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July 20
Commissioners Recognize Employee Award Winners

At its Monday, July 20, 2015, meeting, the Wake County Board of Commissioners recognized employees and partner organizations who had recently won 19 prestigious awards. The County received 10 Achievement Awards from the National Association of Counties (NACo), which recognize innovative county programs, and five Awards of Excellence from the National Association of County Information Officers (NACIO), which recognize outstanding public relations and public information completed in counties throughout the United States in 2014.

Below is a description of each program or project that won an award.

NACo Achievement Awards

Community Services (one award)

  • Wake County Public Libraries' Teen Leadership Corps is a leadership, learning and service program that offers teens the opportunity to develop leadership skills and explore and encourage talents, while contributing to the community and cultivating friendships.

Environmental Services (four awards)

  • Environmental Services' finance staff designed and implemented a business intelligence dashboard to support fact-based decision-making at a low cost and with minimum involvement from the County's Information Services department.
  • Wake County Animal Center's Foster on Deck program allows for rapid placement of kittens that are less than eight weeks old and resulted in a 30 percent increase in kittens' leaving the shelter for foster homes.
  • During the Animal Center's Shelter Rounds meetings, key personnel discuss animals that are considered to be at-risk for euthanasia due to behavioral issues on the adoption floor, so that at-risk animals can be identified when symptoms first start to show and to develop a plan to help release these animals.
  • Kaizen means incremental improvement. Water Quality created a Kaizen Team to reduce the time and complexity of permit evaluation and processing for septic permits.

Human Resources (two awards)

  • Employee Health Centers offer health management strategy at two locations to employees and their spouses who are covered on the County's health plan.
  • Human Resources improved recruiting of new employees with a goal of getting the right people in the right place at the right time. Successful measures include increased accessibility and navigation, reduced error rate, an increase in customer satisfaction and an 11.5 percent increase in the number of applications received.

Human Services (three awards)

  • Budget Cabinet, composed of program directors, managers and some fiscal professionals, to promote sound budget management, accountability and best practices that comply with federal, state and local laws, regulations, policies and procedures.
  • The LINKS program provides services that help youth in foster care transition to adulthood. LINKS used Skype, Google Hangout and social media to ensure youth could participate in "Making Proud Choices," which teaches youth how to make positive choices about sexually transmitted infections, sexually transmitted disease prevention and postponement of parenthood.
  • The SharePoint WIC application for the County's Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Food and Nutrition Program virtually manages workflow at five program sites. SharePoint is a Web-based collaboration and communication tool that integrates intranet, content management and document management.

NACIO Awards of Excellence

  • More than 550 people attended theWake County Transit Investment Strategy Kickoff Event on Monday, December 8, 2014. The event was coordinated by the County with the full support and participation of its partner agencies.
  • As staff estimated that Wake County would reach one million residents in August 2014, several departments worked with the Board of Commissioners to develop an educational campaign called Wake Hits a Million.
  • The County's corporate Twitter account @WakeGov, which currently has more than 20,000 followers, is a social media tool used to engage with residents, visitors, businesses and others. For the second straight year, the County's Twitter account received an Award of Excellence as the best county Twitter account.
  • The accomplishments video, part of the 2014 State of the County address, received two Awards of Excellence. In addition to being shown at a November Board meeting, it has been distributed at community events, on social media and on YouTube.

Additional Awards

  • Wake County was ranked 4th among large counties in the United States for technology use by this year's Digital Counties Survey, conducted by the Center for Digital Government. Wake is up four spots from the previous two years. The Digital Counties Survey ranks counties nationwide in technology use throughout the organization and county as a whole
  • Libraries received a PR Xchange Award for their Freedom to Read display. In September 2014, all County libraries had displays that promoted residents' "freedom to read" whatever they choose. The award, sponsored by the Library Leadership Administration and Management Association's Public Relations and Marketing Section, recognizes the best public relations materials produced by libraries in the past year.
  • Environmental Services received an Excellence Award for the 86it anti-litter campaign, launched in 2010 to emphasize the importance of residential participation by focusing on the positive action of throwing trash away. The Solid Waste Association of North America Excellence Awards Program recognizes outstanding solid waste programs and facilities.
  • Human Services Director Regina Petteway won the Leolia Spaugh Health Leadership Award from Strengthening the Black Family, Inc., a coalition of community and government organizations, businesses and individuals that focuses on health, education and economic development for African Americans and all families in Wake County. The award is named for Leolia Spaugh, a longtime community advocate for health and wellness issues. Petteway received this honor for her work in Human Services and her dedication to the community.

A list of awards can be found at wakegov.com/awards.





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