CUIT Delivers for President Obama

While President Obama was addressing Barnard students at last month's graduation ceremony, the White House was heaping praise on Columbia University Information Technology (CUIT) and the department’s role in the live stream of the President’s speech. 

President Obama Address Barnard CollegeCUIT’s live stream of President Obama’s May 14th address to students, families and guests on Columbia’s South Lawn was so clear and problem-free that the White House decided to use it as its own feed, instead of the pre-planned broadcast from the White House’s equipment.

For their top-notch assistance to President Obama, White House Staff and the United States Secret Service, CUIT staffers Daniel Dykema, Ken Kotala, Patrick Rausch, Shenetta Richardson, Thomas Rom, and Richard Trujillo were recognized by the White House Communications Agency (WHCA) and given certificates of appreciation.

The pre-planning and logistical considerations required to support a presidential appearance are always considerable, and the CUIT team leapt into action to provide the specialized communications connections required by White House staff and Secret Service personnel. On very short notice, the team employed their extensive knowledge of the University’s systems to facilitate the critical and oftentimes complex communications requests from the White House. The CUIT was also recognized for their troubleshooting skills.

Candace Fleming, vice president of CUIT, said, “The team came together and provided the superior customer service they always strive for. It's always nice to get recognition for our hard work, but when it comes from the White House, it’s even more special."

By Tracy Parker
Photo by Eleanor Templeton