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United States Environmental Protection Agency

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2005 National Notable Achievement Award Ceremony
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Overview

The 2005 National Notable Achievement Awards Ceremony was held in Arlington, Virginia on April 27, 2005. Each year this program recognizes outstanding achievements in regional waste management programs. The Superfund National Notable Achievement Awards were created in the late 1980's to recognize the special achievements of on-scene coordinators, remedial project managers, community involvement coordinators, and others. They have been joined by awards in Brownfields, Emergency Management, Federal Facilities, Regional Science, RCRA Corrective Action, and Superfund Enforcement. This year new awards were created to recognize outstanding achievements in Cross Program Revitalization, Environmental Justice, Homeland Security, and the Oil Program. The Office of Underground Storage Tanks also created a new LUST Compliance Award.

The Award Ceremony was attended by more than 200 EPA staff, family, and friends. EPA Administrator Steve Johnson made a few remarks and posed for photographs with award winners. Johnson noted the important direct beneficial impacts of OSWER staff on the quality of life of thousands of people across this country in improving their health and environment, and in securing a safer future for all. Tom Dunne, AA for OSWER, thanked award recipients for making their efforts the best they have to give, and reiterated OSWER and OECA's commitment to continue to recognize and reward staff who exemplify the best we can be.

The awards recognize exemplary accomplishments on the front lines of EPA's waste management and emergency response programs. The 38 awards winners, selected from a total of 172 nominations, were recognized with plaques and monetary awards. This year, half the awards went to individual winners, and half to high-performance teams.

Walter Kovalick, Director of the Technology Innovation and Field Services Division opened the ceremony, welcomed attendees and emphasized the prestige, pride, and honor this annual award ceremony provides to recipients specifically, as well as the Regional waste management programs. He recognized the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER) and Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) directors who would be presenting awards, as well as Regional managers and family members in attendance. He then introduced Acting Assistant Administrator of OSWER, Tom Dunne, who introduced Administrator Steve Johnson. Group photos of award winners and Steve Johnson are available at http://clu-in.org/awards/2005pictures.cfm

Presentation of Awards

James Woolford, Director of the Federal Facilities Restoration and Reuse Office, presented the Individual and Team Federal Facility Response awards. He noted that FFRRO would like to recognize not only specific people for their individual and team accomplishments, but also the contributions made by EPA and our partners who work so diligently in improving our environment. He then acknowledged the significant accomplishments of this year’s winners: Tim Woolheater of Region 4 and the Weldon Spring Team from Region 7.

Cliff Rothenstein, Director of the Office of Underground Storage Tanks, noted that last year was OUST's first year participating in this awards program. He said, “We enjoyed it so much that we decided to add a second award for the compliance side of the LUST program. I believe it's important to recognize compliance accomplishments since it reduces later clean ups.” He then presented the Outstanding Compliance Team of the Year Award to the Source Water Team from Region 1, and the Cleanup/Revitalization Award to Region 9's Santa Monica MTBE Team.

Mike Cook, Director of the Office of Superfund Remediation and Technology Innovation, next presented seven categories of awards that honor outstanding achievement in Regional Superfund programs. They recognize the accomplishments of an RPM (Jim Christiansen, Region 8); Site Assessment Manager (Carolyn Callihan, Region 4); Community Involvement Coordinator (Patricia Taylor, Region 3); Leader/Mentor (John Frisco, Region 2); Outstanding Achievement (Jinky Callado, Region 9); two Teams (New Bedford Harbor, Region 1 and Virginia Carolina Chemical Phosphate Fertilizer Team, Region 4) and three Records of Decision (Award to Many Diversified Industries, Region 6 and honorable mentions to Beede Oil Site, Region 1 and Jackson Steele Site, Region 2). Mr. Cook congratulated all the Superfund recipients for their creativity, innovation, and dedication to the communities they work with and to all of EPA.

Debbie Dietrich, Director of the Office of Emergency Management, presented the Chemical Emergency Preparedness and Prevention (CEPP) awards for National Leadership (Michael Ardito) and State Partner (Bob Hayes, Louisiana). Ms. Dietrich also presented two OSC of the Year awards to Steve Jarvella, Region 3 and David Dorian, Region 4. She then introduced two new awards for 2005–Homeland Security (Jim Mitchell, Region 5) and the Oil Program (Matt Carr, Region 10). Ms. Dietrich congratulated all the recipients for their outstanding work and exemplary efforts.

OSWER Science Advisor, Lee Hoffman, presented the Regional Science awards. They included Regional Scientist of the Year, Ghassan Khoury, and Regional Science Team of the Year, RCRA Cumulative Risk Team, both from Region 6. She emphasized the importance of the efforts put forth by the award recipients, and commented, “Region 6 is the model Region this year for their work on developing and applying new assessment and exposure models.”

Barry Breen, Deputy Assistant Administrator for OSWER, presented two new awards this year, for Outstanding Achievement in Environmental Justice and Cross Program Revitalization. Brian Holzclaw, Region 4, received the EJ award, while the Land Revitalization Team award went to Little Elk Creek Interagency Workgroup, Region 3. Mr. Breen commented he was delighted to see so many qualified nominees from almost all of our 10 EPA regions for these two new awards. He commended all of the nominees because they demonstrate the importance of these two critical areas, and that projects across the country are benefitting from collaborative efforts of our nation's cleanup programs.

The Superfund Enforcement awards were presented by Susan Bromm, Director of the Office of Site Remediation Enforcement (OSRE) and Elliot Gilberg, Deputy Director, OSRE. They noted that today's recipients have exhibited the best concepts of Superfund Enforcement–using all available enforcement tools to achieve fair settlements that support clean-up remedies while working with the wide range of stakeholders to ensure a broad based acceptance of decisions. Mr. Gilberg gave a brief description of each recipient’s achievements and presented plaques to each winner. Recipients were John Kilborn (Region 1) for Legal Enforcer of the Year; Carlyn Prisk (Region 3) for Technical Enforcer of the Year. The team awards went to Region 3's Special Accounts Management Team for Financial Management; and the Tennessee Products Team from Region 4 for Enforcement.

Matt Hale, Director of the Office of Solid Waste, presented the RCRA Corrective Action and Resource Conservation Challenge awards. They included Individual and Team awards for Outstanding Use of Innovative Approaches to Edgar Davis, Region 1, and the RCRA Innovations Team, Region 8. The GTE/Whisman Site Team from Region 9 won the Connecting Communities to Cleanup Award. Individual and Team awards for Capitalizing on Redevelopment Potential went to Jonathan Adenuga, Region 5, and the Allied Baltimore Redevelopment Team, Region 3. State awards for Corrective Action Reform went to South Carolina and Virginia. Region 4 won both RCC awards–Pam Swingle took the individual award, and the team award went to the School Chemical Clean Out Team.

Linda Garczynski, Director of the Office of Brownfields Cleanup and Redevelopment, presented the award for Outstanding Brownfields Teamwork to the Region 7 Team for its St. Louis Brownfields Effort. She noted that the team developed and applied an effective strategy which continues to bring life back to a city that has been overwhelmed by poverty, unemployment, and thousands of vacant properties.

In closing, Mr. Kovalick once again thanked and congratulated each award recipient for their hard work and dedication. He also made a point to recognize the team effort that goes into the awards program from preparing nominations to selecting the most deserving candidates. He especially thanked Ann Eleanor for overseeing the awards process for the past 13 years. Mr. Kovalick explained that Ann would be retiring this year, so the baton will be passed to someone else. Ann received a huge round of applause from the audience as thanks for her efforts.

Writeups for each award can be access from the links to the left.

About the Program

The Superfund National Notable Achievement Awards were established in the late 1980's to recognize the special achievements of OSCs, RPMs, and other Superfund staff. The awards program has expanded since its inception to recognize the growing emphasis on teamwork, to reflect changes in the Superfund program, and to include the entire hazardous waste management family. All 10 EPA Regions participate in the Awards program.

Over the past several years, the National Superfund Notable Achievement Awards categories have grown, and currently recognize the achievements of: OSCs, RPMs, Site Assessment Managers (SAM), Community Involvement Coordinators (CIC), Leaders/Mentors, Teams of the Year, and Outstanding Achievement.

The Superfund Enforcement Awards were designed to recognize the vital role enforcement plays in the hazardous waste management process. The identification of potentially responsible parties and the recovery of expenditures are essential to the survival of the Superfund program. The individual and team awards were created to reward exceptional accomplishments in Superfund enforcement are Legal Enforcer of the Year, Technical Enforcer of the Year, Financial Management Team of the Year, and Enforcement Team of the Year.

The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action (CA) awards were established to recognize individuals and teams who have turned ideas and concepts for RCRA CA improvements into reality. These improvements focus on moving the RCRA CA program to become more efficient, protective, responsive, and faster, as well as results driven. The rewards are team and individual for Outstanding Use of Innovative Approaches, Connecting Communities to Cleanups, Capitalize on Revitalization Potential, and State Corrective Action Reforms.

The Regional Science awards were created to recognize Regional science staff who support the EPA hazardous waste programs. These awards are given for innovative and outstanding contributions to the science of hazardous waste management including but not solely in the area of risk assessment.

The Emergency Management awards (formerly Chemical Emergency Preparedness and Prevention) were expanded in 2005 and now include not only On-Scene Coordinator of the Year and Leadership awards, but also Homeland Security and Oil Program awards. These awards
recognize national leadership in promoting efforts that lead to outstanding emergency response, chemical safety program improvements on the national level, and significant achievements in oil program spill prevention and response.

The Federal Facilities Response Outstanding Achievement awards were designed to recognize individuals and teams who make positive progress toward cleanup and beneficial reuse or redevelopment of sites through innovative and streamlined processes.

The Underground Storage Tanks Outstanding Team of the Year award was developed to recognize the teams that demonstrate outstanding accomplishments of work that contribute to the clean up and revitalization of underground storage tank sites. In 2005 OUST added an award for outstanding team achievement in LUST program compliance.

The Brownfields Outstanding Teamwork award recognizes the superior contributions of one EPA Regional team toward brownfields assessment, cleanup and redevelopment, job training efforts, and development of new partnerships.

Two other awards initiated in 2005 include Outstanding Achievement in Cross Program Revitalization and Environmental Justice. The Cross Program Land Revitalization Team Award recognizes the cross-program team effort of individuals working to revitalize a contaminated site or cluster of sites. The Environmental Justice Outstanding Achievement award is given to recognize individuals or teams working on waste related initiatives, projects, or activities that have made a significant contribution to environmental justice through innovation, leadership, and personal environmental commitment.

Awarded annually, the National Notable Achievement Awards have been acknowledged by managers and staff as an important tool in recognizing exemplary accomplishments by staff supporting hazardous waste management programs.

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2005 Ceremony Summary | 2005 Ceremomy Pictures
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Page Last Modified: May 13, 2005