At the spring University Meeting on May 8, President Elsa Núñez reviewed the progress made over the past five years under Eastern's 2008-13 Strategic Plan, citing creation of the Academic Services Center, the Center for Community Engagement and the Liberal Arts Work! Initiative as three examples of strides made under the plan. Núñez also handed out draft copies of the new 2013 Strategic Plan, and thanked Political Science Professor William Salka, co-chair on the COFE II Strategic Planning Committee, and more than 70 other faculty and staff who worked on the planning process. She also said construction on the new Fine Arts Instructional Center would begin in August, with the facility opening in fall 2015.
At the meeting, Biology Professor Ross Koning was honored with the 2013 Distinguished Professor Award. Excellence Awards were presented to Political Science Professor Nicole Krassas for full-time teaching; to Kathryn Niemasik for part-time teaching in Performing Arts; and to Performing Arts Professor David Belles for creative activity. Shirley Audet, associate director of fiscal affairs; Suzanne Dowling, counselor in psychological services; and William Leahy, chief executive officer for operations at the Institute for Sustainable Energy, received Excellence Awards for Service.
A 10-year service award was presented to Candice DeAngelis. A 20-year service award was presented to Debra Hunt, manager of information technology services. A 25-year service award was presented to Dominique Cesar, unit supervisor in the Registrar's office. Five new hires were announced: Jomar Floyd as resident hall director; Richard Fontaine as engineer in facilities management; William Bisese as director of the academic services center; Star Jackson as curriculum and program coordinator of Eastern's Summer Undergraduate Research in Health Life and Science; and Norma Vivar as operations and database support specialist in information technology services. Six retirees were honored for their years of service to the University: Cynthia Carroll, Phillip Elliott, Robert Wolf, Lula Mae Blocton, Annette Boulianne and Patricia Strickland.