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1st Annual BMB Airing of Gratitudes

Date Posted: Thursday, January 13, 2022

For the first time ever, BMB’s Associate Professor Brian Kelch hosted the Airing of our Gratitudes immediately following his long standing tradition of our Airing of Grievances. All members of the department were encouraged to reflect and share what they were grateful for as 2021 was coming to a close. The response was overwhelming reminding us that we really do have a lot to be thankful for even during these uncertain times. The compiled list can be found here or you can view below.


What is your Gratitude?  Do you want to remain anonymous?
all our faculty are wonderful, no grinches in sight  Yes, I will remain anonymous
Amazing creative colleagues!   Yes, I will remain anonymous
Best thing to come out of quarantine: my quarantine kitty! She brings me joy everyday :) Yes, I will remain anonymous
Brian Kelch for being a cheery force for social cohesion in the department Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for being a part of such a great department that treats each other as family! Thankful for all the staff, faculty, students, and postdocs for spreading kindness and cheer throughout the year.  Michelle
Grateful to Pfizer - for both the vaccine and the new drug.  Yes, I will remain anonymous
Thankful to the person who donated the Steinway to the school...  Yes, I will remain anonymous
We have the best faculty at UMASS! Everyone deeply cares about student well-being and sucess! Thank you for being amazing role models! Yes, I will remain anonymous
Grateful to coffee, and Armeno for roasting great coffee...  Nese
Whoever got me the bacon socks: thank you. You know me well and are such a thoughtful person. Love it.

And I just checked: my other bacon socks are slightly different! So now I can mix and match.

You da best, Secret Santa!
Brian Kelch
I am thankful for Sarah Z. and her smart ass comments.  They keep me laughing.   Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am thankful for the Gen Z-ers in my lab.  They keep me up-to-date and feeling young.  Recently, they taught me that I can simply download more ram if I'm experiencing computer slowdown.  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for DENISE SILVA. Denise is a wealth of knowledge and the processor of all forms behind the scenes that makes this department function. In addition to her "regular" job, Denise has set up the POs for every new piece of equipment we have purchased this year, submitted invoices for payment, and constantly asks if there is more she can do to help. Denise is an amazing asset to our administrative team and our BMB department.  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I'm grateful for Edna. She does a fantastic job keeping our labs running smoothly and her cheery attitude ALWAYS brightens my day. I can tell she's got that smile behind her mask. Thanks Edna! Brian Kelch
I am grateful for LUCA LEONE. During the past year, Luca has done his "regular" day job and served as our department's essential personnel during a pandemic. He then coordinated and continues to coordinate the new equipment that the department is getting, has transferred in 2 newly recruited labs, and is reconfiguring space needs for our new Chair. Luca's willingness to help and address every crisis that pops up suddenly is what makes him such a great asset to our department. Thanks Luca for all of your hard work!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I'm thankful for Karen Welch. She always makes me laugh and we can just shoot the shit forever. She keeps me in line when I step on it or over it (I'm a habitual line-stepper), and, even though she's a Pats fan, we can talk sports. Thanks Karen! BK
I am grateful for EDNA FROIO. For those of you who don't know Edna - you are missing out! Edna is one of the kindest and hard working people I have ever met. Her enthusiasm for her job and her great personality make her one of the BMB unsung heroines. Enda's smile is contagious and we all appreciate the work she does in supporting our labs each and every day. Thanks Edna!! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I love that every year, Jackie listens to grievances and watches for actionable concerns that she can pass on to people in power at the university. Thank you, Jackie! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I'm super thankful that I have somehow lucked into having the best people in my lab. I honestly don't know how that happened.

But ya'll make me so happy and proud to work with you. Super smart and hard-working, but more importantly, every single one of you is a great person who makes coming to work a joy. I'm severely indebted to all of you. Thank you to the members of the Kelch Lab.
I'm grateful to Sean Ryder. He's fucking hilarious, but also wise in a way that I aspire to (but will never achieve). Having lunch with him is like having dining with the love child of George Carlin and the Dalia Lama, if that love child was born with a wrench in one hand and a guitar in the other. Thanks for being you, Sean. BK
The beautiful views we have from the eighth and ninth floors! Yes, I will remain anonymous
Luca. There's a ton that Luca is doing behind the scenes to make everything happen. He's constantly putting out fires, both big and small. And does it with a cheery attitude. Thanks dude! (I will forgive you for being a Giants fan. Go Eagles!) BK
I am super grateful to Brian for organizing a holiday event every year. And for being an all around outstanding colleague. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful to the students, post-docs, and staff for cranking away in the lab despite difficult working conditions caused by the pandemic. Sean
My mid-day walks to drop off my CoVID test each week and get some fresh air! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am very grateful to have worked with BettyAnn Hoyt for the last (almost) 19 years!  We started as Newbies in the department.  She was hired the beginning of March, I came in the end of April!  We developed a great friendship.  We were both single parents when we met.  We watched each other's kids grow up and have kids of their own. I will miss her when she retires the end of January but we will remain friends always!! I do not need to be anonymous.
I am grateful for Menna completing her Ph.D. research and starting an awesome post-doctoral position in the Artandi lab at Stanford. Sean
I am 100% grateful to the vaccine developers, epidemiologists, small molecule screeners, protein engineers, and virologists for their tireless work and dedication in trying to restore some sort of normalcy to life. Sean
I am grateful to all of our department staff for going to extraordinary lengths to keep the research enterprise alive over the past two years. Sean
The shuttles!! Especially on cold/rainy nights Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for the people I have gotten to meet and the friendships I have formed in BMB. There have been faculty who have mentored me, students who have taught me and postdocs who have informed me of the world outside of UMMS and Massachusetts. There are staff that I consider friends and close confidants in all aspects of my life. The tight knit community that is BMB makes coming to work and doing my job everyday fulfilling. Thanks to you all!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for KAREN WELCH. From the moment I met Karen she was and has continued to be the friendly face of BMB. Karen is always willing to help anyone and provide support to the Chair and the entire department. Karen's can-do attitude and love of all things BMB make her so special and a JOY to work with.  Yes, I will remain anonymous
Vaccines & booster shots! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for NINA MAILLET. As the newest administrative member to our team, Nina's eagerness to learn and help in any way possible is refreshing and motivating. Talking and getting to know Nina is such a pleasure. I am so glad Nina chose to be part of our BMB team   - we are incredibly lucky to have her!! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful that BRIAN KELCH made this gratitude box this year! It is really nice reflecting on all of the positive things I like about my job (mostly the people!) and I cannot wait to see all of the things others in our department are grateful for. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for our new Chair - CELIA SCHIFFER. I am very much looking forward to her leadership and new vision of enabling and empowering science.  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am extremely grateful for SHARON KERSHAW. Sharon is the behind the scenes employee who updates our BMB website regularly. Sharon has a unique skill set that often goes unrecognized, however, without Sharon our website would be outdated and boring. Huge thank you to Sharon who regularly just takes emails sent to her and performs magic to make them appear on the website!!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I appreciate that I work in a department committed to cultivating a community that is inclusive and helps all feel a sense of belonging - even if we have our own blindspots and areas for growth. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am excited about BMB's future under Celia's leadership! Yes, I will remain anonymous
Backgrounds and blurring features in Zoom! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for all of my lab mates who have been patient with training me <3  Joshua Pajak
I am grateful for Edna who is the hardest working person I know! Joshua Pajak
I'm grateful for my colleagues. Every time i've had questions or concerns, I've had plenty of people to talk with me. When I've got depressed or panicky, I've had people to have a drink, sit around the fire, and talk me down (thanks ollie!)
I miss our liquid mentoring sessions, and can't wait for them to resume...
I'm grateful for Celia Schiffer for taking on the mantle of the Chair position and owning it. I'm grateful to have leadership that is thinking outside the box and is open/transparent. I appreciate her mentoring and coaching me through some hard times. Thanks BK
The entire department is grateful for KAREN LEKAS who among other things is the employee behind the weekly BMBTimereporting emails. If you didn't know, Karen processes the payroll for the entire department each week! Since we all appreciate our paychecks, we all appreciate Karen's attention to detail and work on our behalf to ensure there are no issues with this important task.  Thanks Karen!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
New Chair! Yes, I will remain anonymous
Sounds a little sad to say, but I am grateful for zoom, so that we can stay in contact virtually. Yes, I will remain anonymous
Vaccines! Yes, I will remain anonymous
I'm grateful that we are able to work from home when we need to. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am gratful for my family and my loving carring co-workers. I am very gratful for health and happiness and for every day that goes right. Gily
This welcoming department, the people I have met, and kindness you have all shown in my first few months here! I am grateful for all of you. Wendy Kam
I am grateful to have found a home away from home (in India) within my current work space in the BMB division. My journey in the past decade, away from UMMS,  allowed me to evolve and in the process I developed a sense for my priorities as a scientist and a person, which I am also thankful for. However, this holiday season I am grateful for having had the chance to return to UMMS to continue my scientific journey with my PhD mentor Dan McCollum along with some of my other science idols in this division whom I have also known since my grad school years. I look forward to meeting new friends and colleagues in the days ahead. Most importantly, I am most grateful to have found an environment where I feel I belong and can continue to grow , take new chances, make new mistakes and hopefully make pathbreaking discoveries to improve human health and well being. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful to Celia and Jackie for always taking the time to answer my questions and taking the time to mentor and coach me. I am so very blessed to be part of the BMB department. Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful that the capable Professor Schiffer is sitting in the Biochem Chair I wish to remain anonymous but after ruminating decided not to be
Grateful for all the lab personnel who help me when I have questions about why they are using instruments.  Luca
I am grateful that my dad, 87 years young, is still here to celebrate another Christmas with me!   Karen Welch
I work in the best department at the UMMS.  I have the best co-workers at the UMMS.  Thankful every day that I have been blessed to work here for 35+ years.   Karen Welch
I am grateful for SOPHIA GLOGOWSKI. Sophia's attention to detail and willingness to help in any task is greatly appreciated and makes her a true team player and asset to BMB. We are lucky to have Sophia on our Admin team and in our Main Office!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I am grateful for BETTY-ANN HOYT. Betty-Ann is always a friendly face in the Main Office and willing to help with any task that is asked of her. We are lucky to have had Betty-Ann on our team for over 18 years and will be sad to see her retire soon!  Yes, I will remain anonymous
I’m thankful for the bmb office staff (Karen Lekas, Betty Ann Hoyt, Sophia glogowski).  I love that we see you in person now. We missed seeing your cheery faces.  BK
Vaccines & booster shots! Yes, I will remain anonymous