University Excellence Awards Steering Committee


The University Excellence Awards honor outstanding UTSA faculty and staff who demonstrate excellence in teaching, research and work performance. The awards program encompasses UTSA’s two award categories (President’s Distinguished Faculty Achievement Awards and the University Excellence Staff Awards), as well as milestone Years of Service recognitions for all employees.

The University Excellence Awards Steering Committee is a university standing committee, and is classified as an institutional committee. The committee oversees all logistics of the award program, as well as the planning and production of UTSA’s annual University Excellence Award ceremony.


The committee is charged to develop overarching strategies for the high-level execution of the awards process and ceremony. From time to time, the committee shall review the awards logistics and ceremony components, and shall make recommendations to senior university leadership for improvements and alternative approaches. The committee is charged to ensure that the process for nominations, application review and awardee selections uphold the integrity of the University’s core values, and are timely and efficient. The committee shall ensure that all aspects of the awards program are worthy of the high honor the awards represent and offers a first-class experience to all awardees and university guests.

Committee Membership:

The committee shall be chaired by the executive director of special projects and protocol (University Relations). The committee shall be comprised of at least one representative from each of the following units:

  • University Relations
  • Academic Affairs
  • Business Affairs
  • People Excellence
  • Staff Senate
  • Faculty Senate
  • President's Office

Each representative shall be appointed by the associated vice president or chair of the governance group and serve until replaced.

Debra Del Toro Academic Affairs
Judy Verdon Academic Affairs
Cynthia Ramirez Academic Affairs
Chera Finkbiner Business Affairs
Mary Hernandez Business Affairs
Liz Rockstroh Business Affairs
Shelly Crofford People Excellence
Anne Peters University Relations
Angela Camarillo University Relations
Drew Vincent University Relations
Kiran Bhaganagar Faculty Senate
Sharon Martinez Staff Senate
Sara Tate Staff Senate
Kimberly Maldonado President's Office