Director of Classroom Support Steve Clark has been called a one-of-a-kind thinker and an innovator in his job at UNC Charlotte. He can add recipient of the Governor’s Award for Excellence to his resume.
Clark was among the educators, wildlife officers, law enforcement officials and other state workers honored Tuesday, Nov. 19, during a special luncheon at the Museum of History in Raleigh. The Governor’s Award for Excellence is the highest honor bestowed a state employee. Thomas Stith, chief of staff for Gov. Pat McCrory, and Gary Stinnett, UNC Charlotte associate vice chancellor for human resources, presented the award. The late Julius Chambers also was recognized with the Spirit of North Carolina Award.
According to nomination letters, Clark has “demonstrated outstanding commitment to providing efficient and innovative technology solutions in UNC Charlotte’s classrooms. His technological and operational innovations resulted in tremendous cost savings for the University, decreased response time and improved access to education and safety in classrooms on campus."
A 17-year UNC Charlotte veteran employee, Clark became interim director of classroom support in April 2005. Under his leadership, a standard technology package that was affordable, supportable and scalable was developed. He designed and built the first smart podium in his garage in a week and created a plan for its mass production and long-term support.
Today, all smart classrooms utilize Clark’s podium design that has a touch panel control system, a DVD/VCR combo player, document camera and personal computer linked to a projector and retractable screen. Two-way communication between the podiums and classroom support, added after the first year, improved efficiency technician response time. It also has become part of the campus’ emergency preparedness efforts as faculty members can receive help quickly and alerts can be delivered to all equipped classrooms.
“Steve has established himself as a one-of-a-kind thinker and innovator,” wrote one nominator, who also lauded Clark for remaining dedicated to being a responsible steward of public funding through thoughtful application of new technologies and innovative operating strategies.
Clark received the award in the category of efficiency and innovation. Awards also are presented for customer service, human relations, outstanding state government service, public service, safety and heroism and Spirit of North Carolina.