City Employees Honored

Mayor Tyra-Lukens with Scott Neal and the 2011 EPy Award Winners

The annual “Spring Employee Recognition Event” was held at City Center today. Each year, the Internal Employee Events Committee – on which I serve – coordinates this event.

I think I can speak for all employees when I say that we all look forward to attending, not only because the event honors fellow employees for reaching a milestone in their years of service, but it’s also a chance for us to recognize our coworkers with special “EPy” Awards.

EPy Award recipients are nominated by their peers, then the department directors and city manager evaluate the nominations and make the final determination for who will receive the awards. The awards pay tribute to those employees who consistently go above and beyond to perform their duties and serve the people of Eden Prairie.

Today, these employees were honored with the following awards:

  • Community Service Officer Louis Diethelm, Police Department: Carl J. Jullie Award for Excellence in Customer Service
  • Bruce Johnson, Fleet Services: Mayor Jean L. Harris Award for Community Service
  • Lisa Ramsey, Community Development Department: James G. Clark Award for Excellence in Teamwork
  • Mark Vandenberghe, Fire Department: Mayor Jean L. Harris Award for Community Service to the People of Eden Prairie
  • Michael Comeans, Water Plant; Lori Kerns, Human Resources; Andrea Kalligher, Community Center; and Tom Schmitz, Fire Department: City Manager Quality Awards

Two additional City Manager Quality Awards were also given this year, to the Inflow and Infiltration Team and the Snowplow Team, in honor of the extra efforts they’ve made in a year that has put their dedication to the test.

This year’s event was even more special because Mayor Nancy Tyra-Lukens was here to introduce a brand new EPy Award in honor of the legacy of former Eden Prairie City Manager Scott Neal — the Scott H. Neal Award for Excellence in Leadership. Here’s the description for this new award:

This award recognizes an employee whose leadership has had a positive impact on the organization. This award is named for former City Manager Scott Neal who fostered an environment that encouraged all city employees to become leaders, and who consistently exemplified the following leadership values as Eden Prairie’s City Manager: Model the Way, Inspire a Shared Vision, Challenge the Process, Enable Others to Act and Encourage the Heart.

Scott left Eden Prairie last October to go to Edina, but he was lured back here today under false pretenses so we could surprise him with this tribute. He was definitely surprised! Scott then had the honor of announcing Parks and Recreation Director Jay Lotthammer as the first recipient of the Scott H. Neal Leadership Award because of the enthusiasm, commitment and expertise he has displayed throughout his tenure as interim city manager. Jay was surprised too, as he was led to believe another employee would be receiving the award.

Former City Manager Carl Jullie and future Eden Prairie City Manager Rick Getschow were special guests and participated in the awards ceremony as well.

Scott Neal, Rick Getschow, Mayor Tyra-Lukens, Jay Lotthammer and Carl Jullie

I thought today’s event was one of the best we’ve ever had, and was proud to play a part in honoring the impressive leaders and coworkers with whom I get to work every day. Congratulations to all the 2011 EPy Award winners!

Kari Knoll
Communications Coordinator and Internal Events Committee Member