LITSers enjoy Staff Fest 2017

LITS Line Dancers (L to R): Carla Ashe, Susan Henschen, Jennifer Stokes, Nydia Charles Huggins, Nayef Smith, Dawn Francis-Chewning, Sandra Harrison, Khadijah Muhammad, Abby Ellerbe

Staff Fest 2017 was a big hit with Emory staff as the sunny weather and improved food options yielded increased attendance for the annual event.

Held in the Quad, the event featured barbecue catered by Jim ‘N Nick’s BBQ Restaurant, as well as a variety of activities including volleyball and corn hole tournaments, a climbing wall, caricature artists, ice cream and popcorn vendors, and DJ-led dancing.

The LITS line dancers were back, performing another well-choreographed dance routine despite the high temperatures and blinding white dance floor. “I will never wear white again – especially with the white dance floor,” said Dawn Francis-Chewning. “But SO MUCH FUN! I love dancing with this crew.”

Kaven Moodley (L) and James Alston.

The annual Fun Run Walk saw several LITs employees take home ribbons including Kaven Moodley, Garrett Southwell, and James Alston, who finished first, second, and third in the Men’s 50+ division and Lee Clontz, who finished second in the Men’s 40-49 division. Others who raced were Kat Boushell, Erika Buchholz, Folé Gailor, Jay Flanagan, Kirsten Wehner, Michelle Wilson, Khalid Sharif, Raj Garrepally, Sandra Harrison, Susan Henschen, Tracy Preyer, Bev Turner, and Veta Williamson.


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Emory Box is getting a new look

Box promotional graphicDuring the May IT Briefing, I announced that Emory Box is being upgraded this summer with new features that will improve usability. These features include an easier to navigate file structure and enhanced graphic displays for photographs.

Here is a video and a slidedeck, both from Box, explaining some of the changes:

New Box Experience Video

Details of what is new or changed

If you are interested in testing the new interface, send me an email and I will send you the instructions.

As I mentioned in the IT Briefing, as soon as I get a little more of a consensus on dates for moving everyone to the new UI this summer, I will be communicating it to everyone.

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Newly opened Healthgate Drive relieves traffic pressure around NDB

Healthgate Drive as you leave campus (NDB is on the left). Yoda says, “Block not do.”

After over a year of traffic congestion caused by the “J Wing” construction project, there is some relief. Healthgate Drive, the short but important road that passes between the North Decatur Building and the Lowergate South parking deck, opened Monday and, so far, all seems to be going well. Up until recently, this was a gated road used only by the Emory Police.

Currently, you cannot exit the Lowergate South parking deck onto Healthgate. You must still exit by the Law School. However, there are now two lanes, one for turning left and one for turning right on to Gambrell.

Leaving campus on Healthgate Drive, you can turn east or west. Entering campus you can only turn when driving west and turning right onto Heathgate.

First announced in 2016, Healthgate Drive is part of the Clifton Streetscape project, which is scheduled to be completely finished this summer.

According to the project charter, “These enhancements are being made to improve the patient experience at Emory Healthcare, and to provide enhanced access for thousands of Emory University and Emory Healthcare staff, students, faculty, patients, and visitors who travel on Clifton Road each day.”

The opening of Healthgate Drive gives staff and patients a much-needed additional artery onto North Decatur Road, and will hopefully help ease the daily bottleneck of traffic on Clifton Road.

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Network Services hosts Fun Day

John Ellis removes a Jenga piece while members of Network Services are transfixed.

On May 10, Wayne Ortman, Director of Network Services, held a town hall meeting in which he recognized many of his employees for their accomplishments, birthdays and service anniversaries. Wayne had asked a lot from his organization this year and to show his appreciation, he hosted the first LITS Network Services Fun Day.

Organized by William Boney, III and assisted by Michelle Crawford, Sebreana EcholsLamar Kelly, Linda Richardson, and Rosa Weston, the event featured refreshments, music, karaoke, and games. “They did an amazing job!” exclaimed Tommy Barwick.

The food was provided by Fox Bros Barbecue. Video games allowed people to interact with each other. They also had cards and other board games that gave everyone a chance to relax.

One of the highlights was what one person described as “the most intense game of Jenga ever played.” The players were Tommy Barwick, John Ellis, John Fries, Lamar Kelly, and James Sawyer.

Quite a few people participated in the karaoke, including Jimmy Kincaid, Nayef Smith, Dawn Peek and a host of others.

The evening was a big hit with everyone and is sure to become an annual event.

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Maya Cody, Events Manager, Campus and Community Relations

“My new team is truly a joy. Laughter is often in the air.” – Maya Cody

Maya Cody joins LITS as the newest events manager in CCR after spending the previous decade as the special events coordinator for Spelman College. She also worked in events management at Macy’s and AIDS Walk Atlanta.

Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, Maya has a bachelor’s degree of education from Spelman and a culinary arts degree from Johnson and Wales University. Maya’s father, Raymond B. Cody, is a renowned artist and co-owner of Cody’s Fine Arts with her mother, who recently retired as an IT executive with Macy’s. She also has a sister who received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from Emory University.

Maya loves spending time with family and friends, as well as her yorkie poo named Onyx. She enjoys volunteering and assisting with efforts that address the needs of under-served communities. She also has a passion for mentoring, attending events throughout the city, traveling, fashion and art. A pescatarian, Maya describes herself as a foodie who loves to offer great restaurant recommendations.

“My new team is truly a joy,” said Maya. “Laughter is often in the air.”

You can reach her at maya [dot] cody [at] emory [dot] edu.

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LITS: recent headlines and upcoming events

Headlines & Events graphic banner



Recent LITS headlines:

Upcoming LITS events:

(go HERE for more information for each event)

  • May 20Symposium: Edwin A. Harleston: An Artist and Activist for the Ages, this symposium will explore the life and work of Edwin A. Harleston – 10 am – 3 pm – Jones Room and Rose Library in the Woodruff Library. Register HERE.
  • May 24LITS Game Day – Computing Center at Cox Hall
  • June 15 – IT Briefing: a monthly look into the IT projects across LITS – 10:15 am – noon – NDB 4th Floor Auditorium
  • June 15 – “Billy Howard’s Epitaphs for the Living” exhibit opens in Level 3 Corridor Gallery; photographs of people living with HIV/AIDS in the 1980s
  • June 22 – Epitaphs for the Living: Conversation with Billy Howard – 6:30 pm – Jones Room. More info:
  • June 29InfoForum: Newly formed Libraries Grants Support Committee to share charter and resources with staff – 2 pm – 3 pm – Woodruff Library E314
  • July 27InfoForum: Developing 21st Century Business Leaders through Practice: The organizational dynamics and roles of librarians and other facilitators of experiential field-based learning in U.S. MBA education – 2 pm – 3 pm – Woodruff Library E314
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Guess who’s turning 25?

    25 year-old photo of three employeesESD Team Members circa 1992 (from L to R) : Mike Ewanowski, Barbara Anderson, Erika Buchholz

The first person was loaded into Emory Shared Data (ESD) on May 11, 1992. For those who don’t remember 1992, here’s some context. George H.W. Bush was president. The newly constructed Georgia Dome opened in September of that year. Greg Maddux, not yet a Brave, won the Cy Young award as the Cubs’ ace pitcher. Sun had recently formed a project to develop Oak, a new programming language which would later be renamed Java.

ESD was the brain child of Barbara Anderson, who is now retired. Barbara noticed that people in different departments were each building their own application to integrate commonly used data. They rarely used the same business rules for their integrations, leading to inconsistent data and reports amongst the departments. Always a visionary, Barbara created ESD, an integrated database of commonly used data and made it available to the Emory IT community.

Emory Shared Data’s purpose has sharpened over the course of time. Under the leadership of Anne Marie Alexander (LITS: Identity and Access Management) ESD has focused on its role as a person repository, containing the identities of everyone affiliated with Emory.

Photo of four employees

The ESD Team Today (from L to R): Elizabeth Bell, Anne Marie Alexander, Erika Buchholz, Russ Havard

Never heard of ESD? Here’s what you should know. Emory Shared Data gets data from PeopleSoft HR  and OPUS and combines those records into one Emory identity. Identity data for both University and Healthcare sponsored persons are manually entered directly into ESD through web applications, as are records for pre-started employees. And once an identity is in ESD, it stays there. There are over 840,000 people currently in ESD.

Emory Shared Data is also the source of a number of commonly used identifiers, such as NetID (University and Healthcare), PPID (Public Person ID), and Emory Card Number. A host of flags are derived there as well.

What does it take for a system to not just survive, but thrive for 25 years? It must fill a need, be built on stable technologies, and evolve as the needs of the business change.

Congratulations, Emory Shared Data, on reaching your 25th birthday!

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