- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Sometimes you'll see him sitting cross-legged on the floor, circled by first graders. They're asking questions like "What is an insect?" and "How long do insects live?" and "What do they eat?"
Sometimes you'll see him holding Madagascar hissing cockroaches and explaining why they hiss.
Other times he's engrossed in answering questions from a fellow scientist, a walk-in visitor or a journalist.
Very dedicated, committed and enthusiastic. That's Steve Heydon, senior museum scientist at the Bohart Museum of Entomology at UC Davis.
That's why we're glad to see Heydon receive the top award in the general contributions category at the UC Davis Staff Assembly's Citation for Excellence awards ceremony, held Aug. 2 at the chancellor's residence.
Chancellor Linda Katehi presented him the award.
Heydon was among two other individuals and two teams singled out for distinguished awards. Their names will be engraved on a perpetual plaque at the Walter A. Buehler Alumni and Visitors' Center.
Katehi praised them for their time, efforts and investments. “I’m so proud of you,” she told them. Rob Kerner, Staff Assembly president, read the accolades and described them as the “cream of the crop” of UC Davis employees.
“Steve is a true UC Davis goodwill ambassador in that he takes pride in the university, his department, his colleagues, and his work, which in itself, has drawn national and international acclaim, Kerner said, in announcing the award.
His colleagues, who nominated him for the award, lauded him for bringing out “the best in everyone” and as someone who “sincerely cares." They added: "In his collaborations with other universities and government agencies, he is known for his almost intuitive competency and his quick response to queries. In short, he is a prized employee, the best of the best.”
Anyone who knows Steve Heydon (who has a doctorate in entomology) knows that he is "always willing to drop what he’s doing to help out a scientist, reporter, staff member, volunteer or the public," his colleagues wrote. "Steve treats everyone with the utmost respect and understanding, an earmark of an outstanding UC Davis employee."
Steve Heydon joins other outstanding UC Davis employees as 2012 recipients of the distinguished awards.
Individual Award, Supervision: Kathy Canevari, a former supervisor with UC Davis Extension who retired earlier this year.
Individual Award: Campus Service: Paul Cody, coordinator of the Campus Union Center for Student Involvement.
Team Award: General Contributions: School of Veterinary Medicine Dean’s Office, Curricular Support, comprised of Mike Beech, Melinda Carlson, Robin Houston, Linda Royce, Erin Seay, Linda Souza, Teresa Suter, and Ken Taylor.
Team Award: Campus Service: Office of Student Development management team comprised of Catrina Wagner, Courtney Robinson, Richard Ronquillo, Chuck Huneke, and Lisa Papagni.
What's it all about? The Staff Assembly annually seeks nominees for these honors. UC Davis employees must have distinguished themselves in one or more of the three areas of outstanding achievement: general contributions, campus service or supervision.
Hats off to all the winners and nominees who make UC Davis proud!