The Spirit of Leadership award recognizes senior IT leaders at IU. Successful senior IT leaders exhibit positive qualities that inspire and motivate others, a high level of integrity, and lead through example. Eligible candidates will have established experience in IT based leadership positions. Ideal candidates will be able to document increasing leadership responsibilities in the areas of strategic visioning, trust building, culture building, strategic risk taking, open communication, and mentorship.
Spirit of Leadership
"Jesse Oakes’ leadership style is focused entirely on empowering other people. He serves as a role model for ethical behavior, clarity in communication, equity, and inclusion. This is true both for his direct reports, the IT Community at IU, and his colleagues in the IT Leadership Community. Jesse truly embodies the Spirt of Leadership and is an inspiration to us all. "
2022 - Michele Kelmer
2020 - James Bennett
UITS Enterprise Systems Integration
Nominated by Jim Thomas
James began his career over 10 years ago as a Software Engineer developing enterprise middleware solutions for the ESI Team. James consistently demonstrates that his technical abilities and aptitude are truly exceptional. He is the “go to” person with any tech issues that is impossible to solve. What makes James an exceptional leader is his ability to work collaboratively with his peers while eagerly teaching others what he knows. Always willing to lend a hand when needed despite his own busy workload. Receptive to feedback to make his ideas even better and never takes differences of opinion personally, but instead enjoys discussion toward the best solution to solve a problem. James is a leader who makes everyone around him better which is exactly what exceptional leaders do. He takes time to explain complex technical topics in clear, easy-to-understand terms. He ensures that he and his team document their processes and procedures thoroughly and concisely. James’ team is among the most, if not the most productive teams ever witnessed in 30+ years of IT at IU.
2019 - Julie Johnston
With more than 20+ years in leadership and management deploying large-scale creative technology initiatives and projects, Julie’s career marks a deep commitment to the use of technology to promote excellence in teaching and learning. In five years, her tireless focus on learning spaces at IU has earned her and IU a national recognition for excellence in learning space design. She has co-led the EDUCAUSE Learning Spaces Working Group since 2015 and served on the EDUCAUSE Learning Spaces Rating System (LSRS) team leaders group since 2017.
2018 - Manjit Trehan
Manjit is an example of someone adjusting their view, putting new ideas into practice, and leading the way in improving their department as well as all of IU. In addition to the excellent work he has done with the Web Service Team, he also recently hosted an open Hackathon as a collaborative way to bring together people from a variety of areas in the sprit of learning and networking. Couple all of this with his kind nature and positive attitude and it's no surprise that this year's Spirit of Leadership award goes to Manjit Trehan.
2017 - Tom Visnius
2017's winner, Tom Visnius, has demonstrated leadership skills across the Enterprise Systems organization in UITS, not just within the confines of his home team. He actively participates in and contributes to strategy discussions that will benefit services to employees, and he influences the technical direction in UITS. Within his own team, he is a proven leader with innovative solutions and great training and mentoring skills.
His involvement in the ES Technology Advisory Group, and his future involvement in the PeopleSoft/ERP Development
Above all, he has tremendous integrity, exhibits almost inhuman positivity, is friendly and straightforward, and behaves like a true professional in every interaction.