City of Lincoln
2005 Media Releases
Mayor Coleen J. Seng today presented the Mayor’s Award of Excellence for 2004 to a team from three City departments: Jay Edmiston of Public Works and Utilities, Dave Bomberger of Parks and Recreation, and Leon Marquart of the Health Department. The award recognizes City employees who consistently provide exemplary service and work that demonstrates personal commitment to the City.
All monthly winners are eligible to receive the annual award. The winning team was the monthly award winner in May 2004. Jay is a Public Works Inspector and has been employed by the City since 1972. Dave has been employed by the City since 1968 and is Parks Operations Coordinator. Leon, employed by the City since 1989, is an Environmental Health Specialist. They were nominated in the category of productivity by Scott Holmes, Environmental Health Manager of the Health Department, for their work to initiate and operate a city-wide mosquito spraying program in 2003 to limit the cases of West Nile Virus.
Once the decision was made to implement the spraying program, it had to be in place within 90 days in order to protect the community. The City had not sprayed for mosquitos for more than 30 years, if ever, so departments had no equipment or employees who were experienced in operating a spraying program.
Funds were allocated to purchase the equipment, and the team was dispatched to St. Paul, Minnesota to learn the skills needed to make the mosquito spraying program effective and efficient. When they returned, they coordinated their respective departments to service the equipment and schedule spray crews. Once spraying started, the three were often on the job from 6 a.m. until 11 p.m. The program was in operation about 30 days, and in that time, no valid complaint was received about the operation.
In his nomination, Holmes wrote, “The final number of reported West Nile Virus cases in Lancaster County was 129 with two deaths. There is no doubt that, due to the efforts of Jay, Dave and Leon, the number of people that would have contracted West Nile Virus disease was reduced significantly.”
The honorable mention award winner is Dodi Warne, a Records Supervisor in the Lincoln Police Department. She won the monthly award in January 2004. She was nominated in the category of productivity by Edward Ragatz, the Records Manager, for her efforts to maintain supervisory staffing of two shifts during a staff shortage.
As monthly winners, Warne, Edmiston, Bomberger and Marquart have each received a $100 U.S. savings bond, a day off with pay and a plaque. The three winners of the annual award will each receive a $150 U.S. savings bond, two days off with pay and a plaque.
All City employees are eligible for the Mayor’s Award of Excellence except for elected officials and some managers. In addition to productivity, employees can be nominated in the categories of customer relations, valor, safety and loss prevention. Individuals or teams can be nominated by supervisors, peers, subordinates and the general public. Nomination forms are available from department heads, employee bulletin boards or the Personnel Department, which oversees the awards program. All nominations are reviewed by the Mayor’s Award of Excellence Committee, which includes a representative with each union and a non-union representative appointed by the Mayor.