excluding deans, directors, and executive staff and faculty) occupying any position at UAF are eligible to receive recognition.
In the mid–fifties a construction company clearing land for the Bunnell Building hauled the university cornerstone off with other construction debris. When Audrey Loftus, a staff member at the time, learned that the cornerstone was missing she explained to the construction company why it was so important that it be returned to its original spot.
"The cornerstone was the heart of the university. When it was put there it was not the cornerstone of a building. Judge Wickersham put it there as the cornerstone of the university itself," said Loftus during an interview in 1993.
The cornerstone was returned and rededicated in 1962; It still stands in front of the Bunnell Building today.
During her time at UAF, Loftus was a sort of cornerstone for the university as well. She built the foundation for what would later become Career Services, the UA Foundation and the UAF Alumni Association.
There are many employees at UAF, who, like Audrey Loftus, understand the importance of the university's past and are working tirelessly today with an eye toward the future.
The Chancellor's Cornerstone Award is one way to recognize their efforts.