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CHHS’s Montague Named Employee Of The Month

Published: February 15, 2011

Jill Montague (c) with co-workers from the College of Health and Human Services.

Jill Montague, an administrative coordinator in the College of Health and Human Services since 2001, was chosen recently by her colleagues to be employee of the month.

The mother of CSULB Electrical Engineering major Jake Rice and Millikan High School senior Sarah Rice was recognized in a special ceremony held near the University Student Union on Friendship Walk, which was renamed Jill Montague Lane for the month.

CSULB President F. King Alexander praised Montague for her professionalism, positive attitude and ability to build strong relationships with faculty, staff and students. “Jill has excellent customer service skills and always goes the extra mile to assist others,” he said.

Montague was pleased to be named employee of the month. “When I saw the list of nominees, I knew I didn’t stand a chance, so I was shocked when I found out that I had been selected,” she said. “I felt honored just to be nominated. I just work quietly behind the scenes and try to be helpful whenever I can. It’s great to know that my efforts are appreciated.”

Montague feels one reason for her recognition is her goal of doing her best to help people. “I would say I’m a pretty diligent worker,” she said, “and I try to have a good working relationship with everybody I deal with. I am pretty reliable too. I am always at my desk. One of the college’s former deans used to kid me about being tied to a ball and chain at my desk. When people call me, I am almost always there, and I always answer my phone.”

Among other duties, her responsibilities as an administrative coordinator include processing the college’s fiscal documents such as hospitality forms, travel authorizations and claims, purchase order requests and Foundation payroll documents.

“I mainly handle the restricted expenditures that are charging Foundation accounts, and I pride myself on my accuracy and attention to detail,” she said. “Basically, what I do is check the paperwork to make sure it is complete, accurate and in compliance with CSULB guidelines for policies and procedures. When I find a problem with the paperwork, I contact people and work with them to resolve the issues. When I pass this paperwork on to our ASM, it is ready to be signed.”

Montague has enjoyed the opportunity to grow in her job. “I have remained in the same position, but I have been reclassified a couple of times,” she said. “I feel that my skill set includes the ability to interpret university policies and apply them to the paperwork to make sure everything is in compliance. One of my colleagues once referred to me as ‘the audit police.’ Another important skill, she feels, is her problem-solving ability. “When problems arise, I troubleshoot,” she said. “I answer a lot of questions for people who call, and I take pride in providing good customer service. I can create a pretty nice spreadsheet and compose professional correspondence as well.”

Jill Montague with CSULB President F. King Alexander.

Montague believes one of the best parts of her job is the people. “I have a nice office with a wonderful group of people to work with,” she said. “They are like my family, and the dean’s office is like my home away from home. I have made many friendships by just talking to department coordinators, faculty members and Foundation staff over the phone.”

Montague earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from UC Davis and a paralegal certificate from UCLA Extension. After working for 13 years in a law firm, she is pleased with her decision to work at a university and encourages others to think about it.

“CSULB is a beautiful campus, vibrant at times and peaceful at times, depending on the time of year. I enjoy any excuse to walk across campus just because it is such an uplifting environment,” she said. “There are also a lot of opportunities to see some great entertainment and sporting events here.”

Montague received several gifts with her recognition, including a CSULB sweatshirt, a $25 gift certificate to Domenico’s Pizza, gift certificates for two Tommy’s World Famous Hamburgers, a $25 Beach Club gift card and a gift card for a Whopper at Burger King.

–Richard Manly