Employees of the Year Recognized

August 7, 2020

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Information
Crowder College

Employee of the Year Awards

Neosho, MO – Three employees of Crowder College received “Employee of the Year” awards for the 2019-2020 academic year. There was one employee selected from each employee category: faculty, professional staff, and classified staff. Employees were nominated by their peers and/or students and winners were selected by area Chambers of Commerce.

The Gold Star award for faculty went to Terry Clarkson, Construction Technology/Advanced Manufacturing Technology/Apprenticeship Instructor. Sentiments received in the nomination process from co-workers and past students illustrated what a wonderful man that Terry was. He passed away in April of this year after a sudden illness.

“Terry worked hard in all the things he did and was well liked by his students and by his colleagues. Students always felt seen and heard when they were being instructed by Terry and they appreciated his soft-spoken leadership and his experience. Terry Clarkson was the human embodiment of Servant Leadership.”

“Terry Clarkson’s gift was his true compassion for others. He also learned names fast, and he used them. Mr. Clarkson would look his students in the eye, often shake their hands, and genuinely greet them by name. He clearly cared and when a teacher cares, students excel. Terry’s positive attitude brightened the days of his coworkers and friends as well.”

“How you make others feel, says a lot about you.” Terry made every single student, staff, and person he came in contact with feel important, cared about, loved, and a genuine JOY for life. Terry was a mentor for his students, but also for his coworkers.”

This award is selected and presented by the Neosho Area Chamber of Commerce. Accepting the award on Terry’s behalf was his daughter and son, Cheyenne Clarkson and Ray Hailey.




The Professional Staff Employee of the Year award was presented to Helen Hale, Student Success Center Director. Helen was nominated based upon her generosity and giving nature which is displayed not only in her role at Crowder but within her community. Helen is a model Servant Leader, she is humble, kind and caring. Helen is seen as a leader amongst her peers and co-workers and is often the liaison between faculty and advisors.  Helen works tirelessly to provide students with guidance and direction as they pursue their educational goal. This award is selected by the McDonald County Chamber of Commerce and presented by the President of the Crowder College Professional Staff Association.




The Classified Staff Employee of the Year award went to Jane Gray, Office Manager – Joplin.  Jane was nominated based upon her ability to make every opportunity a positive, rewarding, and learning experience. Jane has served in a variety of roles at Crowder and her work ethic and attention to detail has left an impact on each one. Jane takes time to reach out to others and help whenever and wherever needed. She takes the extra moment to stop and say “Hi”, share a smile, or ask how someone is. Jane truly cares about Crowder as a whole – from the students, the faculty, the staff, and the guests visiting campus. Jane sets the standard high for employee morale and work ethic, she is incredibly deserving of the award and recognition. This award is selected by the Neosho Area Chamber of Commerce.



Last Updated on August 7, 2020 by Cindy