Two staff members from the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVMBS) were recognized for their commendable service to the university with 2022 President’s Meritorious Service Awards.
Elizabeth Hinton, the large animal surgical and sports medicine coordinator for the Texas A&M Large Animal Teaching Hospital (LATH), and Mandy Zachgo, a veterinary technician in the CVMBS’ Department of Veterinary Physiology & Pharmacology (VTPP), are two of 25 staff members from across the university to receive this honor.
“Recipients of this highly prestigious award have demonstrated their commitment to the Aggie core values of excellence, integrity, leadership, loyalty, respect, and selfless service,” said Texas A&M University President M. Katherine Banks. “To each of them, I extend my most sincere congratulations and deep appreciation for their efforts that make Texas A&M University such a great institution.”
Hinton and Zachgo will be recognized at an awards ceremony on April 25 in the Memorial Student Center’s Bethancourt Ballroom. They will each receive a $1,000 award, commemorative plaque, and lapel pin.
Hinton is known around the LATH for her willingness to help colleagues and patients whenever she can.
“She puts the needs of the patients, the hospital, and her teams above all else,” one nominator said. “She will oftentimes be here late or early to support the hospital. She is even available to her team when she is not here, if anything as encouragement for their efforts.”
As a supervisor, Hinton prioritizes her team’s wellbeing and strives to make each member feel valued and respected.
“Elizabeth treats every single person with respect every single day,” another nominator said. “She cultivates a culture where ideas and opinions are shared and given the respectful consideration they deserve. She has developed a mutual respect with not only her team but with other staff, faculty, and students in the hospital.”
In response to staffing challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, Hinton established a leadership training program to mentor fellow staff members and teach them leadership skills like conflict management.
“This program has been so effective in the hospital that we are working to provide it for all supervisors,” another nominator said. “She did this independently because she saw a local need; she works tirelessly without any sense of entitlement.”
Hinton was also recognized with the CVMBS’ Pearl Enfield Staff Leadership Award in 2019.
Zachgo has gone above and beyond her job expectations multiple times when she saw a need that she could fill.
“[When] the person who coordinates all testing and exams for our department retired immediately prior to the beginning of Fall 2021 semester, Mandy stepped in and took over this person’s responsibilities while continuing to perform her own duties,” one nominator said. “With excellence as her goal, Mandy worked extra hours to provide the same quality of service that the faculty were used to under the previous coordinator.”
Zachgo plays a key role in the CVMBS’ Aggie ACHIEVE course for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), even going so far as to volunteer with the Courtney Cares hippotherapy program to encourage an Aggie ACHIEVE student to participate.
“Mandy is consistently kind and compassionate to all students,” another nominator said. “She respects them as unique individuals and goes out of her way to make all students feel welcome.”
As leader of the CVMBS’ Teaching Laboratory Support team, Zachgo works beyond normal expectations to prepare lab spaces for students and enhance their learning experiences.
“Mandy is the true epitome of the Aggie core values,” another nominator said. “The success of our classes and labs are a direct result of her preparation and the energy she has for our faculty and students.”
Contact Information: Jennifer Gauntt, Director of CVMBS Communications, Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences; firstname.lastname@example.org; 979-862-4216