Skip to Content Find it Fast

This browser does not support Cascading Style Sheets.

University-wide Staff Awards
2013 Recipients

Regina McCarthy















Regina McCarthy

The 2013 Social Justice Award
Assistant Dean, Academic Student Services
University of New Hampshire - Manchester

“Regina has been the face and voice of social justice at UNH Manchester before social justice was even a movement on college campuses. Social justice is her most deeply held core value,” says colleague and Director of Academic Counseling Carol Swiech.

McCarthy is a social justice educator for the University; a member of UNH Manchester’s Student Veteran Advocacy Team; and the founder and member of the college’s Diversity and Inclusive Excellence Committee. She also serves as a representative to the University Council for Inclusive Excellence and Equity and is a member of the statewide groups The NH Inclusive Learning Communities and the NH Multicultural Student Affairs Consortium. In 2012 McCarthy was also elected to serve a second two-year term as President of the Learning Assistance Association of New England.

The Social Justice awards honor UNH community members who have demonstrated excellence and integrity with respect to advancing social justice issues within our community and beyond. Each year, one faculty member, one staff member, one graduate student, one undergraduate student and one student organization is recognized for his or her role in providing outstanding leadership, courage and positive role modeling in promoting social justice issues such as diversity, equity, and human rights.

-- Mike Ross, UNH Photographic Services

About the Social Justice Award 



Faina Bukher
Faina Bukher

The 2013 UNH Women's Commission Stephanie Thomas Staff Award

Assistant to the Coordinator
Women's Studies Program

To Faina Bukher, working in the Women’s Studies Program isn’t just a job, it’s a way of being. She is known in the department as an excellent instructor. Outside of the classroom Bukher works on a number of programs and events that help raise awareness of issues that affect women across campus.

Bukher is a coordinator of UNH's annual “Feminist Week,” and past works included planning a reception to celebrate New Hampshire’s women in politics. She has served on the advisory board of SHARPP, is a volunteer facilitator for Social Justice Educators and has also served on the President’s Commission on the Status of GLBT Issues. In addition, Bukher also serves the larger community as an advocate for Sexual Assault Support Services.

Bukher not only teaches dynamic courses in Women’s Studies but is a leader in women’s issues across campus.

-- Mike Ross, UNH Photographic Services

Suzanne Sonneborn

(not pictured - retired from UNH summer 2013)
The 2013 UNH Women's Commission Stephanie Thomas Staff Award

Nutrition Educator
UNH Health Services

Suzanne Sonneborn wants to put an end to the cycle of young women growing up with poor body images and eating disorders. Through her work at Health Services she created innovative campaigns to address body image and fight “fat talk.”

Instead of focusing on diet, Sonneborn’s work focused on fighting the cultural obsession with weight, a concept that goes against the mainstream strategies. By listening to students she learned what motivates people to make better choices and used those messages to create her programs. Sonneborn created two of the only programs in the United States which train students to advocate for one another when it comes to body image and eating habits, going directly to the young women who struggle with body image and putting the power to change it in their hands

Sonneborn’s kindness toward young women struggling with weight issues and her programs, such as “Love Your Body Campaign,” help young women on campus fight the culture of destructive body image.

About the Stephanie Thomas Staff Award



UNH WildActs

WildActs Social Justice Theatre Troupe

The 2013 Joyce Gibbs Award

The UNH WildActs Social Justice Theatre Troupe and Advisors
(pictured: Ansley Berg, Jonathan Constable, Joseph Juknievich, Brandon McQuade, Travis Nason, Grace Stover, Kelsey Sullivan, Rachel Vilandre, Stephanie Yea, Adam Zak)

Sometimes it’s better to show, rather than tell. That’s what the acting group WildActs and its advisors David Kaye and Michele Holt-Shannon are trying to do through their original improv skits and prepared readings.

WildActs has visited many organizations on campus to raise awareness of the value of inclusion and to start conversations on tough topics.

The group recently coordinated with the Women’s Commission to create the video “One Word at a Time,” which featured original skits about using better word choices, advancing civility and creating a better campus climate for women.

WildActs is taking a new approach to injustice and how to become our best possible selves by starting conversations about equity and inclusion across campus.


About the Joyce Gibbs Award



Pamela Bishop
Pamela Bishop

The 2013 UNH Professional Advising Award

Academic Counselor
Dean’s Office, College of Health and Human Services

It is very clear that Pamela Bishop is genuinely committed to her role as an advisor and cares about the students of the University of New Hampshire - inside and out of the College of Health and Human Services. Pam is recognized as a highly engaged academic counselor, day after day, year after year by her students and her peers. Students arriving in her office after the summer has passed are always pleased and honored that Pam remembers their name, college major and goals without even looking at their file.

The students that Pam serves appreciate and value her energy, compassion and kind nature, and are assured that she will do everything she can to help them find their way in their major, their academics and their career direction. Pam's methods of advising guarantees success because she is so invested in her students. She offers resources and strategies that are realistic and manageable and she follows up with her students to be sure what she recommended is indeed making a difference. She supports and allows her students to take accountability for their learning and to be the leader in their journey at UNH.

When Pam is not advising UNH students she is also engaged in the community as a volunteer for the Seacoast Reads program through the Department of Education.

One of her former advisees shares "Pam Bishop represents what every academic counselor should be like, she represents the optimism, opportunities and greatness that UNH possesses."

-- Mike Ross, UNH Photographic Services

About the Professional Advising Award