Sunny Shines In Her Pivotal Roles at NIH CSR



Anytime a peer recognizes the value of a colleague’s work, it is a high honor. Center for Scientific Review (CSR) Administrative Support Specialist Adebimibola Adebona (Ranti) is so proud of her team member Sunipilas (Sunny) Payaggapandha, Administrative Assistant (AA) with the Population Sciences and Epidemiology (PSE) IRG within CSR.

Sunny has been part of the team since 2017 and according to Ranti, has left an indelible mark of service and a willingness to pitch in whenever her team has a need she can fill.


When asked about her colleague, Ranti glowingly said, “When her group was short-staffed, Sunny happily learned Extramural Support Assistant (ESA) work to help her group run their meetings. While still learning and getting the hang of these new tasks, there was a different Integrated Review Groups (IRG) that lost their AA. Sunny helped cover that group by providing AA duties for them until their new AA was on-boarded, then went above and beyond to train the new AA for that group.”


ESA duties include preparing documents for one to two-day intensive meetings (now virtual) to examine large numbers of applications for CSR grant funding.


Sunny admits: “it’s a lot of work for an AA, but I never say no. Doing both jobs (AA and ESA) allows me to learn a lot. You need to know how to multitask and manage your time.”


Her background has prepared her well for her present tasks. As a young woman, her father pushed her out of the comforts of their home in Thailand, believing that his daughter needed to come to the US in order to grow up. Once her feet hit the shore, she worked as an au pair, then got a job at the Marriott Hotel, climbing the ladder from front desk to sales to purchasing. She eventually made her way to DSFederal’s CSR team and quickly carved her path as the team member willing to help out in whatever way she can.


Her advice to all of us? “You need to be patient and try to understand people. People are different. Some are difficult. Try to learn them, too. The more you understand people, the better. Be yourself.”


But teamwork isn’t all this busy bee is known for. “She also sets up some AMAZING happy hours!” said Ranti.