MDARD Honors Outstanding Employees

For Immediate Release: November 5, 2019
Media Contact: Jennifer Holton, 517-284-5724

LANSING – When constituents and stakeholders think of staff at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, words like dedication, teamwork, customer service and problem-solvers come up. These characteristics embody the 2019 MDARD employee award winners as nominated by their MDARD colleagues. Additionally, 43 employees celebrating 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40-year anniversaries were also honored at MDARD’s Employee Awards Ceremony this week.

“I am blessed to work side-by-side each day with people who are committed to innovation, invested in the vitality of Michigan’s food and agriculture businesses and protecting public health,” said MDARD Director Gary McDowell. “This year’s award winners exemplify the culture and dedication of providing a high level of service to our constituents.”

The 2019 award winners:

Leadership Award: Brenda Smith – Portland
The “Leadership Award” is designed to provide recognition to those staff who are viewed as exceptional leaders by their peers, supervisors, and customers. The award recognizes an MDARD employee who rises to a challenge to lead, inspires others to act, and seeks opportunities to innovate and improve areas within the department.

Everyday Hero Award: Andria McCubbin-Green – Midland
The “Everyday Hero Award” affirms the value MDARD has in employees who may not be in the spotlight, yet steadily and faithfully get things done every day. It’s given to an employee who consistently demonstrates dependability, diligence, initiative, and teamwork.

Front Line Ambassador Award: Ben Schram – Laingsburg
The “Front Line Ambassador Award” is given to an employee who is regularly put in precarious and difficult situations, all the while demonstrating a positive attitude, identifying creative options for resolution, and following through with the constituent. The award is not given for a singular achievement or activity, but rather reflects a continuing commitment to the mission and values of MDARD.

Rookie of the Year: Lynn Timmer – Gaylord
The “Rookie of the Year Award” recognizes a new employee (on the job less than three years) whose service has set a benchmark for all others to attain. It is designed to provide recognition to those staff who are viewed as up and coming leaders within the department.


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