The Board of Education honored five Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) employees with Outstanding Personnel Awards on June 12. Honored were:
- Connie Bannister, secretary, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School;
- Donald "Bruce" Elliott, food service manager, Westlake High School;
- LaVerne Hicks, special education instructional assistant, Berry Elementary School;
- Michael Mickey, network engineer, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building; and
- Hubert Robey, HVAC mechanic, Radio Station Road Annex Building.
Elliott is the 2012 Outstanding Food Service Manager. He has worked at Westlake for the past five years and was nominated for the award by Crystal Sopher, food service supervisor. Elliott trains his staff to take pride in their work, and inspires the desire in them to learn new things. His knowledge of equipment enables him to effectively train employees at all schools, and he has a deep understanding of managing a food service operation including the importance of sanitation, record keeping and financial responsibility. Elliott is anxious to learn new skills and is currently working towards becoming certified by the School Nutrition Association. He has the respect and cooperation of the food service staff, administration, school staff, students and the Westlake community. He is always willing to help anyone in need, including other schools in the county, and has built an outstanding team that handles the day-to-day operations of Westlake. Among his staff, Elliott emphasizes the importance of cleanliness, preparedness and politeness as keys to an exemplary food service program. He is also well known for his willingness to promote others. "Elliott has a positive rapport with students and clear expectations and practices in our cafeteria. Mr. Elliott seeks to empower his staff. Westlake is exceptionally lucky to have Mr. Elliott as our cafeteria manager," Westlake Principal Chrystal Benson wrote in a nomination letter.
Hicks is the 2012 Outstanding Instructional Support Employee. She has worked at Berry for six years and was nominated by Berry Principal Marvin Jones for displaying a genuine passion for children. Hicks' actions demonstrate that student success is at the forefront of her mind and she is willing to do whatever is asked of her. She is diligent, professional, and dependable and uses many resources to complete tasks within a timely manner. Hicks demonstrates a positive attitude and exemplar work ethic and often excels in supervising special education students' needs in the inclusion classroom setting. Hicks serves on a number of committees and volunteers to assist with school events including the bus and green teams, Relay for Life, the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) program and manages the Special Olympics basketball team. Jasmine Jordan, a student at Berry, said Hicks has helped her raise her grades. "Without her I would not have the grades that I get now. She also makes me confident and gets us ready for what to expect next year in sixth grade," Jordan wrote in a nomination letter. "Mrs. Hicks is very well-respected, both professionally and personally, by all her colleagues because of the excellence she pursues in who she is and in all she does," Jones wrote in a nomination letter.
Mickey is the 2012 Outstanding Instructional Technology Employee. He has worked for the school system for the past seven years and was nominated for the award by Lora Bennett, the instructional technology director for CCPS. He was nominated for his exemplar work ethic and for demonstrating initiative, a positive attitude and excellent interpersonal skills. Mickey is well known among his peers as honorable, dependable and knowledgeable. He consistently works beyond his regular work schedule to help others and he displays excellent technology troubleshooting skills. With a strong background in technology, Mickey uses his knowledge and available resources to ensure all schools have the necessary instructional resources. He is usually the first to explore new technologies to see how they can be useful to the school system and often volunteers to take the lead role on new projects. In his award nomination letters, Mickey is described as flexible and dependable. "He develops and maintains good working relationships, and is always willing to help out wherever he is needed. Teachers and administrative staff know they can always count on Michael to quickly and efficiently resolve any problems they experience, as well as be proactive in preventing problems from occurring in the first place," said Jill Warring, a network engineer for CCPS, in a nomination letter.
Robey is the 2012 Outstanding Maintenance Employee. He has worked for the school system since 2007 and was nominated for the award by his peers in the maintenance department. He is extremely thorough and pays attention to all details in his work assignments. Robey has the ability to quickly sort through the complexities of any problem and distinguishes unimportant issues from key components. He is very knowledgeable in his field, and his colleagues seek his advice and respect his opinions. He volunteers to take on extra assignments and help his fellow mechanics whenever he can. Robey is a great leader and knows how to motivate staff and provide them with positive feedback. His enthusiasm and "can do" attitude inspires the HVAC team to set and achieve goals. He is reliable, fulfills his commitments and always meets his work deadlines. "Hubert is always polite and respectful of others. His sensitivity to the viewpoints of others helps promote an atmosphere of mutual respect. He is an important contributor to the morale and success of the electro-mechanical team," Bernard Barnes, an assistant in operations for CCPS, wrote in a nomination letter.
The Board each year honors exemplary support staff in five different job categories. The goals of the awards are to recognize exemplary employees in the areas of building services, food services, maintenance, secretarial services and instructional support, and to encourage employees to provide creative and quality services that support the effective and efficient operations of the school system. Charles County Public Schools provides 26,700 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 35 caring community schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
Pictured above are the 2012 Charles County Public Schools Outstanding Personnel Award recipients. Pictured, from left, are Connie Bannister, secretary, Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School; Michael Mickey, network engineer, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building; LaVerne Hicks, instructional assistant, Berry Elementary School; and Donald "Bruce" Elliott, food service manager, Westlake High School. Not pictured is Hubert Robey, an HVAC mechanic, Radio Station Road Annex Building.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Dr. Patricia Vaira, Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 Coordinator (students), or Keith Hettel, Section 504 Coordinator (employees/adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, Maryland 20646; (301) 932-6610/870-3814. For special accommodations call (301) 934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.