Kayla Garrett, Administrative Assistant in the Department of Art and Design, has won Troy University’s Vergil Parks McKinley Award.
Garrett, who has served in the role since 2016, received the award from Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr., Chancellor, on Thursday during a ceremony in the Lamar P. Higgins Ballroom on the Troy Campus. She was nominated by Greg Skaggs, Department Chair.
The McKinley Award is the highest honor that Troy University gives to a non-faculty staff member. It is presented quarterly to an employee who has demonstrated outstanding attitude, innovation and work ethic. The award was established by the late John McKinley, former Texaco CEO, in honor of his father, Vergil Parks McKinley, who was a Troy University professor during the early 20th century and was key to the development of the University’s athletic program. Winners of this award receive an engraved clock and a $1,000 stipend.
In his nomination, Skaggs called Garrett a problem solver.
“She has been extremely helpful in managing grant budgets, acquiring new equipment and technology, researching alumni contacts, and much more,” Skaggs said. “She also has been a tremendous asset helping with student advisement, course scheduling, hiring new faculty and the many duties that go unnoticed. She is an integral part of our staff, but, more importantly, she is a part of our family.”
Skaggs said Garrett frequently goes beyond her job description to help others.
“Mrs. Garrett quickly comes to aid when needed and goes above and beyond her job description,” he said. “Both students and faculty find her friendly and helpful, willing to solve both minor and major issues that arise. She is an excellent example of what a McKinley Award recipient should be.”
Garrett said she was honored to receive the award.
“I love my faculty. I am very grateful to receive this award and grateful that they thought me worthy of the nomination,” Garrett said. “I also want to thank my mentor, Ms. Jane Barwood in the Department of Theatre and Dance, who has taught me everything I know about being a departmental secretary.”