DEP Secretary John Quigley announced the winners of the 2015 Secretary's Excellence Awards during a ceremony on November 5.
This program acknowledges and celebrates the success and contributions of DEP employees, as well as their commitment to the agency's mission and core values. It honors those who go above and beyond in performing their duties, demonstrate outstanding work ethics and show an exceptional commitment to protecting human health and the environment.
In addition, it recognizes the outstanding work of an employee outside of the workplace to better the community.
The Award for Outstanding Achievement, presented to any employee whose performance included a singular outstanding achievement in a certain facet of work over the last 12 months, went to NERO Waste Supervisor Jim Kunkle.
Kunkle was recognized for his outstanding, persistent, and tireless work over 15 years as DEP's Project Manager for the Palmerton Zinc Superfund Site.
He has been a constant and instrumental voice for DEP in working with other state and federal partners, the responsible parties, and the public to clean up extensive soil and water contamination and restore natural resources at this Superfund Site.
Over the years, he has reviewed and commented on dozens of technical cleanup reports, attended many meetings and negotiations, and public meetings, and performed many site inspections.
Kunkle’s work helped clean up the local environment in Palmerton, restore damaged natural resources, and to date has led to the acquisition and preservation of almost 2,000 acres of important land for habitat protection and recreation.
Nominations were received from across the agency for personnel in all program areas. The selection process was conducted by a committee of 12 employees who graded each nomination based on the award's prescribed criteria.
Their recommendations were reviewed and approved by the Secretary as well as the Bureau of Human Resources.
A list of all Secretary’s Award Winners is available online.(Reprinted from the Nov. 12 DEP News. Click Here to sign up for your own copy.)