Meet this week’s Centennial Stars

Two staffers work hard to make Rice run more smoothly

To celebrate the Rice Centennial, this year the university will honor 100 staff members who represent the best of Rice culture. Each week, two Centennial Stars will be recognized for their contributions to excellence, and we’ll introduce them in Rice News.

This week’s Centennial Stars were nominated for their commitment to making Rice run smoothly and effectively. They are Danny Eaton, senior network architect in Information Technology, and Susann Glenn, communications manager in Facilities, Engineering and Planning (FE&P) and Housing and Dining (H&D).

Eaton has been in the Network Design and Administration area in IT since he came to Rice in 2005.

“Danny has demonstrated a consistent commitment to the campus in working to ensure that all of the services he touches are of the highest quality and that his customers receive careful attention,” said the letter nominating Eaton.

As technology has advanced, Eaton has worked to improve and update the university’s infrastructure and services. “His role in helping build and maintain a drama-free network is considerable,” the letter said.

Danny Eaton

Danny Eaton

“Seven years ago, we had very limited campus wireless,” it said. “Today, under Danny’s tenure, we’re now serving over 7,800 simultaneously active wireless devices.”

Eaton’s involvement at Rice goes beyond his job description. While his technical work is “clearly making Rice a better place,” the letter said, Eaton’s other contributions to Rice make the university better for staff and students.

Eaton is an associate at Jones College, and he has been active on the Staff Advisory Committee since 2010; he’s now the co-chairman of the Employee Activities subcommittee. He is also involved in the IT Employee Activities Committee and contributes ideas and devotes his time to making departmental events a success.

“Danny is always welcoming and friendly with customers and vendors at Rice,” his nomination said. “He treats everyone with respect, he provides opportunities for newcomers to engage and he looks for ways to help more people experience the great aspects of Rice’s culture.”

Glenn initially came to Rice in 2001 as a temporary administrative assistant in Information Technology. A few months later she was transferred to FE&P, where she served as department coordinator until she left Rice in 2004. Glenn returned to the university in 2007 as communications manager in FE&P. In 2010, she received the Distinguished Employee Award for her effective, passionate work performance.

Susann Glenn

Susann Glenn

And in recent months, she has added Housing and Dining communications to her workload.

“Every single day, Susann creates connections between the administration and Rice’s students,” said the letter nominating Glenn. “She deftly handles critical conversations about competing priorities and presents Rice in the best manner possible.”

Glenn’s enthusiasm and communication skills have helped FE&P and Rice navigate through an aggressive and unprecedented growth period, the letter said. “Her positive attitude, commitment to service and freshly baked cookies (to smooth hard conversations) are legendary.”

Glenn is deeply involved in student life. She’s an active associate at Duncan College, and she only recently stepped down from her role as president of the High Order of the Owl Tailgating Society (HOOTS), the group that hosts tailgate parties and other events to raise money for scholarships for FE&P and H&D employees and their families. Glenn also has developed several creative programs designed to engage students, the letter said, including the monthly tunnel tours program, which allows students, faculty and staff members to explore the steam tunnels that run beneath the campus.

To nominate someone as a Centennial Star, go to For more information, contact Rebecca Millet at

To view previous Centennial Stars, visit


About Alyson Ward

Alyson Ward is a writer in Public Affairs at Rice University.