“I really attribute this to my peers who were kind enough to, recognize what I do.” -Jeff Egly
Associate Director Jeff Egly of the Utah Education and Telehealth Network is the 2022 UCET Outstanding Leader of the Year Award winner. The honor was presented March 15, 2022 by the Utah Coalition for Education Technology, a nonprofit group.
“Jeff has an easy way about him,” said UETN CEO Ray Timothy, “but if you need a project completed efficiently and on-time, Jeff and his team will get it done.”
Jeff Egly has always strummed to his own beat. Just like playing the bass or his favorite guitar, Egly’s career has always been about tackling one string at a time.
“I have been at UETN for over 25 years.” Egly explained. “I started out with the microwave crew. I then became the team lead for that — at the time they just referred to it as the straw boss. From there, I became the field operations manager. They, one-by-one, pulled other services under me: application engineering, the operation center and the project managers. And, so, it just, kind of grew over time.”
Recently Egly has been part of UETN’s drive to replace the last remaining microwave links with fiber-optic connections in remote parts of the state. So far, fiber-optic connections have been extended to Wayne and Grand counties in the central part of the state; to Manila and Dutch John in the northeast corner of the state; and is in progress being extended to the Navajo Nation in the southeast corner of the state.
“I’m very fortunate to have worked with Jeff Egly for more than two decades. He was the first person to take me around the state to visit the sites and stakeholders that are served by UETN. He is dedicated and very capable,” said Jim Stewart, UETN’s chief technology officer. “When I need something done, Jeff is always there, willing to take on new assignments, and adding his own talents and insights. UETN is a much better organization because of Jeff. He is a very deserving recipient of this honor.”
Egly is a Utah native — “been here my whole life,” He attended the University of Utah for most his college years but graduated from Weber State University with degrees in Communication and Political Science. Networks were not in mind during college but exposure to electronic based information services and networks in positions after college eventually led me to UETN.
“When I have free time, I usually like to do stuff outdoors, and travel. Anybody who knows me, knows that I love music. I'm a musician and I love playing with long time friends and also meeting new people through music, there's always something that I can learn from them. I’ve worked with some amazing people who have made a positive impact on my life. Anything that I've accomplished here [at UETN] is based on the people I've worked with throughout my time here, some of whom have passed. And, I mean that sincerely, it's all based on people who have a love and commitment to their work that I’ve been fortunate to work alongside and who are willing to work and share their knowledge and experience with me.”
Egly recalled his reaction when he heard he won the UCET award. “I'm greatly humbled because I just know the hard work and dedication of the people around me. And so, I want to make sure that, they're recognized. Any recognition coming to me is based on the company I keep.
He said his leadership style is “collaborative, supportive, to provide guidance as needed and space for both managers and staff — but always available. Everyone's input is important. Maybe my style is ‘inclusive’.”
Jeff Egly’s advice for future leaders is: “Listen! Get out and meet with the people you serve, understand who they are and what they do. Know what we need to do to help them succeed and focus on their successes.”
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