UNK staff members recognized for outstanding service

KEARNEY – Three University of Nebraska at Kearney staff members were recognized Wednesday for their outstanding service to students and the university.

UNK Staff Senate President Stacy Darveau presented the Staff Awards for Excellence to Kiphany Hof, Susan Deiger and Joni Weed during the annual Faculty/Staff Convocation. Each honoree received a plaque and $1,000.

Staff Awards for Excellence are sponsored by UNK and the Jim and Lynn Rundstrom Family Foundation Fund.


As associate director of counseling, Hof ensures students have access to quality, affordable mental health care.

She’s worked with Men’s Project, supported students in the “Let’s Talk” program, provided counseling services for student-athletes and created a “postvention” committee to address the aftermath of suicide. Hof is currently working with the Health Promotion Office to develop curriculum to train students to be mental health care coaches. She also secured a contract to provide online, anonymous mental health support for all students.

A member of the UNK community for more than a decade, colleagues describe Hof as a progressive thinker who’s unafraid of challenges and takes every opportunity to positively impact campus.


An office associate in the Department of Music, Theatre and Dance, Deiger is known for her calm demeanor, friendly personality and willingness to help out wherever she’s needed – even if that means shoveling the sidewalk or sewing costumes at night.

She supervises and mentors student employees, manages box office operations and serves as a liaison for on- and off-campus groups visiting the Fine Arts Building. She also organizes monthly lunches to build team camaraderie.

Deiger has been with UNK since 1998, accumulating a wealth of knowledge she shares with others in the department.


A positive role model for everyone on campus, Weed has been with UNK for 35 years.

She serves as the office associate for Academic Advising and Career Development, where her colleagues appreciate her adaptability, resilience and positive impact on the workplace. She’s a team player and “human encyclopedia” who mentors office associates across campus and is always willing to tackle a new task. An includer by nature, Weed celebrates her co-workers’ life milestones, invites them to lunch and other activities and organizes an annual Halloween costume contest.

Weed has been a member of Staff Senate, the Employee Recognition Committee, Leadership UNK and the Emergency Operations Team, and she’s received the Employee Achievement and University of Nebraska Board of Regents KUDOS awards.

However, her greatest contribution is the impact she has on the lives of students. She truly cares about each student she meets.