2018 Employee Service Awards — The Honorees

By Yavonda Chase

Click here for details about this year’s awards receptions.

Click here for the full list of employees who are being honored at this year’s awards.

50 Years

Robert BurnsRobert Burns, Ph.D., started his career at UAMS in July 1, 1968, as the first faculty hire made by John Pauly, Ph.D., then the new chair of the Department of Anatomy in the College of Medicine. Now, Burns is a professor of Anatomy and Interdisciplinary Toxicology in the Department of Neurobiology & Developmental Sciences.

In addition to his research in experimental oncology, cell kinetics, chronochemotherapy, Burns directs the highly successful UAMS Partners in Health Sciences (PIHS) program, a statewide PreK-14 educational outreach program in health sciences. He was given this task in 1991 by then-College of Medicine Dean I. Dodd Wilson, M.D., and has continued to lead the effort ever since.

Burns enjoys spending time outdoors, specifically fishing, hunting and taking photographs.

45 Years

Robert ArringtonRobert Arrington, M.D., started his career with UAMS in 1973 in the College of Medicine’s Department of Pediatrics as a professor. He is still serving in that role in the Neonatology Section of the Pediatrics Department.


TK ShortT.K. Short started her career with UAMS in 1973 as a clerk. In 2009, she became an administrative analyst with MCPG Payment Processing and remains in that role today.


40 Years

Rebecca BryantRebecca Bryant is the student clerkship coordinator in the College of Medicine’s Surgery Resident Education program. She started at UAMS after her sister — a nursing student who was offered a job in Pediatrics (then located on the sixth floor of the Central Building) — told her about the open position. Bryant says one of the great things about UAMS is she’s had the opportunity to work with people from all over the world. She enjoys reading and attending her husband’s concerts.


Nancy ClarkNancy Clark, the assistant director for Library operations, joined UAMS in November 1978 as a secretary in the Library. In her perfect world, she envisions a Library that has everything the students, staff and faculty need to learn and provide the best care for our patients. She enjoys spending time with her family, knitting, reading, singing in the church choir and traveling.


Patricia CrittendenPatricia Crittenden is the financial manager in the Division of Laboratory Animal Medicine. She began her career at UAMS in 1974 as the administrative assistant to Darrell Walters, the then-chief fiscal officer who later became the first vice chancellor for finance. She left UAMS for three years but came back when a position opened up, because UAMS was home. She has worked in several areas at UAMS, including campus administration, the College of Medicine and now, research.


Artie DutcherArtie Dutcher, B.S.R.T., a senior diagnostic radiology technologist, was hired at UAMS in April 1978. He also attended school at UAMS in the then-College of Health Related Professions. Dutcher says one of the keys to remaining in the same profession for 40 years is knowing you are a respected member of the medical team. He also strives to be the best patient advocate he can be, remembering that oftentimes the day one comes to the hospital is usually not their best day, and it is up to him to make them as comfortable as possible.


Dianne FallsDianne Falls started with UAMS in 1978 as a ward coordinator. In 2001, she became a patient services coordinator, otherwise known as an RN II. She now works in the main operating room in that same capacity.


Edgar Garcia-RillEdgar Garcia-Rill, Ph.D., a professor of anatomy and psychiatry in the College of Medicine’s Neurobiology & Developmental Sciences Department, was at the University of Central Arkansas when he was offered positions in Chicago, Boston and at UAMS. He chose UAMS (“best decision I ever made”) and started in September 1978. He is very proud to have played a role in the establishment of the Center for Translational Neuroscience, which has helped bring in more than $130 million in awards to UAMS over the past 15 years. He enjoys writing and is working on a trilogy of historical novels.


Suzanne LeslieSuzanne Leslie began in January 1978 as a secretary for the director of procurement. Forty years later, she holds that title — a feat she finds pretty surprising. Through the years, she has held a variety of roles in the department and can remember purchasing the first MRIs and tabulating the bid costs for the furniture going into the “new” Education II Building. She says, “I just enjoy every minute of serving this campus and our patients. UAMS is not just where “Medicine Lives,” it’s where I live, hope to continue to serve and to see a 45-year milestone!”


Abdul MuhammadAbdul K. Muhammad started with UAMS in 1978 as a patient care technician and now serves in that role in Medical Neuro ICU.


Faith ReevesFaith Reeves, a senior finance manager, started at UAMS in September 1978 in the treasurer’s office as the rent clerk for student housing at a time when the monthly rent charges and payments for the dorm were posted to individual ledger cards on a large and very loud NCTR bookkeeping machine. She is proud of her role in creating the Click and Claim program, which is a process to handle patient-related electronic payments to UAMS. She and her husband love to travel and have purchased an RV they plan on putting to good use.


Claudia ReynoldsClaudia Reynolds began her career with UAMS in 1978 in the operating room as a head nurse. In 2002, she became an RN and now works in the main operating room.


Cheryl RoyCheryl Roy, a patient services coordinator in the Interventional ACC Surgery Center, said she basically grew up at UAMS — both of her parents retired from UAMS. At the age of 12, she became a candy striper and volunteered in many areas around the hospital until she was hired as a secretary in the operating room in July 1978. In exchange for filing services, a coworker taught her how to use a computer. Now, she says, she’s the one coworkers come to for help solving their computer issues. She loves spending time with her grandchildren and scrapbooking.


Annette SawyerAnnette Sawyer is a medical billing specialist for the Medical College Physicians Group (MCPG). She was hired in June 1978 after a neighbor who worked for MCPG told her they were hiring. She says she never believed she would still be here after 40 years, but she is proud to work at UAMS. She enjoys watching movies, listening to music and traveling.


Mary ScottMary Scott, R.N., works in the NICU. She attended school in the UAMS College of Health Related Professions School of Medical Technology. She was hired in the hospital laboratory in 1978 and moved to the NICU lab two years later. During her time at UAMS, she went to nursing school to become a registered nurse. She loves spending time with her grandchildren, sewing and refinishing furniture.


John StidhamJohn Stidham, a facilities manager in Parking Operations, started at UAMS in July 1978 in the UAMS Police Department. During his time at UAMS, he earned his Senior Certificate in Law Enforcement from the State Law Enforcement Academy and his bachelor’s degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He tries to help everyone, regardless of the circumstances, and treat everyone with respect. He enjoys relaxing with his two dogs and reading books.

* One employee asked that his information not be included in this list.