Resolution 13-03 In Honor of Jacqueline Elaine Overton’s Service to the Employee Forum

Jackie Overton came to Chapel Hill by way of Hertford, North Carolina in 1975. She enrolled in The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Afro- and African American Studies (1985) and a Master’s degree in Education and Counseling (1988). In 2004, she earned a certificate in nonprofit leadership from the UNC School of Government and the School of Social Work.

In 1984, Overton began her nearly thirty year-long career at Carolina as a Public Safety employee, beginning as a Student Assistant and Appeals Clerk before being promoted to Office Manager and Assistant Hearing Officer, Hearing Officer and Training Specialist and, finally, Professional Development Manager and Training Specialist. Overton received the C. Knox Massey Distinguished Service Award in 2012.  In 2009, she received the Employee Forum’s Unsung Heel award for Service. In her capacity as Forum Chair, she has addressed both the Board of Trustees and the Faculty Council, a particular honor for a staff employee.   

All her life, Jackie has dedicated herself to self-improvement and service.  Jackie carries her father’s rigid military background in her expectations for herself and others, but leavens those expectations with heart and humor.  In her capacity as Forum Chair, she “walks with Kings [without losing] the common touch.”   

WHEREAS, Jackie Overton (’85, ‘89) has served as Chair of the Employee Forum since 2010, revitalizing the organization and bringing a new era of civility and professionalism to Forum operations; and,

WHEREAS, by creating alliances with campus administrators, faculty, and supervisors, Jackie has advanced staff concerns effectively via formal and informal channels, representing the approximately 8,300 staff employees at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a variety of labor issues to the Chancellor and his designees; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has revitalized and strengthened one of the main channels for dispute resolution by holding monthly meetings between Forum delegates and high-level administrators and creating opportunities to proactively address staff concerns; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has worked effectively with Chancellor Thorp and the Administration to create holistic change in the University’s Housekeeping Department, leading to new management and restructuring in the department to create better working conditions for the University’s lowest paid workers; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has served as a staff representative on a multitude of University committees, including the Housekeeping Director Search Committee which selected Darius Dixon, and the Chancellor’s Search Committee which selected Carol Folt as the University’s next leader; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has led the Forum’s volunteer effort in the UNC Build-a-Block campaign, which built ten houses for needy Carolina families in one year, a record for Habitat for Humanity; and,

WHEREAS, Overton serves on the Carolina Black Caucus and the University Managers’ Association, as well as on the boards of a variety of non-profits serving the underprivileged in the Triangle; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has championed an annual Forum food drive which successfully negotiated participation from Carolina athletic games to replenish food banks in the late winter; and,

WHEREAS, Overton regularly volunteers in the Carolina Campus Community Garden, an organization stemming from an Employee Forum idea which grows fresh vegetables for Carolina community members; and,

WHEREAS, Overton endeavored to recognize past contributions by the Employee Forum at its 20th anniversary event, bringing four chancellors together, including Forum founder Chancellor Hardin, along with senior administrators, decades of Forum Delegates and other Forum friends, in March 2012; and,

WHEREAS, Overton represented staff employees with honor through her addresses at University Day in 2011 and 2012, thrilling those who heard her motivating and emotional speeches; and,

WHEREAS, Overton has served as for almost 30 years as an employee of the Department of Public Safety, working now as its training and accreditation officer, responsible for organizing and conducting the ongoing in-service training for 180 civilian staff members in the Department of Public Safety;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that Jacqueline Overton is hereby granted the status of honorary lifetime delegate of the Employee Forum, in grateful recognition of her tireless service and leadership.

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