November 9, 2022 | Erin Bluvas, firstname.lastname@example.org
“I like feeling like I’m part of a bigger picture – that what I am doing with my time matters,” says Charlotte Stalvey. “When I see grant awards coming through, I know I have played a very small but important role in helping to make the world a better place.”
A key member of the Arnold School’s Office of Research since 2013, her role grew even bigger when she was named Director last month. Nine years ago, Stalvey came to USC as a grants coordinator, and she has made her mark not only on the Arnold School but on the broader university as well.
“Ms. Stalvey continues to grow and improve each year,” says Alan Decho, Associate Dean for Research. “She has a very good eye for detecting flaws during proposal preparation coupled with a pleasant personality. This is crucial for interacting with investigators and has improved our success and funding of competitive proposals. Our school’s research efforts have been climbing each year, in part, due to the focused efforts of leaders like Ms. Stalvey.”
South Carolina born and raised, Stalvey has lived in the Midlands area for nearly four decades. With her very first job, she quickly learned that her professional career would often entail going above and beyond her position description – as evidenced when the then-project manager learned how to operate a forklift to load/unload trucks while working for Trane.
I’m an optimist and believe in the power of positive thinking. I generally choose happiness, I smile a lot, and I love to laugh loud. My glass is always filling back up.
-Charlotte Stalvey, director for the Office of Research
Stalvey went above and beyond in the evenings as well, completing a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Limestone College and becoming the first member of her family to earn a four-year degree. After eight years at Trane, she worked in administrative and business development roles at Diversified Computer Solutions and then the South Carolina Department of Education.
“I’ll never forget my first day,” Stalvey says of starting work at USC. “We had a bomb scare, and the entire building was evacuated for about two hours. It turned out to be a box of nails that had fallen off a maintenance truck’s bumper in the street.”
Things have gone more smoothly since then, but they’ve continued to be exciting. Each year, Stalvey helps Arnold School researchers apply for grants, which included nearly 450 proposals that brought in more than $47 million, a USC record in funding, during fiscal year 2022. Her part involves ensuring that the grant process is running smoothly by working with grant coordinators, principal investigators and USC’s Sponsored Awards Management (SAM) administrators.
“We are set up differently from other colleges in that we have an extra layer of proposal review,” she says. “I thoroughly review and sign for the school-level approval on the proposals before they go to SAM for submission.”
The teacher inside Stalvey enjoys training the department coordinators as well as others across USC as an instructor for the Office of the Vice President for Research’s Gamecocks Research Administrators Network Training (GRANT) program. She’s even left her own stamp on it.
“Something that I am very proud of is that I have tinkered and loved and molded our current budget template over my tenure to make it as user friendly and efficient as it can be,” Stalvey says. “It has now been adopted by the university as the official excel budget template.”
Outside of the Arnold School, Stalvey has enrolled in a master’s program (data and communication) and serves as treasurer/activity outing leader for the University Women’s Club. At home, she teaches herself how to paint using YouTube videos and dotes on her niece, nephew, two cats and two dogs.
“I’m an optimist and believe in the power of positive thinking,” Stalvey says of her approach to life. “I generally choose happiness, I smile a lot, and I love to laugh loud. My glass is always filling back up.”
The Staff Spotlight Series is sponsored by the Arnold School's Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.