Commission on the Status of Women

CSW Outstanding Achievement and Contribution Awards

2014 Award Recipients

Jennifer Kampp, Assistant to the VP, Office of Public Affairs
Like many working parents, after the birth of her first child Jenny Kampp returned back to work only to feel like a “fish out of water” and wondered if other parents were facing the same challenges.  After reading an article about the importance for parents to have a support network, Jenny approached the ASU Employee Assistance Office about starting a group for working parents.  They agreed to help sponsor the idea and with that the ASU Working Parents Network was created, and Jenny took on the role as coordinator, completely on her own time.  Jenny worked to assess the needs of the group, helped to develop a webpage, established a walking group, and coordinated a variety of important monthly programming for the group.  The impact of Jenny’s creation and work on the WPN is immeasurable.  As one of her nominators remarked, “I know that the Working Parent’s Network and all of Jenny’s efforts are a big factor in my continuing to work at ASU. Without the support of the group I may have been tempted to consider staying at home full time because being away from my baby was such an adjustment. I was able to connect with other parents and other mothers in particular who told me that I could do it and who could show by example. I feel confident that this has been the experience of other working mothers who attend Working Parent Network lunches. Jenny’s efforts have therefore benefitted me, my career and family because I am continuing to work, and the university because I continue to contribute to the university enterprise.”

Lauren Sandground, Undergraduate Student, Justice Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
From a very young age, Lauren Sandground dedicated countless hours to volunteering for causes to benefit women and other underrepresented groups.  Among the long list of initiatives that she has worked on include: collecting and delivering food to those in need, working with the International Rescue program “Bead to Succeed” where refugee women made and sold jewelry to support their families, working with the “Dress a Girl” program where students sewed garments for girls in Africa, working as an intern advocate for Office of Victim’s Services.  Most recently, Lauren served as the Outreach Coordinator for the “Take the Lead” event and as President of the Woman as Hero student organization.  Under her leadership, WAH hosted an annual Womanity Conference which empowers women to be involved community service, fundraising, entrepreneurship, among many other topics. 

Laura Mendoza, Administrative Assistant, University Libraries
Laura Mendoza is not only a tireless advocate for victims of domestic violence, but she directly provides support to women, providing them with the resources and encouragement to realize their dreams of earning a college education.  Despite a full plate of duties as an employee at ASU, and a graduate student in social work/non-profit management, Laura dedicates countless hours to organizations such as the National Advocacy and Training Network and SEEDS, a group that works to address the unmet needs of battered women in recover, including women veterans and women coming out of jail.  It is not just her volunteer work that distinguishes her, but her determined efforts to help abused women earn their college degree.  She provides direct encouragement, fills out admissions applications and financial aid forms, often paying application fees herself.  And when these women graduate from ASU, Laura pays for their caps and gowns as well. 

Cathy Kerrey, Director of Academic Advising, New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences
Cathy Kerrey is a staff person who doesn’t like the spotlight, yet is the one who will ensure that the light is bright enough for all others.  She dedicates countless hours of her own time to programs and initiatives that promote diversity and support the success of women and other underrepresented groups, including extensive work on a collaborative program with a Native American tribe to provide an opportunity for Native American students to earn a college degree.  But when you ask people what makes Cathy special, they will often note about how her daily support, mentorship, and encouragement have helped them to get through even the toughest of times.  When she asks someone “how are you?” she genuinely wants to know, and she will listen, and she will provide the guidance and support needed to make things better.  In the words of one of her nominators, “Cathy is an individual passionate about helping others.  Not only has she made it a point to check in with me as often as she can, but she always provides the best guidance – even when she’s drowning in work. She has guided me through some of the roughest times I have yet to encounter, not because it’s her job, but because she innately wants to bring out the best in others.”

Dominique Roe-Sepowitz, Associate Professor, School of Social Work, College of Public Programs
The impact of Dr. Dominique Roe-Sepowitz can be felt in her outstanding work in the community on behalf of some of the most marginalized groups, including those that many turn away from.  Dr. Roe-Sepowitz pioneered a collaborative community project that involves over 14 local community agencies and has helped to provide services to over 300 adults arrested for prostitution. She recently received grants to help women in poverty provide for their children and to create a peer mentoring program to help survivors of sexual exploitation.  She has organized clothing drives and sought creative solutions to support new residents in halfway house that provides recovery opportunities for women and transgendered individuals.  In the words of her nominator, “Dr. Roe-Sepowitz is constantly finding new ways to meet the needs of vulnerable and oppressed individuals in the community.  She does this because she believes in this work and in social justice.”

Jacquelyn Scott Lynch, Principal Lecturer and Honors Faculty Fellow, Barrett The Honors College
Over the past decade, at the Barrett Honors College, Jacquelyn Scott Lynch has worked to support and other underrepresented groups in three profound ways including: expanding the honors curriculum to include underrepresented voices, encouraging faculty to integrate a commitment to diversity in their syllabi and classroom, and providing direct support for Barrett faculty women, LGBT faculty and faculty of color.  Perhaps one of her greatest contributions to Barrett and the University was with her creation of the Barrett Faculty Mentoring Program for Teaching Excellence.  The program provides resources and support, including classroom visits, individual mentoring, and monthly discussions.  In addition to this program that benefits all faculty at Barrett, Dr. Scott has also created a women’s mentoring group for women faculty at Barrett.  The group provides a space for faculty to discuss important gender-related issues experienced in the classroom.  In the words of her nominator, “I cannot temper my support for Dr. Scott because I have encountered no other person at ASU who has done more to tangibly support women and underrepresented faculty and students at ASU.  Her efforts and inexhaustible commitment to improving our University have created lasting changes in the Honors College’s culture of diversity.”

Carol Comito, Academic Success Specialist, Hugh Downs School of Communication
Carol Comito is an individual dedicated to advocacy not only at ASU, but beyond as well.  For several years, Carol has volunteered her time as Chair of the ASU Staff Council and Director of Membership for University Career Women, working to increase the visibility of issues related to staff.  But her contributions don’t end there.  Outside of the university, in 2010, Carol founded the Arizona Women’s Conference, an annual event which provides a forum to discuss leadership, networking and professional career advancement for women.  Additionally, through her work with the Starbright Foundation, Carol endeavors to eradicate human sex trafficking through educational programs in Arizona communities.

Jordan Hibbs, Undergraduate Student, Psychology, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Through her numerous volunteer activities, Jordan Hibbs demonstrates her deep commitment to diversity and supporting of underrepresented groups.  Through her work at the Undergraduate Student Government, Jordan helped to launch the Barrett Association of Transfer Students which recognizes and supports the needs of a transfer or a non-traditional honors college student.  In addition to this important program, Jordan has also helped draft a USG Senate Bill to formally oppose SB1062, served on the African American Heritage Month Planning Committee, recruited direct participation of women and minorities in USG campaigns, and promoted volunteerism amongst the ASU community.

Graduate Women’s Association
For many years, the ASU Graduate Women’s Association remained a dormant and inactive organization at ASU, until a group of graduate students from the ASU’s English department including Alaya Swann, Kalissa Hendrickson, Meghan Nestel and Lakshami Mahajan, worked to re-establish the organization into a thriving resource for graduate students across ASU.  This was no easy task, but rather a monumental project that required negotiation, planning for the future, development of programming, and a comprehensive plan to engage graduate students across all colleges at ASU.  And they did just that.  The organization now provides a variety of workshops, co-sponsorship of important university events impacting women and other underrepresented groups, and valuable website that provides information and resources to graduate students across ASU.