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2004 Media Releases

December 13, 2004
For More Information Contact:
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 441-7831

Mayor Presents November Award Of Excellence

Mayor Coleen J. Seng today presented the Mayor’s Award of Excellence for November to a team from the Parks and Recreation Department – Chance Jensen and Nathan Genrich from the Aquatics and Recreation Division. The monthly award recognizes City employees who consistently provide exemplary service and work that demonstrates personal commitment to the City. The award was presented at the beginning of today’s City Council meeting.

The team was nominated in the category of valor by Holly Lewis, Assistant Recreation Manager. Jensen has worked for Parks since June of 2004, and Genrich worked for the City pools every summer since 1997. They were nominated for the award because of their lifesaving actions last summer.

On August 21, 2004, an unresponsive child was removed from the pool at Star City Shores. Within seconds, the entire staff responded to the emergency by administering aid, calling 911, handling the crowd, bringing safety equipment, securing the facility, gathering information and the other duties for which they had been trained. By the time the child was removed from the water, Genrich, the head lifeguard, was ready to assess the child’s condition. He began rescue breathing and chest compressions. Jensen, another lifeguard, responded immediately and worked with Genrich to continue CPR. After the child opened her eyes and began coughing, her condition was monitored until EMS arrived.

In her nomination, Lewis writes that the team’s quick assessment and response to the emergency came from years of training, practicing and fulfilling their commitment to patron safety. “Chance and Nate will tell you they were just doing their jobs, but their dedication to the safety of Star City Shores’ patrons saved a life,” wrote Lewis.

The other categories in which employees can be nominated are customer relations, productivity, safety and loss prevention. All City employees are eligible for the Mayor’s Award of Excellence except for elected officials and some managers. Individuals or teams can be nominated by supervisors, peers, subordinates and the general public. Nomination forms are available from department heads, employee bulletin boards or the Personnel Department, which oversees the awards program.

Nominations are reviewed by the Mayor’s Award of Excellence Committee, which includes a representative with each union and a non-union representative appointed by the Mayor. Award winners receive a $100 U.S. savings bond, a day off with pay and a plaque. Monthly winners are eligible to receive the annual award, which comes with a $500 U.S. savings bond, two days off with pay and a plaque.

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