Replacing two respected seats

Temple looks to fill the positions of Steven Shedrick and Patricia Williams after their recent deaths.

The office of former employee Patricia Williams, who was found dead Feb. 8, will be filled in the near future. | MARGO REED TTN

University officials are beginning their search to replace two employees who were found dead on Main Campus during the past four weeks.

Patricia Williams, 64, died in her office on the 9th floor of Gladfelter Hall Feb. 8. Steven Shedrick, 58, was found dead in his car Jan. 28 on Montgomery Avenue near Broad Street. Both were considered valuable to their departments, colleagues said.

Williams was an administrative coordinator for the history department. She had been working at the university since 1968, five years before Anderson and Gladfelter halls had been constructed, Kevin Glass, a senior vice dean of the College of Liberal Arts, said in an email.

“She knew the history of History,” Glass said.

“Pat did a little bit of everything,” said Jay Lockenour, chair of the history department. “Soon after she passed, it occurred to me that she did everything and she did it in a way that I never heard about it.”

Lockenour added Williams had a “knowledge of the institution” and “knew how to get things done.”

Annette Bakley, another senior vice dean in CLA, said Williams’ responsibilities included working with chairpersons, scheduling classes, financial management, training other coordinators and secretaries, arranging parking, helping students in the graduation process, answering phones, filing paperwork and working with graduate student admissions.

“[The history department] really grew dependent on her,” Bakley said.

The size of the history department could account for the exhaustive list of duties of an administrative coordinator, Bakley added. According to the department’s website, there are more than 40 faculty members, 400 history majors and 100 graduate students.

Finding someone with Williams’ level of training and knowledge of the university will be challenging, officials said.

Bakley said qualities like a go-getter personality, willing to go the extra mile and being well-spoken are important in fulfilling the role. A bachelor of arts degree is also preferred, as it indicates a higher level of training.

Friendliness, competence and organization are also valuable qualities, Lockenour said.

“[The history department] is looking for someone who has the sense that the students are the reason why we’re here and wants to make Temple a better place,” Bakley added.

An administrative coordinator or someone in a similar position from a smaller department may move into the history department as “lateral move,” which may be the precursor to a promotion, Bakley said. Some of the duties Williams had will also be moved on to other people in the department.

Shedrick was an employee for more than 30 years and the copy center operator in the Digital Print Center in Wachman Hall. He was committed to his work, his church and his family.

Barbara Shedrick said some of her brother’s responsibilities in the Digital Print Center were printing mass orders of advertising for university athletics, printing exams for professors and photocopying sold-out textbooks that students could purchase.

Additional responsibilities included operating Xerox machines, handling recruitment and retention information that was sent out of the university, dealing with customers in person as well as over the phone and helping to run retail in the print center, said Steve Gallagher, operations manager of Digital Document Services.

Customer service was important to him and he loved helping students, Barbara Shedrick said.

“He gave everybody a smile,” she said. “Most of the time he was the one people came to. … He had a good rapport with all the people in the building. They knew if they sent an order to him, he could get it done by lunch time.”

In his free time, Shedrick enjoyed fishing, football and spending time with his family. His “most rewarding accomplishment” was becoming the deacon of the New Central Baptist Church on 2139 Lombard St., Barbara Shedrick said.

Filling Shedrick’s position will require “going through the normal process,” Gallagher said. This includes posting the job information to bulletin boards around the university and to the Human Resources website.The position will also be advertised within the 1199C Union District, for which Shedrick was a representative.

Gallagher added that a background in graphic arts and a similar dedication to customer service is needed.

“Steve was very personable,“ Gallagher said. “He was always thinking of other people. … He was an all-around good guy.”

Lian Parsons can be reached at or on Twitter @Lian_Parsons.

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