September 01, 2022

Three Susquehanna University staff members were recognized recently with the Signe S. Gates Appreciation Award — Allison Fordyce, head field hockey coach; Matthew Slingerland, supervisor of ground services; and Phil Winger, senior director of training and development.

Established in 2006 by Signe S. Gates ’71, chair of Susquehanna’s Board of Trustees, the award recognizes employees’ outstanding contributions to the institution and acknowledges their dedication to advancing the university’s strategic objectives through extraordinary work performance that inspires others to reach for similar achievement.

Fordyce was honored for her collaborative and supportive spirit. Fordyce also serves as the university’s senior woman administrator, a position in which she provides support and guidance to student-athletes, staff and administrators, oversees gender equity and Title IX issues and implements strategies and support in those areas.

“Allison has collaborated with the Office of Advancement in countless fundraising initiatives, from 30 in 30 fundraising challenges to our annual OneSU Day of Giving,” said Melissa Komora, vice president for advancement. “Allison is the first coach to say to us, ‘How can I help?’ Her support and behind-the-scenes work has never faltered. Allison’s commitment to SU is apparent across the SU community.”

Slingerland was recognized for his dedication to his employees and to maintaining Susquehanna’s 325 acres of grounds.

“Matthew’s commitment to SU and his crew shows in the work that they accomplish daily. He implemented a landscape program that keeps our grounds looking great throughout the year,” said Dale Ovelman, director of facilities management. “This includes overseeing a robust tree maintenance and renewal program, managing the impact of snow and ice on campus and working with athletics to make sure our fields are in the best condition possible for play.”

Winger was honored for stepping in to lead the Office of Residence Life while maintaining his other responsibilities.

“No one could have stepped in the way Phil did, with awareness, understanding, empathy, and the skill and perspective to know what needed to be done when to keep moving forward in the moment and toward future iterations of the work,” said Jennifer Bucher, vice president for operations. Adding that because he was “down in the weeds” with the residence life team, she said Winger “was able to best represent needs and to strategize action steps.”

Gates Award winners were honored at Susquehanna’s annual Opening Dinner on Aug. 23.