Kelli Howell, administrative support associate in the College of Education’s Learning Resources Center, has been named a Spirit of Excellence winner by the Auburn University Office of Human Resources. Howell came to the LRC in August of 2014.
“I was born in Alabaster in Shelby County,” Howell said. “It’s booming now as a suburb of Birmingham but back then it was just a tiny town. My stepfather’s job took him to lots of places so we moved around quite a bit before I settled in Opelika in 1985.”
Her family has deep roots in the area. Howell and her husband, who is a plant operations supervisor on campus, have a small farm outside of Opelika. Her late mother and step-father lived in town, and her husband’s extended family are all from nearby Hurtsboro.
“It’s very peaceful there,” she said. “We sit on the back porch on weekends and realize how blessed we are.”
Family is important to Howell, who has two daughters, a bonus daughter and three grandchildren who live in the area. Her only son is in Texas with a demanding job in the Texas Tech University healthcare system, “but we hope he can move back here someday.” Howell’s younger sister lives with her, as well.
As the LRC’s office administrator, Howell handles the unit’s financial and human resource functions. Susan Bannon, LRC director said, “Kelli is a super star LRC Team member! I enjoy working with her because of her positive attitude and willingness to accept new job responsibilities and opportunities. When we began alternative work operations in March 2020, Kelli was a leader with adopting and using apps and to continue doing her work. She works well with the LRC Team members because she accepts innovations and changes in the work place.”
For Howell, the feeling is mutual.
“I love my job in the LRC!” she said. “The atmosphere is one of cooperation and collaboration. Our director, Dr. Susan Bannon, allows everyone to do their job, and runs a very stable ship. Our professionals do so much to help so many people in the college that there is never a dull moment. I love the people I work with and respect their diverse talents. Everyone gets along well, enjoys their work, and really just seeks to serve our students, staff, and faculty members. If you have worked in different places you can really appreciate it. I feel fortunate every day to be here.”