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Employees Receive Honors for Jobs Well Done


Fordham employees with a combined 1,000 years of experience were honored in front of their peers, family and friends on March 8 at the University Convocation.

Grace Vernon, Ph.D., president of the faculty senate, leads the awardees into the ceremony. Vernon was awarded a Bene Merenti medal for 40 years of teaching.
Photo by Ryan Brenizer

Forty-eight faculty members, administrators and staffers were recognized for their distinguished service. The awards included the Bene Merenti Medal, the Archbishop Hughes Medal and theSursum Corda Award.

The Bene Merenti Medal honors faculty members who have been with the University for 20 or 40 years. The Archbishop Hughes Medal recognizes members of the administrative staff. TheSursum Corda Award is the University’s newest honor, established in 2005 by Joseph M. McShane, S.J., president of Fordham, and is given to members of the staff who have made outstanding contributions to the life and mission of the University.

“We thank you for sharing with us these medalists, whose wisdom, dedication, kindness and passion are in line with the mission of Fordham,” Father McShane said to the crowd of family and friends. “Although they walked up here alone to receive their medals, the stage was crowded with supporters.”

Six members of the faculty received the received the Bene Merenti Medal for 40 years of teaching. They are: Robert M. Chazine, Ph.D., professor of social work; Michael Lanzarone, professor emeritus of law; David R. Chabot, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology; Claude J. Mangum, Ph.D., associate professor of African and African-American Studies; Daniel J. Sullivan, S.J., professor emeritus of biology; and Grace M. Vernon, Ph.D., professor of biology and chair of natural sciences.

Two employees received the Sursum Corda Award. Veronica Boland, administrative assistant to the dean of Fordham College at Rose Hill, has an “uncompromising insistence on doing things right,” according to the short bio written in the ceremony program. Lek Ndoj, a custodian, was noted in the program for being a “jack-of-all-trades and a master of all.”

The remaining Bene Merenti and Archbishop Hughes Medals went to faculty and administrators who have given 20 years of service to Fordham.

“I have found myself thanking God for all of you,” Father McShane said. “I’m especially grateful this year. This year has been unlike any we’ve ever known. Challenges have shaken our confidence as a nation. And although Fordham is not immune, we here face the future with a sense of relief. Fordham will be strong into the future as long as we continue to be blessed with your devotion and wisdom.”


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