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Delaware Governor: Jack Markell

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Ann Visalli: Celebrating “Public Service Recognition Week” All Year Long

Written on: May 10th, 2010 in Guest Posts Recognizing State Employees

On a daily basis, our lives are touched by the actions of committed public servants, and I am so proud of the quality of service Delaware state employees provide to those in our care or in need of our assistance. To all state employees: whether you protect our communities, care for our vulnerable populations, maintain our roadways or provide other important support to the residents of Delaware and beyond, you have answered the call of public service and are helping us build a better state.

I invited Director Ann Visalli of the Office of Management and Budget to join me in recognizing all of our state employees, including the recipients of the 2010 Delaware Award for Excellence and Commitment in State Service. – Jack Markell


As many of you know, states across the nation celebrated Public Service Recognition Week from May 3-9, 2010, in honor of the hundreds of thousands state and federal workers who have devoted themselves to careers in the public sector. The recognition week was originally established as a way to raise awareness about all of the vital and compassionate services public servants provide to citizens everywhere.

On Friday, Delaware’s Public Service Recognition Week culminated with the 2010 Delaware Award for Excellence and Commitment in State Service ceremony, which recognizes the exemplary efforts of state employees in service to the residents of Delaware. This year, we recognized the significant and outstanding actions and accomplishments of 26 employees from 13 different agencies who were nominated by their agency. From the 26, 4 individuals and 1 team were chosen to receive the 2010 award. These employees truly serve as a model of excellence in public service for all of us.

The 2010 winners are:

Lisa Shaw, Department of Safety and Homeland Security – Under Lisa’s coordination of the Checkpoint Strikeforce campaign, Delaware saw a significant decrease in alcohol-related fatalities from 43 percent in 2008 to 31 percent in 2009. Through her efforts, lives are saved on Delaware roadways.

Butch Weakland and Bob Daniel, Department of Transportation – Butch and Bob ran to the assistance of an elderly man they saw collapse in his yard. They responded immediately, contacted emergency medical services and provided assistance to the man and his wife until help arrived.

Denise Hudson, Department of Health and Social Services – Denise went above and beyond for an elderly, disabled client and his family during the 2009 holiday season. She organized community and business resources to make his home safe and livable, helped him obtain adequate medical care and contacted Toys-for-Tots for children in his care.

Robert Cooke, Department of Correction – Robert serves as a great role model for young correctional officers to emulate because of his perfect attendance record, exceptional work ethic, superior problem solving skills and enthusiasm.

Vernon Kirk, Department of Finance – Vernon led efforts to realize additional revenue for the State of Delaware from sports lottery during the last quarter of 2009. Vernon was also instrumental in leading the State Lottery Office’s efforts in table gaming as a complement to video lottery at Delaware’s three racetracks. 

This event has special meaning for all of us in state government because it gives us an opportunity to take a moment and thank so many people for the great service they provide all year long.

Delaware’s state employee workforce is among the most resilient, steadfast and dedicated groups of people in the country, so let’s extend public service recognition far beyond a week in May and make our appreciation for public servants a priority each and every day.

Justice Henry DuPont Ridgely; Rep. Darryl Scott; Lisa Sipple (OMB); Nominees Jowonna Thomas, Kelli Stepler, and Hope LaChance from DHSS; Lt. Governor Matt Denn; Governor Markell
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