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Administration and Finance Holiday Luncheon Recap - December 2022


The Division of Administration and Finance kicked off the festive season at the division’s annual holiday luncheon on December 8th at a packed Houston Room in the Student Center South, with Houston Public Media’s Ernie Manouse serving as the event MC. 

The luncheon was a time for colleagues to gather and celebrate the season and enjoy a traditional holiday meal. The meal was accompanied by festive beverages such as hot chocolate and apple cider and popular mini pecan pies and holiday sugar cookies for dessert. The theme for 2022’s A&F holiday luncheon was A&F Ugly Sweater Get Together, and attendees showcased their best holiday attire. 

Stand-out sweaters ran the gamut from festive Star Wars sweaters to holiday classics like Die Hard and homemade colorful and vibrant sweaters. 

A&F Senior Vice Chancellor/Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance Raymond Bartlett spoke to the attendees and thanked them for a magnificent year. 

Read more about the division's holiday luncheon.

AF holiday celebration group


Administration and Finance Represented at NACAS Conference - November 2022

NACAS Volunteers

The Division of Administration and Finance was well represented in this year's NACAS C3X 2022 Annual Conference & Expo, held in Las Vegas, Nevada. Representing the Division were colleagues from the Office of Administration, Auxiliary Services, University of Houston Police Department, Cougar Card and University Services. The visit proved fruitful for the division as Esmeralda Valdez, Executive Director of University Services, was named NACAS Volunteer of the Year and was appointed to the NACAS South and National Board of Directors. Additionally, Dr. Emily Messa, Senior Associate Vice President for Administration, was appointed Vice President for the NACAS Foundation Board.

Bikeep Pilot Program Launches on Campus - November 2022


The University of Houston is now home to two Bikeep smart bicycle parking stations. The state-of-the-art innovative bicycle parking station enables secure parking and deters bicycle theft. 

The stations at Butler Plaza and the University Lofts are free for the campus community. The only requirement is that the user’s bicycle must be registered with Parking and Transportation Services. 

The decision to bring smart bicycle parking stations to campus was generated from a conversation about the challenges the campus community has when choosing the correct type of lock to keep their bicycles secured, said Dr. Emily Messa, Senior Associate Vice President for Administration. For more about this story read here.

UHPDs Walk in the Dark Helps Make the Campus Safer - November 2022

walk in the dark

The University of Houston Police Department welcomed members of the campus community, including faculty, staff, and students, to their annual Walk in the Dark community event on November 16. For this event, community members walk the university at night alongside campus staff members to locate areas that may benefit from increased lighting or other safety improvements. 

This year's walk proved one of the most successful in recent history. “We had a great turnout for this Walk in the Dark,” said UHPD Sergeant Dina Padovan. UHPD was joined by Student Government Association leaders, Justin Dart Jr. Student Accessibility Center staff, Facilities/Construction Management’s Power Plant electricians, Fire Life & Safety staff and Parking and Transportation staff. For more about this story read here.

CERT Training Educates Faculty and Staff in Disaster Preparedness - November 2022

cert teamA mass causality incident hit Houston, severely impacting Minute Maid Park, PNC Stadium, the George R. Brown Convention Center, and the University of Houston. While that scenario isn’t true, it was for the faculty and staff members who were part of this semester’s eight-week CERT training course organized by the Office of Emergency Management and Fire Life & Safety.

CERT, which stands for Community Emergency Response Team, is a training program that aims to prepare participants to help themselves, their families, and their neighbors in the event of a disaster or mass casualty incident. The training is sponsored by the City of Houston and Harris County and has been offered at the university since 2011. It is open to faculty, staff, and students. For more about this story read here.

A&F Staff Appreciation Luncheon Puts Spotlight on Employees - October 2022

  • staff appreciation

    The Administration and Finance Staff Appreciation Luncheon was a time for colleagues from across the Division to come together to enjoy a meal, re-connect, and celebrate accomplishments and employee years of service milestones. The Staff Appreciation Luncheon was held on October 4th in a packed Houston Room in the Student Center South. Read more about the Staff Appreciation Luncheon and visit the event website to see all the award recipients.

UH Dining Brings JoyFul Fall FestiFul to Campus - October 2022

farmers market

Fall was in the air on October 5th around Cougar Woods Dining Commons with UH Dining Services hosting the JoyFul Fall FestiFul. The JoyFul Fall Festiful was organized to celebrate and usher in the autumn season via fall-themed menu options at all UH dining halls.

The prized highlight of the festival was a Farmer’s Market outside Cougar Woods Dining Commons. It featured over 25 local vendors making it the largest farmer’s market to date to take place at the university. Read more about the JoyFul Fall Festiful

UHPD’s National Night Out Connects Students with Officers - October 2022

National Night Out

Officers from the University of Houston Police Department and the Houston Police Department converged at the Student Center South Circle Drive in early October for a good cause.  

 The law enforcement agencies, along with other campus safety departments united at the Student Center South Circle Drive for National Night Out, the annual community-engagement event that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie. Read more about National Night Out

Employee Recognition - October 2022


Equal Opportunity Services Welcomes New Assistant VC/VP

Rebecca Lake joins Equal Opportunity Services as its new Assistant Vice Chancellor/Vice President. Lake will oversee the University’s anti-discrimination initiatives, including reviewing policies and institutional strategies aimed at eliminating sexual misconduct, discrimination and harassment targeted to protected identities.

Lake, a Harvard Law School graduate, recently served as Senior Director for Equal Access at the University of Houston-Victoria (UHV). As the campus-designated Title IX and Equal Opportunity Coordinator at UHV for more than five years, she oversaw anti-discrimination efforts including campus educational efforts, training and Equal Opportunity case management.
cougar cudos

Cougar Cudos

Cougar Cudos goes to Parking and Transportation customer service representative Tracy Wiggins for providing stellar assistance over the phone.

To nominate a fellow Staff member and learn more about Cougar Cudos

A&F Student Ambassadors Lend a Helping Hand - September 2022

The start of the fall semester at the University of Houston saw an uptick in business for some Administration and Finance departments, and the division’s 11 Student Ambassadors were up for lending a helping hand. The Student Ambassadors aided departments like the Cougar Card office and Parking and Transportation, to name a few. Read more about how A&F’s Student Ambassadors provided a helping hand at the start of the fall semester.

Behind the Badge Event - September 2022

Behind the Badge

The University of Houston’s Behind the Badge event returned to a smashing success with close to 500 attendees. Attendance was more than double what the first Behind the Badge event drew in 2019 when 200 people attended.  

Behind The Badge is a community engagement event that allows the UH community to meet and talk with the UH Police Department, local law enforcement agencies, and university departments supporting safety on campus. Read more about the return of Behind the Badge.

Employee Recognition - September 2022

Rida Tayyeb

Human Resources Adds Rida Tayyeb as Senior HR Business Partner

Rida Tayyeb has joined Human Resources as a Senior HR Business Partner supporting the Division of Administration and Finance. Rida has extensive experience in HR that includes employee relations, recruiting, reorganization, career development, data analysis, and metrics.

Rida has also worked with multiple levels of an organization and is eager to begin her journey at UH where she attained a bachelor's degree in Human Resources Development from the College of Technology.
Mike Oestereicher

Facilities/Construction Management Welcomes New Assistant VP

Mike Oestereicher has joined the UH Facilities/Construction Management department as the Assistant Vice President of Facilities Services. Oestereicher brings over 25 years of experience in facility operations and services, engineering, and contracting. 

As the new Assistant VP, Oestereicher has oversight over campus services, lab services, general maintenance, preventive maintenance, utility operations, and campus construction services. Learn more about Facilities/Construction Management’s new assistant VP.

Cougar Cudos

Cougar Cudos

Cougar Cudos goes to Fire and Life Safety and Campus Safety members Wendell McCloud, Ernest Johnson, Joshua Hahn, and Marcus Hicks for their work in getting the UH Law Center and the Fertitta College of Medicine their required certificates in time.

Additionally, Cougar Cudos goes out to Elicia Davis for keeping Accounting Services moving smoothly, Dawn Mopkins for engaging with students during Cougar First Impressions Day 2, and Mark Rosanes for providing top-notch customer service.

UHS Facilities Forum - August 2022

UH System Facilities leaders and business partners gathered to collaborate, network and gain knowledge at the 2022

UHS Facilities Forum 2022

UH System Facilities leaders and business partners gathered to collaborate, network and gain knowledge at the 2022 UHS Facilities Forum. This year’s theme was “Digging Deeper into Sustaining Our Evolving Environment.” The event was attended by members of staff at the University of Houston, University of Houston-Downtown, University of Houston-Victoria and University of Houston-Clear Lake. Read more about this year’s Facilities Forum.

Staff Council Awards - August 2022

For the first time in the University of Houston Staff Council history, the organization held an in-person Staff Council Awards ceremony to honor and recognize employee excellence at the University of Houston. Read more about the 2022 Staff Council Awards ceremony.

2022 Staff Council Awards Recap

For the first time in the University of Houston Staff Council history, the organization held an in-person Staff Council Awards ceremony to honor and recognize employee excellence at the University of Houston. Read more about the 2022 Staff Council Awards ceremony.

Employee Recognition - August 2022

Cougar Cudos

Cougar Cudos

Cougar Cudos goes to June Lawrence for her work with the Office of Real Estate Services and to Vivian LoDuca for her work with Human Resources.

To nominate a fellow Staff member and learn more about Cougar Cudos.

Employee Recognition - July 2022

Alexcis Mendoza

UH Dining’s Alexcis Mendoza Wins Chartwells President’s Circle Award

Congratulations to UH Dining and Chartwells District Marketing Manager Alexcis Mendoza on being awarded the Chartwells President’s Circle Award for her outstanding contributions to ‘Living the Brand.’

Mendoza started her career at Chartwells as a Marketing Intern in 2012 and worked her way up to District Marketing Manager through hard work and dedication. Read more about Mendoza and Chartwells President’s Circle Award

 Departmental Recognition - July 2022

HUB Award

Historically Underutilized Business Department wins Houston Business Journal Award

The University of Houston’s Historically Underutilized Business Operations Department recently got a jolt of good news when the Houston Business Journal announced the department had won the Diversity in Business Award.

HUB is the award recipient within the Outstanding Supplier Diversity category, recognizing companies that successfully seek to do business with minority suppliers. HOD Operations Director F. Linelle Clark, Ph.D., said the recognition means a tremendous amount because it signifies that the department is on the right track. Read more about HOD’s award from the Houston Business Journal.

 Employee Recognition - June 2022


Dr. Emily Messa Selected for Fulbright Specialist Roster

Dr. Emily Messa, University of Houston System Senior Associate Vice Chancellor and University of Houston Senior Associate Vice President for Administration has been recommended for the Fulbright Specialist Roster for a four-year term. As a member of the Fulbright Specialist Roster, Messa is eligible to be matched with projects designed by host institutions in over 150 countries globally. Read more about Dr. Messa's selection to the Fulbright Specialist Roster.

Professional Development & Events - June 2022

Auxiliary Services Re-Launches the Auxiliary Services Professional Symposium with a Focus on Creating Connections, Collaborations with Student Affairs


The University of Houston’s Auxiliary Services revived its Auxiliary Services Professional Symposium by hosting this year’s event on June 7th at the M.D. Anderson Library. The event was attended by colleagues from across the UH System. The focus of this year’s program was collaboration and connecting – highlighting the important role of auxiliary services in impacting the student experience and helping to make connections between auxiliary services professionals and student affairs programs and services.

Key note speaker University of Houston-Clear Lake President Dr. Richard Walker, who also previously served as Vice Chancellor and Vice President for the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services at the UH System and University of Houston, led a group discussion with attendees about lessons learned in supporting students during the pandemic. Participants discussed how student basic needs became more visible during the pandemic and the importance of flexibility in student learning and programming. Read more about the Symposium’s revival.

May 2022

  • F/CM Continues to Recognize Employee Contributions with Excellence Awards

    On May 24, F/CM hosted their annual department lunch. During this time together appreciation wasfacitites employee award given for the hard work accomplished through the fiscal year. The inaugural Strategic Teams were acknowledged for the projects they proposed in 2021. The 2022 Strategic Teams were also announced.

    The Building Futures, Maintaining Excellence Awards were given by Senior Associate Vice Chancellor/Associate Vice President David Oliver. There are four awards distributed in total including individual and team awards.

    The top nominated employee finalists were individually emailed to let them know they had been considered for the award. The finalist’s included Miguel Elizondo, Rudy Jimenez, Michelle Le, Nguyen Ngo, Richard Pace, Jai Ranganath, Jim Regan, Nabil Sanmiguel, Brad Schmidt, and Bill Wilkins.

April 2022

  • 2022 TAPPA Educational Conference

    tappa-confrence.jpgUniversity of Houston staff members from the Facilities/Construction Management department hosted the 2022 TAPPA Educational Conference and Business Partner Fair in Spring, Texas. TAPPA is a non-profit organization that promotes common interest, proficiency, and professionalism in college and university facilities operations. The organization’s annual conference allows attendees to get educated and informed on better managing the facilities department in their respective colleges and universities.  The 2022 TAPPA Conference was attended by 33 higher education institutions with close to 400 participants. And there was a sea of red across the conference as over 40 UH staff members attended — some for the first time. Read more about the TAPPA Conference here.
  • 2022 Diversity Institute Summit

    uhpd-summit-highlight.jpgTeam members from the University of Houston Police Department enhanced their skills this month by attending an on-campus training and leading an educational session at a regional safety summit. On April 1, UHPD attended the 2022 Diversity Institute, Good Trouble: Allyship in Action summit presented by the Center for Diversity and Inclusion in collaboration with the Center for Student Involvement and the Women & Gender Resource Center. The diversity summit is held annually with each year offering a different theme. The goal is to offer participants transformative sessions to enhance their cultural knowledge. 
  • Las Comadres College Mentoring Program

    LasComadres-1.jpgEsmeralda Valdez, Executive Director of University Services, participated with staff colleagues in the Las Comadres College Mentoring Program, by leading an educational session at the 2022 Diversity Institute’s Good Trouble: Ally Ship in Action conference to bring awareness to the University of Houston’s largest subpopulation of students – Latina undergraduates. The session, titled Uplifting Latina Undergraduates: The Significance of Mentorship Latina Student Success at a Hispanic Serving Institution, provided recommendations to faculty and staff on how they can support Latina students in balancing their intersectional identities and navigating the structures of higher education
  • Preparedness Response Innovation Mitigation Recovery (PRIMR) Conference

    ginger-walker.jpgGinger Walker, Director, Emergency Management with the Office of Emergency Management, presented to the Preparedness Response Innovation Mitigation Recovery (PRIMR) Conference at the University of North Texas on March 7th. The PRIMR Annual Conference focuses on catastrophic disaster preparedness. Catastrophic disasters leave a trail of destruction from staggering financial costs to widespread societal disruption and human suffering. In recent years, Texas has been impacted by a worldwide pandemic, a massive winter storm, hurricanes, floods, wildfires, droughts, induced earthquakes, offshore oil spills, and chemical explosions.
  • UH Police Chief visits TLIM Program in UH Sugar Land

    University of Houston Police Chief Ceaser Moore and Officer Markenna Pharr visited the Technology Leadership and Innovation Management program in Sugar Land to speak about leadership in law enforcement. Chief Moore and Officer Pharr shared with students the best practices and success strategies for their careers in the public or private sector.  



  • TPTA Parking Employee Award

    TPTA Parking Employee Award

    The Texas Parking and Transportation Association (TPTA) has named Parking and Transportation Services Assistant Director Allen DeForde as the winner of its 2022 Parking Employee Award of Excellence.
  • Campus Safety Magazine Recognizes Ginger Walker

    Campus Safety Magazine Recognizes Ginger Walker

    Ginger Walker is a finalist for Campus Safety Director of the year Award.