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Outstanding Staff Awards

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Frequently Asked Questions

Check back often for updated information.

Award Categories

Sac State’s strategic plan serves as a roadmap for the University. It was collaboratively formed from the perspectives, experiences, and feedback from stakeholder groups across the entire campus community.

Every employee contributes to our strategic success. Here are just a few ways that employees fit in to the Strategic Plan. Across the University, staff and administrators:

  • Create opportunities for student success
  • Remove administrative barriers
  • Form community partnerships
  • Make students and employees feel included
  • Secure philanthropic funding
  • Help attract and retain high performing talent to Sac State
  • Employ strategies that promote equity for employees through training, education, and professional development
  • Keeping the campus safe and beautiful

…These are just a few examples of how employees from every corner of the University have a hand in moving Sacramento State toward the goals in the Strategic Plan and helping our students succeed.


  • All staff and administrators (all non-faculty personnel) are eligible for nomination. Please see the award descriptions for information about which awards are designated for staff and which are designated for MPPs.
  • Members of Cabinet, faculty, and student employees are not eligible to be nominated, but are encouraged to submit nominations.

Yes! Any staff or manager (excluding Cabinet members) is eligible for an award.

Yes, but awardees will be ineligible for consideration for the three subsequent years in the same category following the honor.

MVP awardees will be ineligible for the award for the subsequent five years.

If a selection committee member or one of their relatives is nominated, they will be recused from scoring that award.

Absolutely. An employee can nominate their colleague, supervisor, or someone they work with from a different area.

Yes! If an eligible employee would like to nominate themselves for an individual or team award, they are encouraged to do so.

Absolutely. An employee can win an individual and/or a team award.

Nomination Process

Any member of the Sac State community including staff, administrators, faculty, students, or community members may submit an Outstanding Staff Award nomination.

  • Complete the nomination form online for the appropriate Outstanding Staff Awards Nomination Form. Nominations will only be accepted through the online form. Submissions should be as detailed as possible in order to provide the selection committee with a significant amount of material for review.
  • Provide contact information for three individuals who support the nomination.
  • It is recommended that you prepare your nomination in advance, using the prompts from the form, and then copy and paste the text into the appropriate fields of the nomination form.

Selection Process

  • Human Resources and the Office of Equal Opportunity will confirm the eligibility of nominees.
  • After the nomination period ends, the selection committee will review all nominations and submit their recommendations to the university president. The president will then select the winners and present them with the award, at which time all nominees will be notified of the results.

  • An open call for participation on the selection committee was sent to the campus community.
  • Award recipients from the previous year have been invited to participate on the selection committee.
  • To have proportional representation, there are two (2) members each from Academic Affairs, Administration & Business Affairs, and Student Affairs, and one (1) member each from University Advancement, Inclusive Excellence, Information Resources & Technology, the Division of the President, and University Auxiliaries.

Winner Announcements & Awards

Award recipients will be notified and announced publicly via SacSend in June and celebrated at a reception in October.

The Jody Nelsen MVP award comes with a $1,000 prize. (Please note that the cash prize is taxable.)

The MVP will receive a designated parking space near their work area for one year. (A parking permit will still need to be purchased.)

Steering Committee

  • Bena Arao, Director of Academic Affairs Resources
  • Tatiana Azad, Inclusive Excellence and Advancement Analyst
  • Michael Nguyen, Associate Vice President, Inclusive Excellence
  • Angel Thayer-Smith, Director of Administration, Facilities Management
  • Kristen Tudor, Chief of Staff
  • Leah Walukones, Special Events Coordinator, University Events
  • Reva Wittenberg, Student Affairs Assessment, and Workplace-Wellness Manager