I'm Rand's number one fan! I think it was a great shame that they didn't want to keep the character around for a few episodes per season (although we can't know if it would have affected Grace's decline due to alcoholism) but the majority of episodes featuring yeomen were in season one in any event. I think it's a wonderful story to hear that she was inspired to quit drinking by Star Trek fans.
I've included Rand as one of the main supporting cast in my cheesy Star Trek motion comic. I think she makes a great everyman, asking dumb questions to help the audience but more than that, Grace gave her a personality that could sparkle when the character was given some meaty scenes.
I'm more annoyed that the reboot hasn't felt able to include the character, since she is probably the one woman who doesn't need an excuse to be tagging along with the captain.