Physics Phenom

magnolia blossoms against the wall of Jefferson Lab
This program was designed by a staff committee, in consultation with the faculty and administration, to recognize employee achievement and reward work and behaviors that support the mission, goals, values, and initiatives of the Department of Physics. The Department seeks to celebrate meaningful and special contributions "above and beyond" standard job responsibilities by bestowing the moniker Physics Phenom on persons who demonstrate concrete achievement and contributions to the department in areas that may include: collegiality, innovation, mentorship, professionalism, special projects, and teamwork. Awardees will be announced at the Physics Staff Appreciation ceremony, held in the summer months.


Nominate a Physics Phenom! Now accepting nominations through Friday June 11, 2021.

Previous Winners

  • 2020: Dionne Clarke, Samantha Dakoulas and Benita Wolff
  • 2019: Lisa Cacciabaudo
  • 2018: Hannah Belcher and Marina Werbeloff
  • 2016: Adam Ackerman
  • 2015: Carol Davis
  • 2014: Barbara Drauschke and Nils Sorensen
  • 2013: Bonnie Currier

More information:

Who is eligible to receive the Physics Phenom award?
All Physics department staff.

Who can nominate an awardee?
     Physics department faculty, staff, students, and scholars of every level.

When can you nominate an awardee?
      Whenever you witness the staff member’s excellence and specifically when the Chair and the Director of Administration makes a call for nominations. This seasons dates: 05/24/2021 - 06/11/2021

Where can nominate an awardee?
    When the nomination cycle is open you may nominate here:

How do you nominate someone?
     Throughout the year when any member of the department witnesses a staff going above and beyond their standard job responsibilities in the areas of collegiality, innovation, mentorship, professionalism, special projects, and teamwork, they are encouraged to nominate them to receive the Physics Phenom award:

  • Select their name from the drop-down list on the Award web page.
  • Write up to 250 words describing this staff member’s achievement and accomplishments.
  • Optional: Forward your nomination to that staff person’s faculty and/or administrative manager so that regardless of whether they win the award, their great work is recognized in a timely fashion.

How is the Physics Phenom awardee determined?
     Award recipients are determined by majority vote cast by faculty and staff, with consultation from the Chair and Director – no students at any level or research scholars will be allowed to cast a ballot in this vote.

How does the voting for the Physics Phenom take place?
     The nomination period will close for a two week window when all members of the department who are eligible to vote (described above) will be sent an email with a link to a Qualtrics survey, where they will be able to review all the nominees and the full text of the nominator’s explanation for why this person should receive the Physics Phenom award, and invited to log on to the Staff iSite to cast their ballot. Only the Department Chair and Director of Administration will be notified of the one individual who received the most votes during each annual voting period. Two way (or more) ties will be decided at the discretion of the Chair and Director. Excerpts from the nominations will be sited during the award presentation Ceremony.

The Award:
     The Physics Phenom will receive:

  • a cash prize in the amount of $100;
  • a commemorative citation that will be presented by the Director of Administration and Department Chair;
  • a copy will be posted on the Staff bulletin board, located near the Department Administration main office. 

Restrictions and Parameters:
The moniker of Physics Phenom is awarded for the period of time from July to June. Past Physics Phenoms are not eligible to receive the award two consecutive award cycles in a row.