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Chancellor Denton chats with staff members during the breakfast. On the chancellor's right are Printing Services manager Tom Tozier and Kathy McCabe, a transitional return to work coordinator in Risk Management; on her left is Printing Services production supervisor Andres Perez.

May 15, 2006

1,200 gather for Staff Appreciation Breakfast

By Louise Donahue

Stevenson Event Center took on a festive air Wednesday as a crowd of 1,200 sampled strawberries, scones, and scrambled eggs at the annual Staff Appreciation Breakfast.

Photo: Crowd outside

Surveying the crowd outside Stevenson Event Center are, from left, Mendel Spritzer, senior architectural associate at Physical Planning and Construction; Darryl Quan, budget analyst at ITS; and Andy Riblet, telecommunications analyst for ITS.

Photo: Staffer with baby

Ramona Zeno, Kresge College advising coordinator, attended the breakfast with her 20-month-old, Joseph. It was the first staff breakfast for both. Zeno's husband, Jason, is a Ph.D. candidate at UCSC. Photos: Louise Donahue

Chancellor Denton formally welcomed staff members to the gathering and thanked the Staff Advisory Board, which cosponsors the event with the Chancellor’s Office.

Denton also cited the extra efforts of Dining Services workers, who got up early to produce the bountiful breakfast buffet.  

The ingedients for the breakfast included 25 flats of strawberries, 325 pounds of potatoes, 160 pounds of eggs, 1,584 pancakes, 2,100 pieces of bacon, and 102 gallons of coffee.

From the reactions of the crowd, their hard work did not go unnoticed.

“Cooking eggs for the masses can be hard. These were really good,” said June Taylor, Academic Human Resouces coordinator for the School of Engineering.

“The strawberries were incredible,” said Joyce Smith, a payroll assistant in Academic Human Resources. “Those were the best I’ve had this season. I’m thinking of going back in for more.”

Drawings for prizes every half hour and music by a student jazz trio added to the celebratory mood.

Ed Titus of the Staff Advisory Board said the breakfast is the Staff Advisory Board’s most popular event. “I’ve only gotten positive feedback from staff,” he said. “When we first started it five years ago, we only had about 800. Every year, it gets a little larger.”

There was a sad note to this year’s breakfast, though. The crowd went quiet briefly after staff member David Silva-Espinoza asked for a moment of silence to honor Mary Melville of Financial Administrative Services and Transactions, who died in an automobile accident May 6.

Winners and those donating prizes at the event included:

Linda Spradley, $50 gift certificate to Bay Tree Bookstore; donated by Francisco Hernandez, vice chancellor of Student Affairs

Belinda Egan, $50 gift certificate to Bookshop Santa Cruz, donated by Chancellor Denice Denton

Jill Misunas, Champagne dinner for six at psychology professor Faye Crosby's home, donated by Faye Crosby

Linda Biancalana, $75 gift certificate to Macy's, donated by Ilse Kolbus, director of the Physical Plant

Diane Mesa, $50 gift certificate to Trader Joe's, donated by Buddy Morris of Environmental Health & Safety

Eric Pfau, $50 gift certificate to Ristorante Avanti; donated by Ristorante Avanti

Joni MacFarlane, $50 gift certificate at the University Center; donated by Bill Hyder, ITS

Dale Whyte, $100 gift certificate to Aqua Bleu; donated by Larry Merkley, vice provost, information technology

Nicole Rios, $50 gift certificate to Bay Tree Bookstore; donated by Francisco Hernandez

Rebecca Bard, $75 gift certificate to Los Olitas Cantina & Grille; donated by Ilse Kolbus

Stephanie Casher, two tickets to gala opening of Shakespeare Santa Cruz, donated by Meredith Michaels, vice chancellor of Planning and Budget

Lynne Riccio, $50 gift certificate to Bookshop Santa Cruz; donated by Chancellor Denice Denton

Susan Williams, $100 gift certificate to Crow's Nest; donated by Tom Vani, vice chancellor of Business and Administrative Services

Alina Tejera, $50 gift certificate to Bay Tree Bookstore, donated by Bay Tree Bookstore

Heather Lewis, $100 Dining Passport at University Center; donated by Campus Provost and EVC David Kliger

Carolyn Stark, Wellness Card for a quarter, and a personal training session, donated by  Wellness Center Ryan Andrews.

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