Outstanding Service Award

Liz Wright

Administrative Assistant, Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships

Liz WrightNIU can thank Liz Wright for Lisa Freeman's decision to join as vice president for research.

"Within minutes of meeting Liz Wright, it was evident to me that her positive energy, her can-do attitude and her infectious enthusiasm generate the positive workplace culture in the division," Freeman says.

"Liz leads by example and also inspires others to strive for excellence. She works hard but is never too busy to support a colleague or to assist a student. Liz smiles and rolls up her sleeves where others just grimace and wring their hands."

The interim provost has only improved her first impression of Wright, known to colleagues as a "diamond" shining with workplace passion and generosity: "Liz's optimism, creativity and willingness to go above and beyond have allowed the Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships to expand its service."

An employee for nine years, Wright launched development and implementation of a paperless process for submission and review of NIU's Research and Artistry Grants.

Wright coordinates the Presidential Research Professors selection process and, over the last several months played a significant role organizing and executing the Bold Futures workshops.

"She fully understands why we are here," says Ron Walters strategic initiatives adviser in the Office of the President, "why the future of each student and the institution itself depends on our eagerness to embrace and lead change."

Away from work, Wright volunteers for the Cathedral of Praise Youth Group, the We Care Pregnancy Clinic and her daughter's Sycamore Fury girls' basketball team.