TROY-Sandi Gouge, associate vice chancellor for marketing and communication at Troy University, has won the University’s Vergil Parks McKinley Award for November.
Gouge, who has been a member of the TROY staff since 1986, received the award Tuesday during a ceremony at the Hawkins-Adams-Long Hall of Honor on the Troy Campus. Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr., TROY chancellor, presented the award to Gouge, who was nominated by Dr. Cameron Martindale, senior vice chancellor for advancement and external relations.
The McKinley Award is the highest honor that Troy University gives to a non-faculty staff member. It is presented monthly to an employee who has demonstrated outstanding attitude, innovation and work ethic. The award was established by former Texaco CEO John McKinley in honor of his father, Vergil Parks McKinley, who was a Troy University professor during the early 20th century and was key to the development of the University’s athletic program. Winners of this award receive an engraved clock and a $350 stipend.
In a letter of nomination, Dr. Martindale praised Gouge for her dedication and desire for excellence.
“It has been my pleasure to work closely with Sandi for the last 22 years at Troy University, and I have felt so privileged to work beside such an ‘encourager’,” Dr. Martindale said. “She approaches every assignment with total dedication and completes each task with excellence. There is no such phrase as ‘it can’t be done’ in her vocabulary and her word is truly her badge.”
Dr. Martindale characterized Gouge as a team player who is “diligent in her work and compassionate in her relationships.”
“She is willing to help any student or employee of any division with any situation, day or night, or on weekends,” Dr. Martindale said. “No job is too tough for her to tackle, and she approaches her work with all her heart and her full attention to detail. Sandi has been a trustworthy mentor to many students and all would agree she exemplifies the true ‘Trojan Spirit’ and is truly deserving of this high honor. We are fortunate to have her as a part of our family at TROY.”
Gouge, who holds a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a master’s degree in adult education from TROY, has previously served the University at its Montgomery Campus as executive assistant to the president, chief advancement officer and dean of student affairs and adjunct instructor. She said she was humbled to receive the McKinley Award.
“I have had some wonderful mentors in Dr. Martindale and Chancellor Hawkins,” Gouge said. “I have been associated with Troy University for about 40 years, as a student and an employee. I love this University, and it is a real honor to receive this award.”
Gouge makes her home in Troy with her husband, Fred.