Two UI staff members have been recognized by the Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns for their "unwavering support of lesbian, gay and bisexual students, faculty and staff." Deborah Richie, sexuality educator at McKinley Health Center, and William Riley, dean of students, received the office's Distinguished Ally Award during the campus's recent celebration of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Awareness Week. The awards program is not directly affiliated with the UI Counseling Center's ALLY program, although both promote similar goals. Jim Lee-VanPatten, director of the Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns, said "ally" is a universal term that applies to "people who understand how difficult society can make the lives of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people, and who confront the bigotry, hatred and ignorance" faced by these individuals. Here at the UI, "an Ally is a person, usually heterosexual, who at the very least affirms the university's non-discrimination policy that calls for equal treatment for everyone in all programs and activities," he added. Richie was honored for her coordination of AIDS Awareness Week activities, as well as for her "understanding of the bias toward heterosexuality in language and society and her constant participation in Ally workshops sponsored by Student Affairs and the Counseling Center." Riley was cited for "his directness and decisiveness in addressing harassment and discrimination against lesbian, gay and bisexual students" and for his efforts to encourage students in his graduate seminars to explore lesbian, gay and bisexual issues."