Anthony Purcell


Anthony PurcellHe manages a 24-hour operation, his facility is more than 26,000-square-feet, and his 68 employees prepare food for more than 30,000 students every single day.

And he’s still smiling.

Anthony Purcell serves as the assistant director for the Southgate Food Processing Center. In his role, he oversees the team that supplies the raw ingredients for Virginia Tech’s award-winning dining centers. He’s also a key collaborator of the Dining Services Farm at Kentland. Prior to this role, Anthony served with Personal Touch Catering for nearly 15 years.

We’ll let his nomination speak for itself:

“The true depth of a person’s civility is gauged by his words and actions, not during times of tranquility but during moments of difficulty. Civility is the commitment to respect and compassion despite interpersonal differences when addressing a challenge.

“For Anthony Purcell, however, civility is not merely a tool of social influence, but an expression of his character and an outpouring of his values. Having been a colleague of his for two years, I believe Anthony’s exceptional dedication to civility is a cornerstone of his success as a leader in Dining Services.

“Anthony’s many pivotal responsibilities confront him with daily communication challenges with staff, managers, chefs, and administrators. From my personal interactions with Anthony and observations of his rapport with others, I have witnessed the impact of Anthony’s civility as such: through his kindness and compassion, people feel the respect that empowers them to speak openly and contribute as an equal member of the team.

“As a leader, Anthony takes responsibility for insuring that proactive steps are taken to avoid misunderstanding and ensure communication is courteous and respectful. When I present Anthony with a suggestion or concern that impacts others on his team, he makes certain that affected individuals from all levels are invited to participate in the decision-making process. Anthony assumes the role of facilitator rather than authoritarian, encouraging the contribution of each person and setting a positive tone for reaching consensus. When problems emerge due to miscommunication, he applies those same tenets of civility to resolve them.

“Anthony prioritizes finding a solution over assigning blame, honoring everyone’s capacity to learn from his or her mistakes and grow. Always generous with his time, Anthony will not hesitate to make a personal phone call to assure me that he understands my concerns, is actively working to find a solution, and appreciates my dedication to the job.

“Anthony’s devotion toward the well-being of his staff has inspired a culture of civility within the Southgate Center. By his example, the staff members seek understanding first when resolving a challenge, taking as much time as necessary to understand each person’s point of view. Anthony frequently and openly expresses his respect and gratitude for their hard work and initiative.

“And, he is the first to capitalize on an opportunity to add some light-hearted humor to a situation, yet he always maintains an appropriate level of professionalism. Anthony recognizes the important roles and unique skills of each of his staff members and never derides or disregards them. I have heard directly from several individuals that his personable and approachable nature makes them comfortable expressing their concerns or seeking his input.”

This nomination says it all. Anthony, you are respected by your staff for such obvious reasons. You lead with humility and kindness, and you embody this Aspiration. It is my absolute honor to present the Aspire! Award for CIVILITY to Anthony Purcell.

(By the way, if you find yourself in the bake shop at just the right time, Anthony’s known to sneak you a freshly-baked cookie. Talk about civility….)

2017-2018 Aspirations Breakfasts*

February 23, 2018
Owens Banquet Room, 8-10 a.m.

*Registration is required to attend the Breakfast.

Aspire! Awards History

Past Recipients

December 1, 2017 Recipients

DeAngelo Haynes - Curiosity
Hadley Carter - Self-Understanding and Integrity
Nick McDaniel - Civility
Stephanie Lemus-Ortiz - Courageous Leadership
Noah Jennings - Ut Prosim

Chris Wise – Self-Understanding and Integrity

October 27, 2017 Recipients

Jordan Kuhn - Curiosity
Joseph Walker - Self-Understanding and Integrity
Harley Curran - Civility
Fahad Ashraf - Courageous Leadership
Julia Monroe - Ut Prosim

Laurie Fritsch – Curiosity

April 21, 2017 Recipients

Bobby Hollingsworth - Curiosity
Annemarie Bresson - Self-Understanding and Integrity
Christopher Bardo - Civility
Nala Chehade - Courageous Leadership
Elizabeth Galbreath - Ut Prosim

Hillary KovacsUt Prosim

Robert and Kara JuliusUt Prosim
Jerry Colyer [posthumous award] – Ut Prosim

March 17, 2017 Recipients

Mitch Clements - Curiosity
Samantha Nichole DiBiaso - Self-Understanding and Integrity
Maria Jernigan - Civility
Manjot Kaur - Courageous Leadership
Stephen Pistoia, Jr. - Ut Prosim

Lt. Tony Haga – Courageous Leadership

February 17, 2017 Recipients

Danielle Jeffers - Curiosity
Colleen McGovern - Self-Understanding and Integrity
Min Kyung “Julie” Sim - Civility
Lamont “Gucci” Livingston - Courageous Leadership
Jacob Long - Ut Prosim

Alece Alderson – Civility

November 4, 2016 Recipients

Rhiannon Hasenauer - Ut Prosim
Zack Sever - Civility
David Gardner - Courageous Leadership
Zachary Hoopes - Curiosity
Bridger Johnson - Self-Understanding and Integrity

Jon Fritsch – Self-Understanding and Integrity

October 7, 2016 Recipients

Zachariah Ewen - Ut Prosim
Jordan Evans - Civility
Megan Lee Myklegard - Courageous Leadership
Alex Hamilton - Curiosity
Bryan Faulkner - Self-Understanding and Integrity

Catherine Cotrupi – Curiosity

April 22, 2016 Recipients
Samantha Hall - Ut Prosim
Charelle Berry - Civility
Audrey Semel - Courageous
Jess King - Curiosity
Mike Schoka - Self-Understanding
and Integrity

Frances KeeneUt Prosim

John GrahamUt Prosim

March 18, 2016 Recipients
Joe Frazier – Civility
Nina Miller – Self-Understanding
and Integrity
Jacob Rosenthal – Curiosity
Haley BurgessUt Prosim
Tanushri Shankar – Courageous

Susan Anderson – Courageous

February 19, 2016 Recipients
Javier González-Rocha – Self-Understanding and Integrity
Obaid Rehman – Civility
Claire Kelling – Courageous
Meghan McLoughlinUt Prosim
Erica Nagotko – Curiosity

Anthony Purcell – Civility

November 13, 2015 Recipients
Kelsi Faley – Self-Understanding
and Integrity
Nivedha Balan – Civility
Rachel Cotton – Courageous
Ryan HopkinsUt Prosim
Caroline Amodeo – Curiosity

Gladys Sartin– Self-Understanding
and Integrity

October 2, 2015 Recipients
Walter Gonsiewski – Self-Understanding
and Integrity
Seyi Olusina – Civility
Skyler Mueller – Courageous
Anastasia MatusiewiczUt Prosim
Natasha Laramie – Curiosity

Vera Kidd – Curiosity

April, 2015 Recipients
Ankit Saigal – Curiosity
Baker Martin – Courageous
Nicole Selz
Self-Understanding and Integrity
Brett MontagueUt Prosim
Conor Cosgrove – Civility

Residence Life Resource Officer John TarterUt Prosim

Robby MoserUt Prosim

March, 2015 Recipients
Juan de la Rosa Diaz – Courageous
Jamaica Sykes – Curiosity
Luke Birch
Self-Understanding and Integrity
Jake VoorheesUt Prosim
Turki Saad Al-Zahrani – Civility

Captain Jim Snyder – Courageous Leadership

February, 2015 Recipients
Catherine Goggins – Courageous
Allison Laclede – Curiosity
Samuel Aguilar Chavez
Self-Understanding and Integrity
Larissa PeraraUt Prosim
Lauren Cashman – Civility

Jay Read – Civility

November 14, 2014 Recipients
Andrew George – – Courageous
Esther Moon – Curiosity
Kaleigh Leal – Self-Understanding
and Integrity
Stephen Bennett Ut Prosim
Philip Norman – Civility

Scott Busiel – Self–understanding and Integrity

October 3, 2014 Recipients
Patrick AckerUt Prosim
Ethan Poole – Civility
Danielle Smalls – Courageous
Emily Neer – Curiosity
Austin Dickey – Self-Understanding
and Integrity

Robin Boucher – Curiosity

April 25, 2014 Recipients
Brent AshleyUt Prosim
Anna Isserow – Civility
Daniel Evans – Courageous
Jacalyn Polis – Curiosity
Neal Moriconi – Self-Understanding
and Integrity

Tricia SmithUt Prosim

March 21, 2014 Recipients
Meredith Cahill
Natasha Chadha
Wes Williams
Emma Cohen
Emily Blair

Belinda Pauley

February 21, 2014 Recipients
Meghan Gilliam
Steven Gethard
Kylie Gilbert
Ashley Taylor
Emily Brown

Kelley Woods-Johnson

November 8, 2013 Recipients
Jordan Disney
Kelly Berry
Daniel Pierce-Parra
Anusha Rizvi
Camryn Sorg

Lyndsy Manz

October 11, 2013 Recipients
Rob Grimm
John Turbyfill
Brendan Craig
Thomas Friss
Chris Atkins

Meredith Hampton