By Laura Fenton
Inez Todd didn’t stand up when her name was called. It wasn’t until it was said a
second time that she realized she’d won.
Happy and nervous at the same time, Todd walked to the podium to receive the Distinguished
Employee of the Year Award for 2011 at the ceremony in June for her 11-year commitment
to excellence with the University.
As senior administrative secretary for University Libraries, Todd works with a small team to ensure the department and
library-sponsored events run smoothly.
“One thing I stress [is] it’s not about me,” Todd said. “It’s not just my work; it’s
the University Libraries’ work. When I mess up and you’re there to help, it’s not
a reflection on Inez, but a reflection on University Libraries. So, let’s work together
because we want to shine in the eyes of others.”
Her daily tasks include managing Dean Sylverna Ford’s calendar of conferences, meetings and events; submitting expense reports for
the office; and stepping in as the contact person for the library when Ford is out
of the office.
Ford refers to Todd as her “right-hand person,” because the two have worked together
for all of Todd’s tenure.
Outside of work duties, Todd does all she can to help students. She volunteers for
Warm Welcome, carrying boxes on move-in days for incoming students, and answers phones
for the strong U of M Call Center, answering financial aid and registration questions.
“I know that without the students, there wouldn’t be a university, so I try to be
there to answers calls they have about their packets or what forms they need to register
for classes,” Todd said. “I just get a kick out of being able to help someone.”
Inez Todd, with trophy, visits with family members at the University Center after
being named a Distinguished Employee of the Year. (Photo by Rhonda Cosentino)
Her compassion, dedication and motivation make the office, department and fellow employees
strive to be better.
“There have been numerous times that Todd has stepped in to complete unfinished tasks
assigned to her co-workers, and without a frown, she handled it as if it was her very
own,” said Sonji Wright-Savage of the collection and management office in the library.
“She is always willing to arrive early and stay late. She is a motivator who strives
for excellence in just about everything. Whenever I need a helping hand or someone
to confide in, I turn to Todd because I know she will help and will listen with care
Said libraries co-worker James Hudson, “Todd is a steady, prominent team player who
sets very good examples for others to follow. Inez is a great contributor to the success
of University Libraries by getting involved with student activities and being a member
of local, state and national organizations.”