On April 23, Converse College presented the Spirit of Converse award to Mark Osinga and John James. The Spirit of Converse Award is presented to employees who embody the core values of the college and positively impact the Converse community through their professional and personal contributions. This annual award is one of the college’s most distinctive honors and provides an important opportunity to celebrate those who go above and beyond the call of duty in serving Converse and her students, faculty, staff, alumnae and friends. Recipients of the award are selected because they serve as an example for the community through their commitment and contributions to the college, support of colleagues, team spirit, cooperation, enthusiasm and loyalty.
In presenting the award to Mark Osinga, facility planner for Converse, President Betsy Fleming recognized Osinga’s “can do” attitude and team player spirit. “He is respected and admired not only by his division colleagues, but also by the broader campus community and the Board of Trustees. He is known for going beyond the call of duty and his willingness to jump in to get the job done, regardless of the task,” she said. President Fleming also jokingly noted Osinga’s willingness to go so far as to put on scuba diving gear to change the cover to the drain at the bottom of the pool in order to save the cost of outsourcing this service.
The second award recipient, John James, is chief technology officer at Converse. President Fleming praised James for being passionate about his work and for the enjoyment he finds in sharing his knowledge with others. “He is innovative, creative and has a great sense of humor. John James has a true love for Converse and embodies the spirit of Converse and her core values,” she said. James was also commended for actively working in the Upstate community to promote Converse and encourage young women to enroll at the college.