What is the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award?
The Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award was created in 2007 to honor the life and work of our late colleague and friend, Catherine Louise Rihn Lester. In her 27 years as an administrative information technology professional at The University of Texas at Austin, Cathy worked tirelessly to develop systems that support and advance the University’s standards of excellence in education, research, and public service. The award is an unrestricted, one-time cash gift which will be awarded to one or more individuals each year.
Since 2009, the committee has presented two awards: the traditional Excellence award recognizing someone with an enduring track record for excellence, and a Rising Star award recognizing a person in the early years of their IT career who shows extraordinary promise.
Who is eligible for the award?
Information technology employees at the University of Texas at Austin whose primary responsibilities include management or development of administrative software systems and solutions are eligible for the award.
What are the criteria for winning the award?
Recipients of the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award will demonstrate the qualities for which Cathy Lester was known. These qualities include:
- Commitment to serve the University and its goals
- Breadth and depth of knowledge
- Active participation in mentoring and educating others
- Partnership with business clients to provide strategic, innovative, and effective technical solutions
- Adherence to core principles and best practices
- Emphasis on the quality of results
The committee will present two awards: the traditional Excellence award recognizing someone with an enduring track record for excellence, and a Rising Star award for someone in the early years of their IT career who show extraordinary promise.
Who will determine who receives the award?
The recipient(s) of the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award will be determined by a Selection Committee consisting of two representatives selected by the Administrative IT Leaders group, two members of the Cathy Lester Award Committee, and one past recipient of the award.
Who can nominate candidates for the award?
Any current employee of The University of Texas at Austin can nominate candidates for the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award.
How can I nominate someone for the award?
To nominate a colleague for the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award, complete a written nomination form and submit it by the deadline to one of the Award Committee members. The nomination form is available in PDF format.
How is the award funded?
The cash awards are funded from the annual proceeds of a permanent endowment managed by the Development Office of the University of Texas at Austin and The University of Texas System. The endowment was established from memorial gifts donated after Cathy Lester’s death in 2006, and has received continuing donations since its inception both from individuals and from fund-raising activities of the Award Committee.
Those wishing to support this approach to recognizing and fostering excellence in IT at U.T. are encouraged to make a tax-deductible contribution to the endowment. See our Donations page for more information.
Who are the past recipients of the award?
Past recipients of the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award are listed here.
Please keep me informed about the award and other events.
To stay informed about the Cathy Lester IT Excellence Memorial Award nomination procedures, deadlines, winners and events, you may subscribe yourself to our group email list. Please go to UT Lists to subscribe yourself through our web page, or click here to subscribe using your email client. In the body of the email, you will need to replace “Your_email” with your email address and “Your_name” with your name as you wish it to appear on the list.