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Two Finance and Operations employees, Nancy Burton of Facilities Services and Deborah Hawkins of Transportation and Parking, were selected by Interim Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz to receive the 2019 C. Knox Massey Distinguished Service Award, one of the most coveted distinctions earned by faculty and staff. Chosen from campuswide nominations, the recipients will be honored at an April 27 awards luncheon. Each winner receives a $10,000 stipend and an award citation.

“These amazing colleagues who, through their dedicated work and commitment to excellence, continually up the pace of progress at the Carolina we cherish and love,” Guskiewicz said. “We thank them for their service to our University and our state. They are the soul of this most public of the public universities.”

The late C. Knox Massey of Durham established the award in 1980 to recognize “unusual, meritorious or superior contributions” by University employees. In 1984, Massey joined the families of his son, Knox Massey Jr., and daughter, Kay Massey Weatherspoon, to create the Massey-Weatherspoon fund. Income from the fund supports the Massey Awards and Carolina Seminars. This year marks the award’s 40th anniversary.

Nancy Denise Burton

Receptionist and administrative support specialist for Housekeeping Services

Nancy BurtonBurton took classes in her spare time to advance from her position as third shift housekeeper to become an administrative support specialist in Housekeeping Services. In 18 years at Carolina, she has inspired and motivated others through an admirable personal and collective work ethic. She is valued not only for the tremendous responsibility she carries but also for the collegiality she cultivates. “Nancy would take lemons and make lemonade, lemon pie and lemon ice cream,” wrote a nominator. “She makes our work environment very enjoyable with her smile, laughter and friendliness.”

Deborah L. Hawkins

Manager of parking control and events operations for Transportation and Parking

Deborah HawkinsNearly 75 colleagues nominated Hawkins, praising her leadership, operational experience, responsiveness and logistical savvy. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Carolina in 1988 and in 29 years of service to the University, she has overseen parking for the arrival and departure of two U.S. presidents, one first lady and two vice presidents. Though visits from dignitaries are uncommon, large-scale event parking is as regular as the 10,000-student migration each semester and as untimely as a funeral. In 2017, the Employee Forum presented Hawkins with its highest honor, the Three-Legged Stool Award, recognizing those who promote cooperation and collaboration among faculty, staff and students.

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