Blake Wood
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Michele Sapp has been named the University of Illinois Springfield Employee of the Month for April 2023. She is a business manager for the Center for State Policy and Leadership (CSPL) Office of the Executive Director.

Her nominator said she shows leadership in her helpful approach and makes herself available to colleagues, supervisors and internal and external partners. She is also a problem solver.

“She does not put walls up; rather she helps those of us trying to navigate process and bureaucracy to allow projects to move forward and partnerships to emerge,” said her nominator. “Michele is critical to operations of CSPL and is one of the reasons CSPL has the largest external funding portfolios on the UIS campus.”

She routinely works with CSPL staff and faculty to make sure all requirements are met and the proposals are submitted before these fast-approaching deadlines. Recently, she assisted CSPL staff in preparing a proposal for a grant from the National Science Foundation, which required Sapp to work with CSPL staff to quickly develop an accurate, multi-year, proposal that involved a budget with multiple CSPL team members and budget line items.

“Without Ms. Sapp’s assistance, this opportunity likely would have been missed,” said Molly Lamb, her supervisor and executive director of CSPL. “Further, many of our partners

have required procedures that must be followed and frequently change. Sapp routinely remains apprised of the changes and works with our staff to implement those changes, often on quick timelines to remain in compliance with our funders.”

Sapp also routinely works with CSPL staff to work through incredibly complicated proposals to understand the best way forward. She recently assisted in developing a proposal that will feature ten different team members with varying responsibilities spread out over two fiscal years. She quickly was able to untangle the various possibilities, barriers and requirements to assemble the proposal.

“She cuts to the chase and gets work done, and while that may seem direct, she has become a ‘go-to’ for grant administration (from proposals to reporting) for CSPL,” Lamb said. “Her work has created credibility for UIS and CSPL as a whole.”

Sapp promotes a focused approach to the day-to-day work in CSPL. She can dissect the facts, tease out unnecessary aspects of a situation and have a plan to move forward in the completion of the work.

“Sapp shows up and is extremely dependable – both in her knowledge base and presence,” Lamb said. “As CSPL and research initiatives grow, so does her responsibility and workload. She remains focused and gets work done.”

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