Senior Program Support Assistant
Family Research Lab / Crimes Against Children Research Center
It would be nearly impossible to write a job description that reflects the dizzying array of tasks that Doreen Cole takes on in her role with the Family Research Lab and Crimes Against Children Research Center.
For more than 20 years, Doreen has kept the office humming along smoothly both in good times and when the inevitable quirks crop up. So, when people are out sick, when equipment fails and when schedules go awry, Doreen is always there to put things back on track.
As one colleague said: “She has delivered important papers and books to hospital rooms, helped teaching assistants prepare for classes, stayed late, come in early, been available after-hours for a call from a far-distant time zone and soothed nerves of doctoral students getting ready for thesis defenses. She does this all without giving the slightest sense that it is unusual or an unwelcome deviation from her normal day-to-day.”
For two decades, her work has been instrumental in supporting the Family Research Lab. And two years ago, she became the primary administrative support for the Crimes Against Children Research Center. That change nearly doubled her responsibilities, yet Doreen managed to make the transition happen seamlessly.
She has also been a mentor and life coach to many work-study students, teaching them how to work and carry themselves as professionals.
For many of the center’s visitors, the trust and friendship that Doreen shares symbolize the character of the UNH community. In nominating her, a colleague wrote: “There are many types of people who determine the way someone remembers a place, and for a lot of people Doreen is one of the main reasons they look at UNH as a hardworking and productive yet welcoming and nurturing environment.”
That is high praise indeed. Large organizations are powered in part by people who, while not leaders in title, are leaders through their example and personality. Doreen Cole is one of those people.