Premier Christy Clark highlighted outstanding work done by B.C.’s public service employees and inducted three new people into the BC Public Service Hall of Excellence at the Premier’s annual Innovation and Excellence Awards ceremony.
“Public Service employees make a daily contribution to this province, and this is one way we can recognize the difference they make,” said Premier Clark. “These award winners and Hall of Excellence inductees reflect the outstanding work done on behalf of British Columbians every day, and it’s an honour to be able to help celebrate their success.”
Five outstanding public-service nominations were recognized for their innovation in providing essential services in five categories: Leadership, Organizational Excellence, Partnership, Innovation and Emerging Leader. This year’s winners are:
- Emerging Leader:
Penny Trites, Ministry of Children and Family Development
With a unique talent to make people smile and engage in a meaningful way, Ministry of Children and Family Development’s Agassiz team leader Penny Trites is the epitome of an emerging leader, whether it’s working with street-entrenched youth, First Nations communities or her team.
The Connect Story, Ministry of Children and Family Development
Highlighted for excellence in innovation is the Connect Parent Group, developed in collaboration with the Maples Adolescent Treatment Centre and Simon Fraser University. This program addresses a critical gap in services for both parents and caregivers of adolescents with serious behaviour and mental health problems by helping parents respond more effectively to challenges in their relationships with their teen.
- Organizational Excellence:
Elk Valley Water Quality Plan – Area Based Management Plan and Valley Wide Permit Review Team, Ministry of Environment
The award for Organizational Excellence goes to the Ministry of Environment team that worked on the Elk Valley Water Quality Plan – the most complex technical challenge the ministry has faced in water quality management for an active operation. The ministry worked across government as well as with Teck Coal Ltd., US federal and state governments, First Nations, and independent science specialists to develop a plan to stabilize and reverse water quality concentrations in the Elk and Fording Rivers.
Roberts Bank Rail Corridor Program, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure
Excellence in partnership drove the success of the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor Program – an unprecedented collaboration of 12 public and private funding partners. The project delivered eight rail overpasses and a rail siding project along a 70-kilometre trade corridor that connects terminals at Roberts Bank in Delta with the North American rail and road network.
Kathy Eichenberger, Ministry of Energy and Mines
As a ‘passionate connector’ Kathy Eichenberger uses her authenticity and integrity to build effective strategic alliances across a broad range of stakeholder groups. Kathy has consistently shown excellence in leadership in all her work, from leading the Ministry of Environment regional office in Nelson, to her work leading environmental assessments of major resource projects and the Columbia River Treaty Review.
“What stands out the most when I look at the award winners is their dedication and passion for the work they do, and that should be honoured,” said Finance Minister Michael de Jong. “British Columbia moves forward thanks to the work of individuals like these, who have made great strides for British Columbians in all sorts of vital ways.”
Also recognized were three new inductees to the BC Public Service Hall of Excellence. The Hall of Excellence is the highest honour the BC Public Service can extend to its employees, recognizing long-lasting achievement, dedication, and service to the province. This year’s inductees are:
- Paula Grant, Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation
Paula Grant has committed her entire public service career to improving the lives of people with disabilities and their families in British Columbia. Paula’s unflagging energy and care for those she serves have been hallmarks of her more than 40-year career. Paula has worked tirelessly to drive and influence the most significant provincial and national government initiatives undertaken to create more inclusive and community-based lives for people living with disabilities.
- Dr. Perry Kendall, Provincial Health Officer
Dr. Perry Kendall has devoted his professional life in British Columbia to promoting and pursuing innovative health care. His efforts have focused on preventing disease and promoting population health. Health Minister Terry Lake recently said, “Over the past decade and a half, Dr. Kendall has served under multiple administrations, always acting with integrity and independence, and in the best interest of British Columbians. He has seen our province through several public health emergencies, from SARS in 2003 to H1N1 in 2009, and most recently Ebola.”
- Don White, Ministry of International Trade
Under Don White’s visionary leadership, some of the most significant and comprehensive trade agreements have been negotiated that will forever impact the competitiveness and economy of British Columbia. His legacy includes the Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement between British Columbia and Alberta and its successor the New West Partnership Trade Agreement.
All nominations go through a two-part judging process. Initially, Premier’s Award nominations are considered at a provincial level and reviewed by external, independent adjudicators who evaluate the nominations on a category-by-category basis. Adjudicators select the regional finalists, including regional Premier’s Award recipients. The adjudicators also produce a short list for the judges to review for provincial consideration. To be considered at the provincial level, the project or person has to demonstrate significant impact or implement procedures widely adopted across multiple regions of the province. A panel of external judges then reviews the short-listed provincial nominations and selects the provincial finalists.
Videos of the Premier’s Awards finalists can be viewed online at: https://www.youtube.com/user/BCPublicService
Learn more about the BC Public Service Hall of Excellence and previous B.C. Legacy winners: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/careers/hall-of-excellence