Elaine Puorro

Elaine Puorro
Presidential Award of Excellence, 2018

Financial Support Specialist

It’s the role of Business Services to counsel UNH students on all of the financial aspects of their college experience. Fortunately for those students, Elaine Puorro is there to serve as their guide.

Since 2011, Elaine has worked as a liaison with the university’s tuition management systems, which initiate billing and process payments, loans and scholarships. The number of families depending on these systems makes this a huge and critical task. But it is one that Elaine meets with indefatigable enthusiasm. She is a welcoming presence for students and parents alike.

Just as important, she’s a welcoming presence for her colleagues. During a stretch of lean years when staff turnover left the business office shorthanded, Elaine was hailed for her admirable work ethic. And her steady presence helped to ensure that the department continued to run smoothly.

A strong proponent for workplace efficiency, she has collaborated with IT staff to create and revise reports that help to better manage her department’s workload.  A vocal advocate for work-life balance, she teamed up with Business Services directors to develop a plan for flexible work hours that ensured continued excellent customer service and met employees’ needs. The plan not only benefited the department, it helped bolster office morale and foster a more productive and motivated staff.

Elaine’s dedication to excellence through innovation has included Lean Training classes, which led to new efficiencies between Business Services’ procedures and those used by the Financial Aid office.  She also has been a strong advocate for the upcoming upgrade to the Banner student administrative system, which will provide a more user-friendly and secure web interface for students.

Hardly the “mess in a dress” she’s been known to describe herself as, Elaine embodies what every supervisor should strive to be. She is caring and kind, given to sharing her knowledge with others and taking on with enthusiasm the tasks that others would hesitate to tackle. She truly has it all together.

About This Award

All members of the university community, including leadership, supervisors & managers, peers, colleagues and students may nominate any qualified staff member by completing the Presidential Award of Excellence nomination form online or by requesting a paper application from Human Resources and forwarding it to the Presidential Award of Excellence Peer Review Committee, c/o Human Resources, Nesmith Hall each year by the deadline.