From Kevin’s Desk: Ridiculously Awesome (8/2/19)

Dear Colleagues:

Happy Friday!

Last week, the Shared Services Center (SSC) celebrated its five-year anniversary. The SSC held a wonderful celebration at the Big House to thank their current and former staff and celebrate five ridiculously awesome years…and it was truly awesome! SSC staff, customers and family members were treated to face painting, photo booth pictures, free swag, and some fantastic ice cream treats. To get a peek at the fun, check out the photo gallery on our B&F website.

Since its inception, the SSC has saved the university millions of dollars and hundreds of working hours. In just five years our SSC colleagues have taken more phone calls than the current number of living U-M alumni, saved enough time to have earned 836 undergraduate degrees and handled enough funds to purchase 722,863 flights around the world — amazing! During the celebration, SSC executive director Pam Gabel gifted a piggy bank to Provost Martin Philbert, which symbolized the SSC’s promise to continue to Make Blue Go even better by saving the university time and money. Please join me in congratulating our SSC colleagues on five incredibly awesome years – YA’LL ROCK!!

In addition last week, we officially welcomed our new AVP for finance, Brian Smith, at an ice cream social. And August 1 marked the first day for our new AVP for human resources, Rich Holcomb. Both of these leaders are dedicated to our work to create a positive and inclusive organization, and I could not be more thrilled to have them step into these critical roles. I also want to thank our own Laurita Thomas who will serve as my special counsel until the end of December. Laurita has served this university with distinction for more than 47 years. We will host a number of celebrations to thank Laurita in September, so stay tuned!

On Saturday I am headed out for my annual two-week vacation with my family. In keeping with my commitment to fully disconnect and recharge, I will be off of email (in submarine mode, as I like to call it!) until I return. I encourage all of you to try it…you’ll like it, I guarantee! You will hear from me again when I am back in town. Until then, I hope you enjoy these last few weeks of summer. It’s a wonderful time to stop, smell the roses and be thankful for all the wonderful things in our lives.   

With much appreciation and gratitude,



P.S., Please post for staff who don’t have regular access to email