Laurel city employees were recognized at the 18th annual awards ceremony and luncheon May 9 at the Partnership Activity Center.
Laurel Police Chief Richard McLaughlin received the Mayor's Award, the city's highest honor for employees. In presenting the award, Mayor Craig Moe noted McLaughlin's "long-standing and continuous dedication and service to the city, the Laurel Police Department and to the diverse community that is Laurel." McLaughlin received a plaque and $1,000 as part of his award.
Employee of the Year Awards, which included a plaque and $500, were presented to Lisa Woods, a fiscal specialist in the Department of Budget and Personnel Services; Laurel Police Ofc. Aaron Waddell; Bonny Ducote, a recreation program specialist in the Department of Parks and Recreation; James Cornwell-Shiel, webmaster in the Department of Information Technology; and Donald Jaworski, an automotive mechanic in the Department of Public Works.
Michele Saylor, director of Budget and Personnel Services, was awarded the Kristie M. Mills Leadership Award, which included a plaque and $300. Saylor was recognized for her efforts to add accountability and transparency in the city's finances.
Meritorious Service Awards were presented to five city employees: Jennifer Volack, animal warden/parking enforcement officer in the Police Department; Richard Blankenship, a code enforcement specialist in the Department of Community Planning and Business Services; Laurel Police Ofc. Marcus Currie; Brian Hutchinson, crew leader in the Department of Public Works; and Yasir Syed, systems analyst in the Department of Information Technology. The award included a plaque and $250.
Two groups of employees received Team Achievement Awards. The first team, Michael Eichorn, Christy Fang, Antonius Hallmark, Mike Kirk, Charlie Nickell, Tony Snowden and Clayton Wright were recognized for their efforts to enhance pedestrian and vehicular safety. The second team, Joanne Barr, Bill Bailey, Robin Cooch, Gena Wade, Danny Miller and Steve Odette, were honored for their collective response to the derecho weather emergency in July. Each award recipient received a certificate and $100.