2014 Infinite Mile Award Recipients

Our congratulations and thanks to the recipients of our fourteenth Infinite Mile Awards.

Ann McNamara for Problem Solving and Leadership
Shannon McCord for Public, Customer, or Client Relations
Pamela Nedbalek Fraser for for Public, Customer, or Client Relations
Mary Rowe for Special Recognition


Ann McNamara

Kirk Kolenbrander and Ann McNamara with Ann's award at the Infinite Mile Awards Ceremony.
Patty Austen, Aaron Weinberger, Ann McNamara, Tim Healey, and Kathy LaFargue enjoy the Infinite Mile Awards Ceremony.

Ann McNamara, Executive Director of Finance, Administration & Operations, Office of the President, for Problem Solving and Leadership

Read the award citation

Simply stated, you make the President's Office go. In times of crisis (including an actual flood, though no locusts… yet) you are always the first to jump in, roll up your sleeves and put things right. You are a wearer of many hats and a caretaker of our many needs. You listen and offer support, advice and encouragement when we need it. And you do it all with a gentle touch. You are a collaborative leader who inspires those around you to achieve excellence. While much of your job occurs behind-the-scenes, you stand out as a star. Without fanfare, you exhibit determination, dedication and trustworthiness in all that you do. Your commitment to the President’s Office and to MIT is unwavering. We are grateful to have you on our team.


Top of page


Shannon McCord

Aaron Weinberger accepts the Infinite Mile Award for Shannon McCord.

Shannon McCord, Administrative Assistant II, Office of the President, for Public, Customer or Client Relations

Read the award citation

You handle a demanding, fast-paced, sometimes chaotic work environment with exceptional grace, dependability, organization and effectiveness; your thoroughness makes it hard to believe that you work only part time. Through it all, you are a delightful presence – calm, cheerful, funny, sympathetic and warm. You are unfailingly prompt, responsive and respectful, qualities that help us to sustain strong relationships across the campus and beyond. Your diplomacy and kindness open doors for our office everywhere. Because you consistently go the extra mile – double-checking facts, resolving knotty problems with inventive new solutions, connecting people with the right resources – you have built a broad, resilient network of allies that we count on again and again. The President’s Office could not have a better ambassador.


Top of page


Pamela Nedbalek Fraser

Pamela Nedbalek Fraser at the Infinite Mile Awards Ceremony with Liz Vena, John Fraser, and Jack Fraser.
Kirk Kolenbrander and Pamela Nedbalek Fraser pose with Pamela's Infinite Mile Award.

Pamela Nedbalek Fraser, Corporation Facilitator, Trustee Relations, Office of the Corporation, for Public, Customer, or Client Relations

Read the award citation

Whether you are working with Corporation members, Visiting Committee members, faculty, staff or the Institute’s senior officers, your commitment to serving our community is remarkable. Need an office with a landline for a conference call? A separate car to Logan to make it home for a child’s 7th birthday party? Don’t want to carry those heavy papers back on the plane? “Of course! I’ll take care of it! No problem!” you say cheerfully. You solve problems before they come to a head and anticipate requests before they are even expressed. You are organized and driven with an extraordinary attention to detail. You handle each new challenge and opportunity with an air of grace and elegance. It is truly a pleasure working with you.


Top of page


Mary Rowe

Kirk Kolenbrander extends a special recognition to Mary Rowe.
The Ombuds Office: Toni Robinson, Mary Rowe, and Kate Schenck.

Mary Rowe, Special Assistant to the President & Ombudsperson, Office of the President, Special Recognition

Read the award citation

Because of you, MIT offers a safe haven for those in our community in need of comfort, guidance and answers. You are an innovator. When you arrived at MIT in 1973, you were the first person to approach issues of gender bias and harassment on an institutional level. You created one of the first mentoring programs and internal mediator programs, and you worked tirelessly to establish resources for underrepresented members of our community. Your scholarship in the areas of dispute resolution, micro-affirmations, micro-inequities and bystander behavior has profoundly shaped how society thinks about privilege. For 40 years, you have listened to us. And you have helped us listen to each other, with sympathy, humility, decency, respect and kindness. As you prepare for retirement, we honor you for your contributions and thank you for being our “Ombuddy.”


Top of page