Kent County Department Heads have selected FREDERICK STRAUSS Jr. from the Department of Community Services as the September 2015 Employee of the Month.
Fred has been a Kent County employee since August 2004 and holds the position of Parks Worker III in the Division of Parks & Recreation. His primary duties include maintenance and repair of park structures and equipment, landscaping and grass cutting, trail inspection and clearing, and serving as team leader for the other Parks Workers working at the County’s four major parks.
Fred works primarily at Big Oak Park near Smyrna and has put his previous carpentry skills to great use for the County. He takes great pride in maintaining the 50 acre park like it is his own backyard. He is especially adept at keeping the softball fields in tournament ready condition with perfect chalk lines and manicured turf that is weed free.
According to Community Services Director Keith Mumford, “Fred’s dedication is one of the reasons we get so many compliments about Big Oak Park. The playground, picnic shelters, dugouts, restrooms, nature trail, and athletic fields are maintained in immaculate condition by the team he leads there. His meticulous work ethic and high skill level makes him a tremendous asset to the County park system.”
Congratulations Fred on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected RAFAEL SEFIL from the Department of Public Works as the August 2015 Employee of the Month.
Rafael has been a Kent County employee since March 2013 and holds the position of Maintenance Worker I in the Division of Wastewater Facilities. His primary duties include general maintenance of buildings located at the wastewater treatment facility as well as other Public Works facilities. He is a valuable member of the plant maintenance crew responsible for everything from UV disinfection system cleaning to painting curbs for safety.
Rafael started with the County as a Custodian in the Facilities Management Division, but his hard work and dedication to the job made him an ideal candidate for a vacant Maintenance Worker position at the wastewater treatment facility where he transferred in July 2014.
According to Public Works Director Andrew Jakubowitch, “Rafael really understands the concerns and issues of cleanliness at a wastewater facility especially through transfer contamination. His supervisors praise his work ethic and enjoy his positive cheerful attitude. He is truly a great asset to Kent County and the Public Works Department.”
Congratulations Rafael on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected KATHRYN E. RIDGWAY from the Department of Public Safety as the July 2015 Employee of the Month.
Katie has been a Kent County employee since February 2002 and serves as a Dispatcher II in the Emergency Communications Division. Her primary duties include responding to numerous emergency and non-emergency calls, assessing the critical response required, and then dispatching the proper emergency service.
Supervisors regularly praise her positive attitude and willingness to work whenever needed with little advance notice. She is especially proficient at handling multiple calls at one time and providing a calming influence to frantic 9-1-1 callers.
According to Public Safety Director Colin Faulkner, “Katie exemplifies the high skill level of Kent County’s 9-1-1 dispatchers. She is extremely professional to callers and highly responsive to emergency personnel responding to a scene. She is extraordinary deft on the CAD system and almost daily demonstrates an unparalleled knowledge of the emergency medical dispatch and emergency fire dispatch protocols.”
Congratulations Katie on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected KATHY J. PHINNEY from the Department of Administration as the June 2015 Employee of the Month.
Kathy, a Kent County employee since May 1994, is the Senior Secretary in the County Administrator’s Office primarily responsible for greeting visitors in person and over the telephone, managing the meeting schedules for the County Administrator and Levy Court Commissioners, managing the County Dog License Program and the County Conference Center schedule, and assisting with the assembly of weekly Levy Court meeting packets. She was previously honored as Employee of the Month in July 2002 and August 1997.
On a daily basis, Kathy consistently provides a favorable first impression when calling or visiting the County Administrator’s Office. She is a critical link between the public and the valuable services offered by the County. She often fields calls from residents seeking information not only about the County but about State agencies and City services. Her years of experience have made her a wealth of knowledge to colleagues and the citizens we all serve.
When new challenges such as the Dog Licensing Program arise, she embraces them with determination and enthusiasm. Whether it is coordinating schedules, arranging meetings, making travel arrangements or learning the latest technology, we can depend upon Kathy to get the job done with accuracy and grace. Her excellent customer service skills and caring attitude generate numerous positive comments from our Citizens.
Even after 20 years, Kathy is eager to expand her skills and grow in her service to Kent County. She recently completed 40 Hours of training with the International Institute of Municipal Clerks under the auspices of the Institute for Public Administration at the University of Delaware in pursuit of the nationally recognized Municipal Clerk Certification.
According to County Administrator Michael Petit de Mange, “Kathy is an outstanding employee who can be counted on to deliver high quality and friendly customer service to our Citizens and to her colleagues. We are fortunate to have Kathy as part of the Kent County Team and she is very deserving of this recognition.”
Congratulations Kathy on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected KATHLEEN “Kathy” SKINNER from the Office of the Kent County Sheriff as the May 2015 Employee of the Month.
Kathy, a Kent County employee since September 2003, is the Administrative Secretary in the Sheriff’s Office responsible for supervising clerical staff and coordinating monthly Sheriff and monition sales. She previously worked in the Planning Services Department before transferring in 2012. She was promoted to her current position just over a year ago.
Kathy has performed her new supervisory duties in a seamless and efficient manner. She has helped the office meet numerous operational challenges which often occurs after the retirement of a long-serving employee. One of her first ideas was to enhance security by adjusting the Sheriff’s office configuration and another involved better record keeping for pending sales.
Kathy is praised by supervisors for her attention to detail, especially in the documentation of financial transactions in the office. She has earned high regard from other County managers for her ability to tackle any task and learn new computer software quickly. Kathy often can complete what appears to be an insurmountable volume of work in days, when others have struggled for months to finish.
According to Sheriff Jason Mollohan, “Kathy has demonstrated to me since I took office in January that she can meet any challenge. She works extremely well with the other clerical staff, the deputies, and the dozens of law offices seeking procedural information or case updates.”
Congratulations Kathy on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected SUSAN K. WILLSON from the Department of Finance as the April 2015 Employee of the Month.
Sue has been a Kent County employee since February 2009 and serves as Assessment Supervisor in the Assessment Office. Her primary duty is supervising the day-to-day operations of the Assessment Office. Before assuming her current position in November 2012, Sue served as the Appraisal Systems Administrator.
Sue holds a State of Delaware license as an Assessor and has assisted new staff members with the requirements needed to obtain their professional licenses. Her adept ability to maneuver through the mass appraisal system software has proven to be extremely valuable on countless occasions. Her expertise in the property assessment process is highly regarded by the Board of Assessment Appeals.
According to Finance Director Susan Durham, “Sue’s quiet leadership in the assessment office made the transition from the previous supervisor seamless. Her extraordinary knowledge about the mechanics of the CAMA software and dedication to excellent customer service fosters a friendly work environment. She has cultivated a great working rapport with other departments and is committed to maintaining public confidence in the County’s property assessment process.”
Congratulations Sue on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected RICHARD K. WASHINGTON from the Department of Public Works as the March 2015 Employee of the Month.
Rick has been a Kent County employee since June 2001 and serves as WWF Plant Operator III in the Laboratory section of the Division of Wastewater Facilities. His primary duties include daily wastewater sample collection and evaluationof test results for optimization of plant operations. Rick had more than 15 years of experience as a laboratory technician for DNREC and in the private sector before joining Kent County.
Rick is praised by supervisors for his outstanding ability to accurately analyze sample data and maintain quality control. He has superior knowledge of sampling techniques, testing equipment, and the County’s laboratory processes. Over the years he has stepped up on several occasions to supervise the entire lab operation when the foreman was unavailable.
According to Asst. Public Works Director Keith Powell, “Rick exemplifies the high quality staff we have working at the wastewater treatment facility. His attention to detail produces accurate error-free results that are relied upon daily to ensure the plant is operating within DNREC permit limits. Rick is always willing to volunteer when staffing issues arise and to assist with meticulous project analysis. His insights and suggestions are invaluable.”
Congratulations Rick on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected JASON D. BERRY from the Department of Planning Services as the February 2015 Employee of the Month.
Jason has been a Kent County employee since July 2004 and serves as Planner II in the Division of Planning. His primary duties include review of site plans and subdivision plans for compliance with all ordinances and regulations and good planning principles; researching requests for rezonings, variances and special use permits; assisting the general public in understanding complex planning principles and practices through pre-application meetings; and preparing staff reports. Jason earned his AICP designation in 2007.
Congratulations Jason on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected RICHARD M. ALLEN from the Department of Public Safety as the January 2015 Employee of the Month.
Rich has been a Kent County employee since March 2008 and serves as Paramedic II in the Division of Emergency Medical Services. His primary duties include treating patients using advanced emergency care procedures and insuring the high quality delivery of life support techniques. In addition, he serves as the Field Training Officer for his shift responsible for orienting and evaluating new hires, precepting Delaware Tech paramedic students, and conducting continuing education training, and as a SWAT Medic.
Rich is praised by supervisors for his great attitude and critical evaluation of paramedic student performance. He is very reliable and willing to work overtime with little notice. He works closely with the Smyrna Police Department and devotes countless hours to SWAT training with officers there.
According to Public Safety Director Colin Faulkner, “Rich gets along with everybody. He is an excellent paramedic that clearly loves what he does, which in turn produces outstanding patient outcomes. He is great with work with and extremely deserving of this honor. I hope Rich remains a part of the team for a long, long time.”
Congratulations Rich on a job well done!
Kent County department heads have selected DARIN L. JONES from the Department of Community Services as the December 2014 Employee of the Month.
Darin is a Parks Worker II in the Parks & Recreation Division and has worked for Kent County since August 2005. His primary duties include cutting grass, general landscaping, maintaining equipment, inspecting and clearing trails, repairing park structures, and performing carpentry work in a safe manner.
When Darin joined the County, he brought a wealth of knowledge with more than 10 years of experience in the private sector in equipment maintenance and as a machinist. His skills also included carpentry, metal fabricating, painting, plumbing, and electrical work. He is also a certified welder.
Darin has put his farm hand experience as a youth and his advanced training as a welder to beneficial use to the County. He and his co-workers often fabricate tools to help get their jobs done. For example, mowing around fence posts can be difficult, so Darin reconfigured the mower to offset the handles resulting in a clean cut in less time. Last winter, parks staff recognized the need for a small trailer for the ATV. Rather than purchasing the apparatus, he and a co-worker reused scrap metal and broken equipment to fabricate the cart. It proved to very handy this past summer.
According to his supervisors, Darin can fix any piece of equipment. “It’s really amazing how Darin can see a potential fix to an unfixable problem, and then fabricate the fix himself”, said Director of Community Services Keith Mumford.
Congratulations Darin on a job well done!
Kent County department heads have selected DONNA L. ZERHUSEN from the Department of Finance as the November 2014 Employee of the Month.
Donna is an Account Analyst in the Accounting section and has worked for Kent County since September 2007. She is a graduate of Wilmington University with a Bachelors Degree in Accounting and earned a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from the university this past summer. Donna achieved her Certified Public Accountant designation in 2002.
Donna is chiefly responsible for preparing and reviewing requests for proposals, bid documents, and quotation summaries in accordance with DE Code Title 29 and County code for all Departments and funds of Kent County. In addition, she tracks general fund fixed assets and prepares general fund depreciation schedules for audit; oversees all the components of the capital projects fund including reviews of bids and contracts for compliance, cost spending, and budgeting; reconciles large complex accounts including grant funds received by the County, medical trust fund expenditures, pension fund transactions; and she manages numerous reporting functions. Her efforts are vital to a successful annual audit and bond issue. Her detailed financial analysis earns high praise from bond counsel and the auditors.
According to her supervisors, Donna is a dedicated member of the staff that diligently applies her accounting skills to ferret out savings in all areas of Kent County government. She is always willing to put in the necessary time to achieve budgeting and audit deadlines, and strives to exceed expectations. She relishes a good fiscal challenge and endeavors to help others understand how the various funds are interconnected.
Congratulations Donna on a job well done!
Kent County Department Heads have selected DEVIN S. DuPREE from the Department of Public Works as the October 2014 Employee of the Month.
Devin, a Maintenance Mechanic II in the Division of Wastewater Facilities, has worked for Kent County since October 2010. He is responsible for operating, maintaining, installing, and making repairs to pumps, valves, air release valves, all types of piping, and any other integral components in wastewater collection operations.
According to supervisors, Devin has demonstrated over and over his commitment to his job. Since being hired, he has earned perfect attendance honors each and every year - which by itself makes him stand out among his peers. He is always first to volunteer for overtime opportunities regardless of the nature of the event. In addition, it is important to point out that Devin left a promising career in the construction trades working with a great mentor to join Kent County. Since then he has used those extensive skills to greatly benefit County sewer operations.
According to Public Works Director Hans Medlarz, “Devin is an exceptional employee. He spent numerous hours helping repair the force main break located in the middle of U.S. 13 this past July and was first-in-line when hands-on action was needed. He is the wingman you want when the job gets difficult. You can certainly tell one’s work ethic when his assistance is requested over and over again by coworkers.”
Congratulations Devin on a job well done!