Brian Nussbaum, Desktop Support and Help Desk Manager at the UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS), received the 2016 UNC Information Technology Award at the Carolina Technology Consultants retreat on October 14. The awards are given to individuals and teams to recognize outstanding technical support on campus.
Nussbaum’s colleagues at SILS were not surprised to hear he had received the honor. Many staff and faculty members can readily cite instances where Nussbaum has promptly resolved an issue or found a creative solution to a difficult problem.
“You can never find Brian at his desk–he’s always out helping folks,” said SILS Front Desk Coordinator Maggie Hite. “But you can always find him if you need help. You can always find him if you need a system broken down and completely rebuilt. You can always find him when you need desktop support. You can always find him when everything in the building needs to be repaired and rewired. I once asked him, ‘What haven’t you wired?’ His response? ‘Teeth!’ And that’s the other thing, without fail, you will always find him in a good mood, full of humor and possessing whatever expertise you need to deal with your crisis.”
SILS Assistant Dean of Administration Tammy Cox said she greatly values Nussbaum’s accessibility, noting that he promptly replies to messages, even those sent outside of normal working hours. “Additionally, he explains the actions that he is taking to accomplish a goal,” Cox said. “Though I may not understand it, I appreciate being walked through the process.”
Carolina Health Informatics Program Coordinator Larisa Rodgers credits Nussbaum for providing exceptional service on many different levels. “Due to my role, I have to be highly mobile on campus and off, and I have multiple offices I use daily. Brian has kept all these places running for me and responds very quickly whenever there is an issue,” Rodgers said. “I have had some complicated problems, and he has approached solving them with a tenacity that is an example for us all. He does this while keeping me informed of what he’s doing, when and why. He is able to explain things in a way that I will understand them, even though I do not have a technical background.”
SILS Human Resources Consultant Joey Landry said he appreciates how committed Nussbaum is to understanding first the context in which people are trying to tackle a problem. With this knowledge in hand, he works toward the most effective solution possible. Landry shared, “What I enjoy most about working with Brian is that he ‘shows up.’ If there is a challenge, he doesn’t drag it out over email. He simply gets up, comes to wherever the problem is, empathizes with the challenges of the circumstance, and then positively works toward getting it resolved.”
Nussbaum joined the SILS staff in 2015. Along with providing personal computing support for SILS faculty, staff, and students, he is responsible for technical and analytical assistance in support of computing needs as they pertain to academic, research, and administrative activities. He also provides training in operating systems and applications and oversee the moving and changing equipment. Nussbaum had previously worked for UNC ITS, the UNC Computer Repair Center and Dispatch Services, and Intrex Computers. He is a Lenovo and Apple Certified Technician, and has A+, Network+, and MCP certifications. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer information from Lees McRae College.