The winners of the Administrative/Professional Council (A/P) and Civil Service Council awards were announced at this year’s Founders Day.

A/P Council Distinguished Service Awards
Kirk Hines, University College
Hines joined University College in August 2009 as an academic advisor. Prior to Illinois State, he was a teacher, principal and superintendent of Central School District 51 in Washington, Ill. He quickly transitioned to working with a large population of Illinois State University’s first-year education majors, and acts as the liaison between University College and the School of Teaching and Learning. An advocate for education majors, he has been an active member of the Academic Advising Council’s Education Committee. Hines currently serves as the Academic Advisement functional lead for the LEAP Forward project.

Kris Harding, College of Education
Harding has been a member of Illinois State since 2000. She began as an academic advisor in University College and most recently served as an associate director in the Office of Admissions. She recently began serving a new role in the College of Education as the director of constituent relations where she manages outreach and communication. She served as a co-chair for Project Reach through the professional organization Illinois Association for College Admissions Counseling, gathering school supplies and funds to assist a low-income school in Illinois.

Lynn Steffen, Teacher Education Center
Steffen joined Illinois State in 1997 as the clinical experiences coordinator in the Cecilia J. Lauby Teacher Education Center. She currently serves as the associate director for the Center and is the primary liaison to the Illinois State Board of Education, ensuring teacher candidates are complying with state requirements. Lynn currently serves as the lead member for the LEAP/Forward project.

A/P Emerging Leader Award
LB Lyons, Athletics 

Lyons serves as the assistant athletics director for marketing. In this role, she directs many of the athletics departments’ creative efforts by developing and implementing the marketing and promotional plans, managing advertising plans and supervising the video production department, Redbird Productions. Under LB, there has been increased student attendance at games resulting in Red Alert being named the top Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) school in the Naismith Student Section of the Year award competition in 2013 and 2014.

A/P Esprit de Corps Award
Soemer Simmons, Languages, Literatures & Cultures
Simmons is currently an administrative aide in Languages, Literatures and Cultures, employed at Illinois State for the past 15 years. Prior to her current position, she was the assistant registrar, and worked as a liaison for the LEAP/Forward project on behalf of the Office of the University Registrar. During her service at Illinois State, Soemer has enjoyed serving as a member of the A/P Grievance Panel, A/P Council and Academic Senate, and was a recipient of the College of Education’s Outstanding Service by a Member of the University Community Award.

Civil Service Distinguished Service Awards
Maureen Peel, Office of the Vice President for Finance and Planning

A longtime employee, Peel has maintained a positive, bubbly outlook that is enjoyed by her co-workers. Maureen has served the Civil Service community well, working on countless projects and committees to raise awareness on campus.  Maureen’s drive and can-do attitude is admired by those who know her.

Lyndsie Schlink, University Marketing and Communications
Every picture tells a story. Those stories are the continuing history of Illinois State University. Schlink tirelessly attends hundreds of university events each year to capture the moment in time through photography. Her work creates new images that become a lasting part of the tapestry of Illinois State.

Civil Service Esprit de Corps Award
Darrell Elkin, Facilities Management
Elkin exemplifies boundless compassion for the workers in the building he services. He has been known to walk employees to their cars at night and leave notes of concern for employees, while always giving his all to the job at hand. He goes over the top by surprising Turner staff, faculty and students with seasonal displays.