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SDSC's Director of Administration and Operation Receives the "Lifetime Achievement" Award for Excellence in Program Management

Published 04/07/2006

Mary Hart Honored by UCSD Vice Chancellor and Past Award Recipients

"When you need to get something done and there's no one else to turn to, who are you going to call -- Mary Hart." These were the words of praise for Mary Hart, Division Director of Administration and Operations at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), as she received the 2006 Betsy Faught Award at the Chancellor's Complex on the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) campus.

The Betsy Faught Award recognizes university individuals for outstanding achievement in the management of campus academic units. It honors the memory of Betsy Faught, an exceptional MSO (Management Services Officer) in the university's Political Science department for more than 20 years. Traits attributed to awardees include the ability to bring people together, problem-solving skills, sustained creativity, leadership, recognized judgment and integrity. The award program was initiated in 1994 and has since recognized eight other outstanding UCSD leaders.

"Mary inspires confidence and has been a terrific resource for us all," remarked Nancy Hartley in her introduction. Hartley is a UCSD Administrator and was the recipient of the 2003 Betsy Faught Award. "Betsy would be pleased to share this award with her."

UCSD's Vice Chancellor of Research, Richard Attiyeh, who presented the award to Hart, said, "She is a terrific worker and a wonderful person -- this award is well deserved."

In the beginning
"When I started work at UCSD in 1975, I was a 23-year-old single mother with no real work experience," said Hart in her acceptance speech. "I have been enriched by a career at this institution and I can't tell you how much this award means to me. This is the pinnacle of my career."

"When I first came to work at UCSD, I was thrilled to be a part of such an amazing place," explains Hart. "But more than anything, I was absolutely focused and determined to do my best to keep my job."

And keep her job she did. Throughout her 31-year career, Hart has served UCSD in a number of roles. She started in the Office of Graduate Studies and Research and later Hart attained her first business officer position in the Department of Chemistry in 1990.

In 1994, she assumed responsibility as the founding MSO in the Department of Bioengineering, where she oversaw the planning and design of Powell-Focht Hall (the department's building).

Life at the Supercomputer Center
Hart joined SDSC in 2001 where she currently leads and manages the center's business office, human resources activities, as well as the desktop services, web/database and physical facilities groups. In addition, she is skillfully leading SDSC's participation in the design and planning of the center's new building. Hart has also established a strong relationship with the National Science Foundation, the major funding source for SDSC.

"We are exceedingly lucky to have Mary at SDSC," said SDSC Director Fran Berman. "Her management experience and leadership, business acumen and strategic thinking have made an immense difference to the center. This university recognition is a great honor and Mary is an outstanding addition to the impressive list of Betsy Faught awardees."

And beyond
In addition to her departmental roles, Hart has been an active member of the ABA (Academic Business Administrators) and has served on numerous committees and University task forces. In 2000, as a member of the ABA Executive Committee, she co-authored a report on staff morale, which contributed to the establishment of the Staff Retention and Support Steering Committee. Mary is currently a member of the search committee for the Vice Chancellor of Research.

Hart also serves as facilitator for the system-wide Business Officer Institute and is a committee member for the Academic Affairs' Business Officer Academy. This new and innovative staff development program provides training, guidance and support to staff who aspire to become business officers.

For more information on the award, log on to the Betsy Faught Award website.

About SDSC
For more than two decades, the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) has enabled ground-breaking science and engineering discoveries through advances in computational science and high performance computing. A key resource to academia and industry, SDSC provides leadership in Data Cyberinfrastructure, particularly with respect to data curation, management and preservation, data-oriented high-performance computing, and Cyberinfrastructure-enabled science and engineering. SDSC is an organized research unit of the University of California, San Diego and one of the founding sites of NSF's TeraGrid. For more information, see