Patrick Miller Is August Employee of the Month

Posted: August 1, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Nick Walker

Patrick Miller
Patrick Miller with his award
Creative Services photo

Calm, soft-spoken and mild-mannered, Patrick R. Miller remains modest even as he is named the Employee of the Month for August.

“I just never expected this,” says Miller, a compliance manager in the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). “It’s kind of embarrassing, actually. I’m usually quiet and shy, and this is a little too much attention. But I do appreciate this very much.”

Because of a recent staff shortage, Miller’s duties have also included working as the senior grants accountant and team leader to the post-award program, as well as training new members.

“I was a person of many hats here for a little while,” Miller says. “We would work to set up awards and grants from start to finish, help people with their budgets, keep track of expenses, monitor projects and research and answer any questions people may have.”

Beth Rooney, office manager for the Center for the Advancement of Public Health (CAPH), concurs.

“When I began at CAPH last summer, the center had been without an office manager for a few months,” Rooney says. “I quickly came to appreciate the steps Patrick had taken to ensure our funding issues received attention during our staffing shortage.”

Miller also provides training services to others in the department, says Eileen Gallagher, a contracts manager with OSP.

“I recently had the benefit of attending a training session that he delivered to department administrators,” Gallagher says. “I was impressed by his knowledge and understanding of the subject area and his ability to convey it to a large group.

“I have watched as Mr. Miller has mentored his fellow grants accountants and provided ideas and insights to his supervisors,” Gallagher continues. “In fact, it is not uncommon to see his supervisors seeking his guidance on post-award issues.”

Others in OSP share Gallagher’s sentiments.

“Patrick continually takes on more complex projects and greater responsibility without missing a beat,” says Susan Grossman, another team leader in OSP. “He does it all with quiet courtesy and professionalism.”

Beth Ives, assistant director of post award in OSP, says, “I have come to rely heavily on Patrick. He always remains calm, often under difficult and stressful situations.”

Miller joined Mason four years ago, working in Accounts Payable before transferring to OSP in 2005. He holds an associate degree in business administration from Northern Virginia Community College, and he plans to take classes at Mason in the fall.

“Hopefully, it won’t be a full load of classes,” Miller says. “I’ll probably just go with accounting and take that route. I want to stay at Mason for a while. I really like the environment, the people I work with and the university setting. I’d rather not work at any accounting firms for now – 90 hours a week is too much for me.”

A 90-hour workweek would leave little time for Miller’s other activities.

“I like to go to the movies a lot. I also like going to the beach. It’s fun to travel and go to new places. My girlfriend and I are also planning on taking a trip to Europe,” Miller says.

Though reluctant to praise his own work, Miller is grateful to those who nominated him for Employee of the Month.

“You know, I didn’t think I was going to get this,” Miller says. “It’s a really big honor, and I really appreciate it.”

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