Advancement Enhancement Day. A day organized by employees for employees. And, for the first time this June, the centerpiece of a quarterly gathering. 

There is no better way to cap off a year and kick off our summer. 

As you requested, Advancement Enhancement Day 2022 focused on personal well-being and team building. We learned some skills and spent time with one another – either in-person or virtually – for an entire day focused exclusively on us. 

On behalf of the Advancement Leadership Team (ALT), I want to sincerely thank the Advancement Enhancement Day Planning Committee, and all of you, for making memorable moments to carry us through until our quarterly gathering in September. I hope we can all now move into the summer more confident in ourselves and in our team. 

ALT hopes summer is characterized by resting, relaxing, and recharging during vacation and, when not on vacation, advancing personal and professional priorities during this relatively quieter time. In that vein, this is the final edition of ALTogether Now until Sept. 12. QUIRC will be the primary communication tool for the Office of Advancement over the summer, and ALT looks forward to resuming weekly distribution of ALTogether Now in September. 

It was absolutely fantastic to engage with everyone last week. Until we gather again, on behalf of the ALT, I hope you all have a great summer!

Advancing your voice

We received the following question through the Advancing Your Voice web form:

(Form question) Please provide details related to your comments, questions, suggestions, concerns:

Historically, Queen's has been hierarchical. How is Advancement helping to break these barriers starting within our own department?

What is your desired outcome?

Under some circumstances, titles aren't a barrier to communication and collaboration.

If you have identified a concern please detail any solutions you have for improvement, resolution or to reach your desired outcome: 

ED's should be encouraged to build relationships within Advancement regardless of title and vice versa.


Queen’s, like virtually all public and private organizations in Canada and beyond, is based on a management structure that is hierarchical, with different responsibilities and decision-making authority at all levels. But having a hierarchical structure does not mean we can’t organize ourselves around our areas of expertise and areas of mutual interest to achieve our goals and ensure that everyone feels they are valued within the organization. Collaboration and communication are the key to doing that.
To that end, ALT has spent considerable time over the past several years trying to increase the opportunities for people all over Advancement to work more closely together to achieve our shared mission to foster relationships that advance Queen’s and contribute to a better world. To that end, we have attempted to foster cross-functional collaboration across Advancement – this year’s planning process is just one example. The Driving Development project is another.
We have also made efforts to increase the amount of two-way communication within Advancement by encouraging feedback, conducting regular surveys, and creating tools to help our colleagues throughout the organization to be heard. The website used to submit this question – Advancing Your Voice – is a perfect example. 
The days when leadership – even within a hierarchical organization like Queen’s – believes that they have all the answers or all the insights are long gone. We recognize that, while some decisions need to be made at the leadership level, we would be foolish to make them without the input of everyone with the expertise or interest to contribute. We can’t eliminate the hierarchical structure that governs the work of this university, but we can certainly – all of us – work together to ensure that structure does not become a barrier to doing the best work we can by working together with mutual respect regardless of the titles we hold.

Get prepared for award season

It is natural to turn our attention to the summer at this time of year. Personal vacation plans are top of mind when we look ahead in June, but I also expect we are all thinking about the work we want to complete or projects we hope to move forward before the rush of the fall is upon us. I would like to recommend award nominations also be considered for the to-do list this summer.

Wait. What?

It is true that many award nomination windows have closed for 2022 or will not open for several months. It would therefore be entirely fair to defer this activity, but allow me to present an alternative perspective.

The summer is a quieter time for most of us. More work is completed independently as colleagues take vacations and there are fewer deadlines overall. These are ideal conditions to complete preparatory work on award nomination packages. After all, how many times have we read a call for nominations and deleted the message because we had no bandwidth to consider candidates? Perhaps we have deferred a candidate we would love to nominate to “another year” because there just wasn’t time to prepare a winnable nomination package. 

The summer may be our best time to pull nomination materials together – when we have the time to consider candidates and the time to devote to preparing nominations. And there are great people who deserve to be recognized in all our networks. 

We don’t have to boil the ocean. Considering just Queen’s alumni/advancement award nominations this summer would make a great impact on our ability to recognize the contributions of university alumni and colleagues across campus. 

Here are some awards to consider:

  • Queen’s University Council – one of three governing bodies of Queen’s composed entirely of alumni – offers Distinguished Service Awards for students, current or retired staff, faculty or alumni who have served Queen’s. 
  • Queen’s University Alumni Association has Awards and Fellowships for alumni or members of the Queen’s community who have made exceptional contributions to community – locally or globally – or Queen’s. 
  • The Flynn Award is offered by the Office of Advancement for campus partners who contributed to university advancement activities.
  • Finally, the Heney Award is presented to an outstanding Advancement employee annually (read on to learn more about how to nominate a colleague for a Heney Award).

Taking time to rest, relax, and recharge is definitely a priority for the summer. There may also be no better time to think about award nominations for individuals who deserve public recognition. 

Nominate a colleague for Heney Award

As mentioned during Advancement Enhancement Day and in Karen’s note, nominations for the Heney Award are open through the online nomination form. We have simplified the form this year and decreased the number of questions to make it that much easier for you to nominate your colleagues!

The Heney Award is presented in honour of John J. Heney, former director of Development and recipient of the Queen’s Distinguished Service Award. Each year, it is presented to the Advancement employee who best exemplifies the characteristics of commitment to the advancement profession, superb performance, and devotion to the organization, and the mission, vision and values of Advancement. View past award recipients. Any staff member in the Office of Advancement may submit a nomination.

Who can be nominated:

  • All staff members of the Office of Advancement, including continuing and term employees are eligible to be nominated.
  • In keeping with the original intent and spirit of the fund, the award is to recognize one individual and not a unit, group, or team.
  • Previous award winners may be nominated and receive the award more than once, at the discretion of The John J. Heney Award Selection Committee.
  • If the individual in a previous year was not selected, they can be re-nominated.

Award criteria:

  • Nominations are based on the employee’s previous 12- to 18-month work period and demonstrate concrete examples to support the application criteria.
  • The nominator must address the rationale for the nomination, based on any of the following criteria.
    • Commitment to the advancement profession, professionalism, and compassion.
    • Superb performance in achieving the strategic objectives of the Office of Advancement that embodies the Advancement mission and any of the university’s 12 competencies.
    • Devotion to the organization and/or the broader university.
  • The nominator must include how the employee has demonstrated initiative above and beyond the regular call of duty in their work.

Nominations are accepted year-round, but must be submitted no later than 11:59 pm on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. Late applications will not be accepted.

We all know the fall is incredibly busy here in Advancement, so what are you waiting for? Nominate your colleague today! 

If you have any questions, please contact Carla Ferreira Rodrigues

It’s almost over! RIM Awareness Month week four activity

By Cheyenne Litt, Data Stewardship Specialist

It’s the last week of Records and Information Management (RIM) Awareness Month! Thank you to all who have participated so far. Even though the celebrations are almost done, records and information management are important throughout the year. As you reflect on the last activity, think of ways you can continue to follow RIM best practices in your work.

For the final week of this event, we want you to take a moment to reflect on your own records management practices. Please share what records management/data governance means to you.

Submit your answer by end of day Friday, June 24, and you’ll earn an entry into the draw for a first-place prize of a $50 Wharf and Feather gift card and a second-place prize of a $10 Tim Hortons gift card (for Office of Advancement employees only). Winners will be announced in ALTogether Now and on QUIRC the week of July 5.

Remember, you receive an entry for each activity you participate in and will get a bonus entry if you complete all four of the weekly activities. And yes, we will accept submissions for all of the previous’ weeks activities until end of day on Friday, June 24 if you missed them. Here are the links to each activity:

Week 1 – Records Management At Home
Week 2 – DG101 Quiz
Week 3 – Wordle
Week 4 – What does Records Management/Data Governance mean to you?

Employee spotlight

The Employee Spotlight celebrates the arrival of our new and existing staff by profiling responses they share through a fun and informal survey that will help us get to know them better. Be sure to review these profiles and use these fun facts and tidbits to find commonalities, embrace differences, and spark a conversation. 

A few weeks ago, we welcomed one new member to Advancement:

Lindsey Kull in the position of Alumni Officer, Volunteer Liaison. Learn more about Lindsey and what her favourite family tradition is.

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