2016 Regional Director’s Awards Ceremony
Fisheries Staff Recognized for Excellence
BY KARLA BARTELT, REGIONAL OFFICE-FISHERIES
The first award presented was the Internal Customer Service Award, which was fittingly renamed the John Stokes Internal Customer Service Award in memoriam of the late John Stokes. The award was presented to Tracy Demeny from the Marquette Biological Station. Tracy’s nomination for the award mentions her high standards of professionalism, her outstanding ability to negotiate, her ability to bolster field staff’s morale, and her positive influence on our work and workforce, among many other attributes befitting the Internal Customer Services Award recipient and its namesake.
Station received the John Stokes Internal Customer Service Award.
Safety Improvement Award. Project Leader Scott Grunder accepted
the award on behalfof the station. Credit: USFWS
Hatchery received one of the two Workplace Improvement Awards.
Visual Information Specialist Karla Bartelt of Fisheries received the
second. Credit: USFWS
The Outreach Excellence Award was presented to Heidi Keuler from the La Crosse Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office. Heidi’s nomination commends her passion and dedication for outdoor youth education, as well as her interpersonal and partnership skills. She has developed and led numerous outreach activities, the impacts of which would be impossible to capture within this paragraph. Thousands of children have had an opportunity to learn about various outdoor activities due to Heidi’s exemplary vision and hard work, and we commend her outreach efforts.
The third award was presented to the staff of the Ludington Biological Station, who recently had two employees exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide in a mobile lab trailer. The staff immediately initiated an accident investigation and quickly determined the source of the carbon monoxide leak. They sealed the leak; established steps to ensure this problem would not recur, and finished the field season without further incident. For their dedication and quick efforts to address this potentially deadly issue, the Ludington station staff was presented the Safety Improvement Award.
The Science Excellence Award was presented to Emy Monroe, Ph.D. of the Whitney Genetics Laboratory. Emy Monroe personifies science excellence through her scientific rigor and work ethic, her original genetics research, and for leading validation efforts for the genetic technology now used to routinely monitor for Bighead and Silver Carp. Her exemplary research will continue to keep the Whitney Genetics Lab on the cutting edge of genetic technology for many years.
Two Workplace Improvement Awards were presented this year, one to Brandon Keesler from Iron River National Fish Hatchery, and the other to Karla Bartelt of the Regional Office Fisheries staff.
Brandon has completed several important projects over the last three years, and one project in particular is a great example of workplace improvement. Brandon upgraded 150 of the station’s 30-year-old, obsolete fluorescent light fixtures to new energy efficient LED technology. Thanks to his efforts, the new fixtures have resulted in a 62% reduction in energy consumption and a brighter, more consistently lit workplace for all.
Conference planning and its ever changing rules and regulations has been a long-standing, time consuming issue over the past several years. Karla Bartelt recognized a need to establish an efficient and effective process to ensure that accurate and timely expense calculations are compiled. Karla’s initiative and extensive knowledge of Excel brought this project to fruition, and her idea has transformed how we track and report conferences in Region 3, resulting in significant administrative and managerial time and money savings.
There were over 70 nominations for this year’s Regional Excellence Awards, and the managers and coworkers that took the time to recognize those who went above and beyond should also be applauded. These individuals recognized significant achievements and took the time to write and submit detailed and heartfelt nominations.
Appreciation is a powerful motivator that increases employee happiness and strengthens the bond between employees and the mission. We commend all of those that received awards and those that were nominated. Employee recognition is not a “One Day Event,” rather it is a catalyst to be utilized every day to inspire and engage employees to continue to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, and plants and their habitats throughout the year.