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Lynn Wakefield Unsung Hero Staff Award

The Lynn Wakefield Unsung Hero Award at Indiana University School of Medicine recognizes staff employees who demonstrate outstanding reliability in the execution of duties without expectation of recognition. This award encourages and reinforces the IU School of Medicine core values of cooperation and excellence. The award is named in recognition of the contributions made by Lynn Wakefield during her tenure at IU School of Medicine.

Nominate a candidate

Any faculty or staff may nominate any staff employee within IU School of Medicine. Nominations are due July 24th.

Current Winners

anita gupta portrait

Anita Gupta

Clinical Research Specialist
Division of Gastroenterology/Hepatology
Department of Medicine

portrait of mallory mack

Mallory Mack

Residency Coordinator
Department of Ophthalmology

portrait of adrienne phillips

Adrienne Phillips

Administrative Specialist
Office of Graduate Medical Education


  • Provide a visible and powerful way to communicate and reinforce those behaviors, achievements, and outcomes most important to advancing IU School of Medicine.
  • Encourage reliability in the execution of duties without expectation of recognition.
  • Recognize and reward outstanding contribution.

Outstanding Performance

The IU School of Medicine Lynn Wakefield Staff Leadership Award is an annual award of up to $3,000 conferred to full-time IU School of Medicine staff who have been extraordinary* in their commitment, dependability, and execution. This award is not a substitute for a base salary increase, a temporary pay increase, or an equity adjustment.

  • Commitment: takes on shifts or tasks that advance the tripartite mission of education, patient care, and research that others may not notice or not want to do; sees the connection of their role to advancing the school’s mission and takes pride in them (e.g. janitor in a hospital believes his work prevents patient infection).
  • Dependability: can be counted on day after day to perform quality work, follow through in a timely manner, and pitch in when others need help (e.g. without being asked or begrudging, decides to spend a holiday weekend reviewing every P&T dossier for accuracy)
  • Execution: has an eagle eye for identifying errors that need to be corrected, takes pride in producing work at a high level of accuracy and detail-orientation (e.g. goes above and beyond to improve the product of a document, presentation, etc).

*Extraordinary contributions are above and beyond the usual responsibilities, occur over a finite period of time, and do not recur on a regular basis.


  • Employees must hold a full-time appointed position within IU School of Medicine and be employed on the date the payment is awarded.
  • Vice chairs excluded given eligibility for other staff awards.
  • Employees must have a minimum of one year of service in IU School of Medicine.
  • Employees must have a current written performance evaluation (within the last 12 months) on file.
  • The extraordinary contributions must have been made within 12-18 months prior to the nomination.
  • Employees must not have current (within the last 12 months) corrective action.
  • Employees must not have a current performance improvement plan.


A lump-sum discretionary bonus payment(s) of up to $3,000 for a maximum of two staff employees in a fiscal year may be considered. Payments will be distributed in the fall of each fiscal year.

Each award recipient will be honored with a monetary award and will be highlighted on the IU School of Medicine Faculty Affairs and Professional Development (FAPD) website.

Nomination Process

  • A staff member may be nominated during the annual call for nominations.
  • Any member of the faculty or staff may nominate any staff employee within the IU School of Medicine.
  • If a nominator is not the nominee’s supervisor, a letter of support from the supervisor is required.
  • The nomination letter, including supporting documentation (performance evaluation and supervisor letter if applicable), should be submitted. Nominations will be considered active for two cycles.

Nominate a candidate

Selection Process

  • A review committee comprised of leaders from IU School of Medicine Faculty Affairs and Professional Development and Department of Human Resources, with at least three ad hoc members, will determine the most deserving nominations of up to two awards annually.
  • Once selected, awardees will be notified by email with a cc to the supervisor

Human Resource Services will verify eligibility, review for completeness, and resolve any questions prior to selecting awardees. Requests will be evaluated by a review committee against the criteria in the discretionary bonus guidelines, and requests meeting the criteria will be forwarded to the Dean and Executive Associate Deans with a recommendation for approval. Nominators submitting requests will be notified if the bonus has been approved or does not meet the criteria in the guidelines.

Past Winners

2019 Kori Nelson, Pediatrics Fellowship Program Coordinator
2019 Bridget Working, Associate Director of Academic Administration for the Department of Medicine
2018 Debbie Wombles, Senior Administrative Assistant in Adolescent Medicine
2018 Sheila Reynolds, Grants Specialist