3 chosen as UAB VIPs for first-quarter 2023

uab vip award squareNominations for second-quarter 2023 honorees are open through May 24; submit a nomination online.Toby W. Tripp, access control system technician in Physical Security; Andrew B. Crouse, Ph.D., director of Research and Operations in the Hugh Kaul Precision Medicine Institute; and Carin Mayo, program manager for graduate programs in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, are the first-quarter 2023 honorees for the UAB Shared Values in Action Program. The UAB VIP Awards honor employees whose work exemplifies and embodies one or more of the university’s shared values — integrity, stewardship, collaboration, accountability, respect, excellence and achievement, and diversity and inclusiveness.

Honorees are nominated by their colleagues and selected by a committee of individuals from across the campus and UAB Hospital. Nominations for second-quarter 2023 honorees are open through May 24; submit a nomination online. One of 12 VIP honorees throughout the year will be selected for the new President’s Award for Excellence in Shared Values.

Toby TrippToby TrippToby W. Tripp

Tripp is known for his skill at work and at solving problems and is often sought for guidance.

“He has unquestionably become the ‘go-to’ person for most anything regarding service projects due to his past efforts. Toby has been able to explain things clearly for the team and keeps the project moving forward,” said Mike Hasselbrink, director of Physical Security.

“He is great in every facet of what we do,” said Robin Roberts, access control systems technician. He has a very high skill set. He is not afraid to tackle tough issues.”

“Many times over the last few years, I have approached him on a non-standard matter with only a vague idea in my mind of what we needed or wanted to do. He took the initiative to figure out what the area needed with minimal guidance from me, and then delivered on the task as well,” Hasselbrink continued. “He always goes above and beyond the call of duty in pursuing excellence.”

Tripp is very supportive of his colleagues and a dedicated collaborator. When fellow technicians come across a problem, they often call Tripp.

“Toby has that ability to walk you through what to do and how to fix the problem,” Roberts said. “He often helps people who do not have a good technical skill set and does not shame them or talk about them in a negative light. He brags on what they did well instead of shaming them for what they could not do.”

“Whenever he is called out for his amazing work on the project,” Hasselbrink continued, “he makes it clear that it is a group effort, never wanting to take all the credit. Speaking even more to his team spirit, he is always collaborative — never wanting to step on toes or make decisions alone. He understands the collaborative nature of the project and works to make sure people feel included and have a say.”

crouse insideAndrew B. CrouseAndrew B. Crouse

Crouse, who also is a scientist with the Hugh Kaul Precision Medicine Institute, exemplifies inclusiveness, collaboration, excellence and achievement, and stewardship daily.

“With every new project, grant, manuscript, etc., Andy takes the time to listen to the ideas and concerns of every collaborator, going above and beyond to ensure that everyone’s contributions are valued and integrated into the final product,” said Aleksandra Foksinska, program manager with the Hugh Kaul Precision Medicine Institute. “If there is a conflict among collaborators, Andy helps facilitate conversations to work through disagreements constructively.”

Crouse is driven to excellence in his field and continues to ask questions and seek answers.

“He has encouraged me to always embrace the uncertainty of science, to never be afraid to say ‘I don’t know,’ and to never doubt my ability to learn a new concept or skill,” Foksinska said. “He is always striving to learn and grow in the field of translational science and precision medicine, while also mentoring several undergraduate students to do the same. His commitment to their success has been truly inspiring and has created a culture of excellence at the Precision Medicine Institute.”

“He embodies the values that are essential to the success of our institution,” Foksinska continued, “and I am grateful to have him as a colleague.”

carin mayo insideCarin MayoCarin Mayo

Mayo is known for her commitment to UAB’s shared values of respect, diversity and inclusiveness, and excellence and achievement.

As a part of her role at UAB, Mayo develops and fosters relationships with a diverse group of people, including graduate students, alumni and the wider community.

“Carin maintains communication and interaction among our students and alumni, who are an active network of change agents in the Birmingham community and beyond,” said Nevbahar Ertas, Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration. “In each of these interactions, Carin demonstrates various ways of showing respect to others. She is always kind and supportive. She gives her time to listen attentively. She makes everyone feel valued and recognized.”

Mayo was recognized for her dedication to inclusiveness and collaboration in 2021 when she was awarded the Gaston Excellence in Mentoring Award for her work mentoring upcoming public administrators.

In 2021, Carin implemented a Diversity in Leadership Lunch Series in collaboration with the UAB Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the UAB African American Studies Program. This lunch series served as an opportunity for UAB students to hear from a diverse group of public service leaders in the Birmingham community.

“Carin recognizes that diversity in leadership means greater depth and breadth of experience and perspective, and the exchange of human experiences inspires lasting change for people on a personal level,” Ertas explained. “This series allowed students opportunities for mentorship, networking, internship and appreciation of diverse pathways into public service careers.”

“Carin Mayo rises to any professional or academic challenge and adds tremendous value to any educational or professional setting,” Ertas continued. “Creating innovative courses for our undergraduate political science program, serving on university-, college- or department-level advisory boards, managing public servant training programs, and organizing guest lectures on ethical leadership in collaboration with the Honors College are just a few examples of her commitment to excellence and achievement.

“Carin Mayo is an indispensable asset for our Master of Public Administration program, the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, and the broader UAB community.”