1999 - Estellita Hal
just a working stiff, Estellita Hall never paid any mind to the Amy
J. Blue Awards.
"I always thought that they were for somebody
who has contributed a lot to Stanford, not someone at my level,"
Many of her colleagues thought otherwise and enthusiastically
nominated Hall, a client services assistant in the training and organizational
development department within human resources, for the annual award.
And now she is among the trio of winners for the
coveted staff honor. From now on she might take a second look at the
nomination form that has crossed her desk for the past nine years only
to be shuffled around awhile before ending up in the recycling bin.
If you've experienced the staff rituals of new
employee orientation and the reimbursement process of the Staff Training
Assistance Program (STAP), then your path may have been paved by Hall.
Colleagues say she makes the going easier for those frustrated by the
bureaucracy who are lucky enough to encounter her.
Hall's duties include course registration, classroom
setup, production of materials, catering arrangements, processing STAP
payments and planning the annual Halloween party.
"In terms of her commitment to people, Esti
is routinely viewed by others as someone who is highly approachable,
who will do whatever she can to help out in a situation, and who has
so much knowledge about working at Stanford that she is frequently tapped
for her wisdom," Valerie Beeman, online learning specialist, wrote
in her nomination.
Hall, 35, a statuesque woman with a ready laugh
who is given to dramatic hand gestures, loves to help out.
"In dealing with STAP, I'm just giving out
information," she points out. "If I make someone happy, then
it makes me happy."
Hall's upbeat attitude is something to marvel
about, considering that after the San Francisco resident leaves the
campus at 4 p.m. each weekday, she heads for her second job, as a client
services assistant at the Opportunities Industrialization Center West
in Menlo Park.
But first, Hall, a single mother, makes a stop
to pick up her soon-to-be 3-year-old son, Owens, who will stay with
her through her shift ending at 8:30 p.m. -- and the weekend shifts
every other week. "You know, life is a routine," Hall notes
with no trace of bitterness when referring to her schedule. "It's
just become a part of my life."
She's been at the Menlo Park center for 12 years,
and has been a permanent member of the Stanford staff since 1984. For
two years before that, she worked on campus as a Youth Opportunity Program
Hall, a native of Jamaica who moved to East Palo
Alto with her family when she was 13, is hoping to lighten her commute
by locating a new place to live that is closer to her work sites.
She'd like to use her cash award prize
for moving expenses.