Staff Council

The Staff Council was re-organized by Dr. Levin-Stankevich on October 2013. The council collaborates with administration to further the college's mission and goals while fostering an inclusive and transparent environment for an engaged and empowered staff community. The council's key roles are:

  • Share information from cabinet meetings with staff (grassroots)
  • Facilitate inclusion
  • Create ad-hoc committees and task forces
  • Advocate on behalf of staff

The Staff Council holds meetings once a month to discuss council business and host an open forum. Westminster staff are invited to attend and to submit topics for discussion.


Staff Professional Development

The Staff Council is dedicated to supporting the professional development of Westminster staff. Full-time staff are eligible to apply for the Staff Council's Staff Professional Development Fund to help pay for professional development activities such as workshops, conferences, trainings, and more. The council also invests in hosting periodic professional development events on campus.

Staff Groups and Staff Council Events

Get to know your peers—attend one of the council’s periodic social events, including tailgates, paint nights, and more, or bond with other staff members by joining or creating a staff group.


Staff Retreat

Each summer, the council hosts the Staff Retreat, which includes workshops, the announcement of new Staff Council members, staff recognition and awards, and more.

Staff Recognition

Staff Council recognizes the hard work and dedication of staff members in several ways:

  • Staff of the Month: Each month, Staff Council recognizes a Staff of the Month, selecting a winner from staff who are nominated by members of the campus community. You can submit a nomination or view previous winners and nominees online.
  • Staff Emeritus: The Staff Emeritus Program recognizes long-time staff contributions to Westminster and strives to maintain a connection with staff who have retired.
  • Staff Community Awards: Awards are given out each year at the Staff Retreat to winners who were nominated by their peers. A variety of categories recognize work over the past year.
  • Virtual Applause Cards: Send a virtual applause card to give recognition for why another staff member is great.


You can contact Staff Council by email ( for any questions, concerns, or more information. You can also submit comments to the Staff Council by submitting a feedback form.

Hannah Thorne


Hannah joined the Westminster community in August of 2018, shortly after moving to Salt Lake City from Montana. She works as the Manager of Advancement Events in the Office of Advancement where she plans events for Westminster Alumni and Donors. Her favorite thing about Westminster is its commitment to the success and well-being of students, and she loves that she is able to share the good work taking place on campus with a wider audience through her work. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Julian, taking her dog, Brewster, to the park, knitting, and baking.

Deborah Marzano

Vice Chair

Deborah was born and raised in Italy. Coming from a line of artists and having a passion for art, she studied fine arts and architecture as a young teen. Her second passion in life is for culture and languages, which drove her to study intercultural communication, as well as social and cultural anthropology as a young adult. Deborah has been at Westminster for almost 3 years, working with the Bill and Vieve Gore School of Business graduate programs. Deborah recently graduated from the MBA program, which allowed her to practice business tools while testing her artistic, entrepreneurial projects.

After completing her MBA, Deborah has more mental space to offer up and decided to get involved with Staff Council to be an active member of the Westminster community. She wants to support and unify our campus community, create activities that will enhance our experience as coworkers, improve communication, and ensure the community hears the staff's voice when making decisions across campus.

Shianne Gray

Communications Coordinator

Shianne ('15) graduated from the Theatre Arts and Honors programs. Shianne works as the manager of advancement events. She started at Westminster in the summer of 2020 after receiving her MFA in arts administration from Southern Utah University. In addition to her work at Westminster, she's involved in the Salt Lake City theatre community, working as the festival director of the Great Salt Lake Fringe Festival, and as managing director of Pinnacle Acting Company.

Shianne is also into reading, crafting, music, travel, and playing Dungeons & Dragons. She looks forward to becoming more involved with the staff community at Westminster and would be thrilled to bring my expertise in event planning, marketing, and community organizing to support Westminster's staff.

Sarah Lof


Sarah first came to Westminster as a student and later joined Westminster as a staff member in 2009. Sarah currently serves as the graduation coordinator and office manager for the Registrar's Office. The success of Westminster's students is of the utmost importance to Sarah. She feels that having a strong Westminster community that includes happy and engaged staff improves the student experience. Outside of work, Sarah is a self-described TV and pop culture junkie. When she finds free time, she enjoys skiing, hiking, and walking her dog, Blue.

Dalton Bamburg

Dalton is the accounts receivable coordinator and a graduate student in the School of Education. Prior to joining Westminster, he served in a variety of roles, including teaching English as a second language in Taiwan, a brief stint at a monastery, and a baked goods connoisseur. He is interested in creating benefits for all those who enter Westminster College and serving his colleagues by joining the Staff Council.

Shae Barber

Shae is a First Year Admissions Counselor. They graduated from the University of Utah with a HBA in Political Science and a HBA in Communications. Prior to joining Westminster College, Shae worked in the nonprofit industry, specializing in programs, events, and communications. They are a member of the Kappa Tau Alpha Honor Society and the National Society of Leadership and Success. They love to travel, and have visited 20 U.S. National Parks, 18 states, and 9 countries. On the weekends you can find them painting, reading, and enjoying anything the outdoors has to offer.

Chante Jimenez

Chante is the director of field placement for the School of Education. She works with student teachers and students completing their clinical hours in schools across the valley. As part of her job, she works with classroom teachers and school districts to ensure Westminster's School of Education students get the training required to be effective elementary, middle school, and high school teachers. Prior to this position, she taught in a local Title I elementary school for over 9 years. She is a graduate of Westminster, where she earned her undergraduate degree in K-8 education, and minors in English and Spanish. Chante returned several years later and graduated from the Community Leadership program. Chante has a passion for advocating for people and looks forward to meeting and working with all campus employees.

Madi Jones

Madi is a Westminster Alum (’17) who worked at the library as a student employee and never left. She has been a full-time Giovale employee for 5 years and is currently the Circulation Manager. Her primary role in this position is supervising student employees, which has fostered a passion for student growth and success. Outside of interacting with students, Madi’s favorite part of her job is building and diversifying the library collection to best support our community. She also enjoys collaborating with faculty and staff outside of her department and hopes that staff council will introduce more opportunities to do so. Outside of work she can occasionally be found up Millcreek Canyon with her pack of dogs, but it’s more likely she’s on the couch reading a fantasy novel or playing video games. 

Laura Kendellen

Laura has been the director of web strategy for more than 3 years. She often leads efforts to collaborate across departments, bringing the right experts together and finding consensus on solutions that meet various needs and goals across the college community. Laura's diplomatic experience translates well when serving on a committee that supports and represents the entire staff of Westminster in an official capacity. Laura's connections with staff across the college and knowledge of college initiatives can support collaboration on efforts that directly benefit staff and their experiences working at Westminster. Laura enjoys cross-stitching, biking, kayaking, traveling, watching Green Bay Packers games, and sampling local beers outside of work.

AJ Kerns

AJ has worked at Westminster for 2 years in the Professional and Continuing Education program, advising BBA, PMBA, and RN to BS students. Before joining the Westminster community, she worked as a program manager at the University of Utah for the Professional Education department, fundraising manager for Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA), and a health unit coordinator at University Neuropsychiatric Institute.

In AJ's free time, she enjoys film photography, playing with her cat son, and pursuing an endless list of craft hobbies. She is also pursuing the MACL program at Westminster. AJ has a strong passion for uplifting the communities she belongs to and strives to make connections and new friends with those on campus every chance she gets. She has a deep love for the Westminster community and the staff that composes its diverse and rich culture. AJ wants to serve on the Staff Council to deepen her roots, connections, and understanding of the needs and strengths of the staff on campus.

Sierra Krippner

Sierra arrived at Westminster College in 2017, after completing a degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Utah. She fell in love with residence life through three years in a Resident Advisor role. Sierra oversees half of Westminster's Resident Advisors, advises the Residence Hall Association, performs Resident Director duties with a team of on-call staff members, and helps with daily matters in the Office of Residence Life. She loves Westminster's group fitness classes and can often be found playing darts, basketball, hiking, trying out a new recipe, or taking pictures.

Daniel Quinn

Daniel is entering his 9th year as the head women's and men's cross country and track coach. Daniel has been an adjunct teacher for Fitness for Life for the past 7 years. He has a master's in sports medicine and has been in the education and coaching field since 1986. Prior to coming to Westminster College, Daniel has served as an athletic director, dean of students, teacher, and coach. He believes it is good to have a representative from Westminster College Athletics on the Staff Council because coaches can give insight into what is happening with student-athletes. It is always a good thing to have different points of view to help bridge the life of Westminster's students with the faculty and coaches.

Meredith Nickels

Meredith is currently the Scheduling and Publications Coordinator at the college. Meredith has many roles over my 11 years at Westminster. Meredith has been an undergraduate student, MBA student, worked in the Career Center, Admissions Operations, and is now happy to currently work in the Registrar’s Office. Meredith is originally from Lake Bluff, IL and moved out here to hike, ski, and be outside. Meredith is excited to join Staff Council and to continue helping make Westminster College the best place it can be. 

Jan Saeed

Jan is the Director of Global Peace & Spirituality at Westminster College, an educator and  social activist.  She served as the founding chairperson of the Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable and co chair of the Chaplain’s Committee for the 2002 Salt Lake Olympic Organizing Committee and continued in that role for 5 years Continuing with that organization, she is now serving as Vice Chair. She has served on the board of the North American Interfaith Network (NAIN) as their secretary, the Utah State Martin Luther King Human Rights Commission, and Co Chaired the Salt Lake Institute for the Healing of Racism. She has been an educator of religious and spiritual topics within the Baha’i Faith community, for the Utah Humanities Council, various universities, and at conferences such as the 2004, 2015, and 2018 Parliaments of World Religions in Barcelona Spain, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA and Toronto, Canada. Presented at the 2012 Global Conference of Chaplains in Higher Education at Yale University and many NASPA conferences. She holds a Bachelors Degree in Health Education from the University of Utah and a Masters Degree in Conflict Resolution from Landegg International University in Switzerland.  She is married with three adult children and four grandchildren

Pamela Shield

Pamela started in October 2020 as the director of events. Because she began during the pandemic, the one difficult thing is getting to know everyone on campus without those social interactions of lunch, coffee, and happy hour dates. Pamela is excited that the college is moving into a place where events will be taking place in person again, and staff can enhance the school with some fun social events.
Pamela has always been a planner and loves helping people figure out how to create unique and creative events and making people happy to see their dreams come to life. Her professional background has always been hospitality. She graduated college with a degree in hospitality and has worked with hotels, destination management companies, and third-party meeting planning companies ever since.

Pamela has traveled the globe with fun events, whether planning a ski weekend at St. Regis for a corporate event, heading off to the Bahamas with a couple's incentive weekend, or hosting an association in the heart of Boston. Even in her personal life, she loves planning parties, vacations and helping friends with theirs. Being at a college is an entirely new set of fun challenges. Pamela looks forward to growing with this new experience and hopefully elevating the campus to a well-known sought-after venue.

Lindsie Smith

Lindsie is the Director of Westminster’s Gore Giovale Center for Innovative Leadership. Lindsie brings 15+ years of marketing, relationship management, and nonprofit leadership to this new role. Before joining Westminster’s staff, she was the Executive Director of Clark Planetarium and counts the launch of a community outreach program, an extensive exhibits renovation, and the development of a strategic plan focused on increasing STEM access as her proudest achievements. Lindsie has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wyoming and a Master’s in Community Leadership from Westminster College. When not at work, she loves reading, gardening, experimenting and creating with ceramics and fiber arts, and hiking with either her husband, son or friends, but always with her trusty pup, Pepper. She also continues to love space and science and enjoys the beautiful dark skies found in southern Utah. 

Ashlyn Talcott

Ashlyn has welcomed Westminster College into her life in several capacities. From working as a student employee while an undergraduate student, earning a double-major in Finance and Business Management, giving the 2021 Spring Commencement speech as an excited graduating student, starting a full-time staff position in the Office of Admissions during summer 2021, and starting the MBA program as a graduate student, to finally settling into her current role as Office Manager/Adjunct Coordinator in the Gore School of Business. Ashlyn loves the college's community and people, niche educational experience, and beautiful campus.

Outside of her professional and academic life, Ashlyn enjoys visiting Utah's national parks (especially Arches National Park in Moab), re-reading and watching the Harry Potter series, and spending time with her friends and family. She looks forward to serving on Staff Council and hopes to further engage professional development opportunities and connection-building.

AJ Verkouw

AJ joined the Westminster community in 2019. Before joining Westminster, AJ worked in outdoor education in the mountain west for the better part of a decade. He helped coordinate collegiate outdoor programs at Colorado State University-Pueblo, Fort Lewis College, and the University of Utah. During that tenure, AJ worked as an Outward Bound instructor and staff trainer, climbing wall manager, professional ski patroller, avalanche educator, river guide, environmental educator, and climbing instructor.

AJ had the privilege of working and traveling in amazing places like Alaska, Nepal, and Ecuador. Having had careers before outdoor education and leadership in printing technology and as a professional musician gave AJ diverse experiences with diverse individuals. These experiences led AJ to believe that learning and personal growth happen within relationships. This belief drives an approach to education focused on building strong, inclusive, and authentic cultural containers and communities that encourage trust, empathy, mutual respect, and caring. AJ is excited to serve on the Staff Council to invest in the larger Westminster community and advocate for continued dedication to those values.