Employee of the Month - November 2022

Denny Cubbage - Operations Coordinator, Department of Design - COTA

Awarded Wednesday, November 16, 2022, via Zoom Virtual celebration. Denny was joined by President Jane Close Conoley, College of the Arts (COTA) Dean Anne D’ Zmura, Design Department Chair Jose Rivera, COTA Administrative Services Manager Chanel Acker, his parents, numerous COTA and campus colleagues, and students from Department of Design classes 254 and 490.

"Since joining our Design family in 2016, Denny has been an outstanding colleague and the best Operations Coordinator we ever had,” said Design Department Chair Jose Rivera. Denny’s day-to-day responsibilities include managing the department classrooms, labs, and shop facilities. Most importantly, he strives to facilitate space and technology for Design students to advance their professional practice through innovation and creative problem solving

Professor Rivera continues, “When Denny is performing his important duties, he always puts the safety and wellbeing of our faculty, staff, and students first.

“He has been an outstanding team member during major challenges and renovation projects in our department, such as the implementation of our new hi-tech equipment, computer labs, design classrooms, model shop renovation and other projects such as the Nohemi Gonzalez Shop Initiative.

“We are very appreciative of Denny's contributions to our department, and we are proud to celebrate his Employee of the Month Award."

Several of Denny’s colleagues have commended him for his contributions. “Denny is the backbone of our design department,” stated faculty member Von Dominguez. “His steady, behind the scenes effort is really what makes our department run and allows us to have a ‘normal’ day of teaching our students.

“Just a few examples of what Denny does for us: provides and maintains our shop and studio guidelines for the students; provides a detailed report to each faculty meeting of our design building issues and areas to address; helps EACH faculty member with any media, television installation, tech support to make sure we have the tools needed to teach our courses; assists and directs with CSULB facilities to make sure none of our schedules and classrooms are affected by any construction or work; sets up installations of our student work in the main display case and the Duncan Anderson Gallery; assist any faculty, staff or guest with any facility or building related issues; maintains our shop classrooms, machines, tools, etc.

“Denny is always there when called upon and does it with a smile. He never strays from providing us detailed reports, information, and emails that are relevant to our courses and students. I highly commend and recommend him for his exceptional service, leadership, and guidance.”

Diane Stein, an Administrative Coordinator in the Design department shared, “I work very closely with Denny on all matters that concern our department including equipment purchases, student assistant hiring and payroll, facilities issues, and much more. Denny always brings everything he has to the table and is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done.

“Denny often has special projects that require him to be in the department when there are no classes. Therefore, when the rest of us are getting a little respite from the lull in the action during the breaks, Denny is hard at work moving equipment, classrooms, AV equipment, computers, etc. as well as working on upgrades to our facilities. In fact, during the pandemic, Denny was in the department much of the time when the rest of us were working from home and still is in the department five days a week when others are only in the department a few days a week. He is there to make sure our building is running smoothly and safely.

“There is so much more; I could really go on and on. He's always willing to help me out whenever he can. So, not only does he go way above and beyond in his own job, but he is always willing to help others as well. I honestly don't know if I could do my job without him, and I certainly wouldn't want to!”

Design department Lecturer Britt Griffith praised Denny as well, “Denny keeps our entire building running like a true pro. He is hard working, accessible, and always willing to do whatever is needed. I can't say enough about Denny's work ethic and overall great attitude displayed at all times.”

Denny received an M.A. in Exhibition and Design from Cal State Fullerton and a B.A. in Art from Cal Poly Humboldt. He enjoys adventures along the coast with his daughter who is currently applying to CSULB as a Design major.