Spring 2021 Classified Staff Excellence Award recipient: Damon Grady

Damon Grady

Congratulations to Damon Grady, Campus Security Sergeant, Security and Safety Services, recipient of the 2021 Spring Quarter Classified Staff Excellence Award!  

Damon Grady has been with Clark College’s Security and Safety Department since 1997. He served as a Campus Security Officer for 20 years before being promoted to the sergeant’s rank in January of 2018. Comments about Grady include: 

  • “He frequently takes after-hours calls and adjusts his shifts so that his people get the support they need. Managing the schedule for 17 people, half of whom are part-time, to provide 24-hour coverage is a difficult and complicated endeavor.”  
  • “Damon has gone beyond his role. When he noticed the decrease in on-campus staff presences, he purposefully expanded his knowledge on all the student-facing services and learned how they work to best support Clark students so he would be prepared to answer students’ questions during the COVID-19 pandemic.”  
  • “Damon works closely with his subordinates to ensure they have the training and guidance necessary to be successful in their respective roles.” 
  • “Damon responded to a medical call that involved a person with a life-threatening injury. He was quick to respond while properly assessing the situation and keeping those involved safe and calm until EMS arrived.”  

Congratulations as well to the other Spring 2021 nominees: 

  • Christy Lewis- Fiscal Technician, Accounting Services 
  • Jennifer King- Program Specialist, Financial Aid 
  • Jordan De Van- Program Specialist, Enrollment Services 
  • Kayla Escott- Program Manager, Financial Aid 
  • Malissa Pierce- Program Specialist, Transitional Studies Division 

Christy Lewis 

Christy Lewis is a Fiscal Technician in Accounting Services. Comments from her nomination include: 

  • “Christy has served on the ACE Scholarship Committee multiple times, helping to give funds to college members and their families to help make higher education possible.” 
  • “When Accounting converted to a new system, Christy kept a positive attitude and learned to work through the bumps and challenges of change.”   
  • “Christy works with customers to help them understand their accounting-related issues, no matter who they are or their level of understanding.” 
  • “Christy always treats all people with respect and kindness when serving them and working through their request and issues.” 

Jennifer King 

Jennifer King is a Program Specialist in the Office of Financial Aid. Comments from her nomination include:  

  • “Jen awards more than 600 students with emergency funds, each term. This spring term, Jen awarded additional funds to students, which means she made 1200 awards. Jen agreed to this overwhelming task in the midst of preparing financial aid packages for fall term—an enormous undertaking. When we have a student who has a significant emergency, Jen works quickly to award that student immediately.”  
  • “Jen manages multiple tasks, serves on committees, and prioritizes people first in the work that she does. She leads with kindness and a smile and is always a pleasure to work with.” 
  • “Weekly, she commits significant time and energy to meet the emergent needs of students during an uncertain and stressful time.” 
  • “Jen’s commitment to creating an effective, efficient program has made a difference to hundreds of student emergency-grant recipients, many of whom report being homeless or at risk of homelessness.” 

Jordan De Van 

Jordan De Van is a Program Specialist in Enrollment Services. Comments from her nomination include: 

  • “Jordan has one of the strongest senses of customer service and how it should be demonstrated. She not only responds quickly to inquiries from students and other departments, she responds happily despite her busy workload.”  
  • “Jordan is always helpful and understanding when assisting others outside of her department. Instead of rushing through issues that arise with tracking student grades in the database system, she takes the time to investigate, and assists instructors to better prepare them if the issue were to arise again in the future.” 
  • “Jordan’s knowledge, expertise and sense of humor always makes working with her a pleasure.” 
  • “She assists each individual in a way that they can understand the steps of the process and provides them with direction that helps them along further in the process—all with a smile on her face.” 

Kayla Escott 

Kayla Escott is a Program Manager in the Office of Financial Aid. Comments from her nomination include: 

  • “Every task that Kayla approaches is done with the student’s best interest in mind. She goes above and beyond in all aspects of her position, whether that is intentionally meeting one-on-one with the staff she oversees, taking time to schedule an in-depth appointment with a student, or leading numerous project efforts within our office. Every project she tackles is done efficiently and thoroughly in spite of tight deadlines and competing priorities.”  
  • “Kayla provides outstanding customer service, both directly and indirectly. She intentionally takes time to meet with students in unique and challenging situations. Beyond this, she ensures that any students who interact with the Financial Aid office receive excellent customer service by equipping front desk staff with effective tools to do so.”   
  • “To encourage comradery and team spirit, Kayla initiated a virtual ‘Spirit Week’ for staff to help keep team spirits and communication up while working remotely.” 
  • “Kayla has always shown a strong commitment to equity in all aspects of her work. One example is how she recently began working with Disability Support Services to convert all Financial Aid documents to a format that is accessible for students using reader devices. 

Malissa Pierce 

Malissa Pierce is a Program Specialist in Transitional Studies. Comments from her nomination include: 

  • “Malissa had grown the Open Doors program within one year from 10 students to almost 40. She is trying to volunteer with the Vancouver School District Truancy Board so she can understand her students’ needs better.”  
  • “Malissa actively engages in campus diversity strategies; supports recruitment, retention, completion efforts of students from diverse backgrounds, participates in equitable hiring practices for Transitional Studies department, and Malissa is learning Spanish so she can better support our Spanish-speaking students.”  
  • “Malissa is a great communicator and works across multiple departments on campus to make sure that every department has the right information and has the opportunity to discuss with her if they need further clarification.” 
  • “Malissa loves working one-on-one with her students. She is constantly reaching out to other departments for assistance in making her students’ college experience as smooth as possible.” 

About the Classified Staff Excellence Award

The Classified Staff Excellence Award was established in 2005 and recognizes classified staff who have demonstrated exemplary work performance, outstanding customer service, a positive and cooperative spirit and special achievements or contributions to the college community. Through the support of the Clark College Foundation, the recipient will receive a $400 cash award.