By Amber Palmer-Halma
Since 1948, more than 500 outstanding federal employees have been recognized with an Arthur S. Flemming Award. On June 10, 13 public servants joined their ranks during an award ceremony hosted by the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration and held in the Grand Ballroom of the Cloyd Heck Marvin Center.
The awards honor Arthur Flemming’s commitment to public service throughout his distinguished career, which spanned seven decades and 11 presidencies. Recognized by the president of the United States, agency heads and the private sector, the winners are selected from all areas of the federal service. The award recognizes outstanding service and aims to attract outstanding candidates into careers in public service.
During this year’s ceremony, Nobel Laureate and Flemming Award winner William D. Phillips, current government employee at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, gave a keynote address.
“Your accomplishments, in areas ranging from basic scientific research to combating bio- and nuclear terrorism, have made you this year’s superstars,” Dr. Phillips said. “But more than that, you represent both the goodness and the greatness in the government of the country we love.”
This year’s 13 winners were selected in the fields of leadership or management, legal achievement, social science, clinical trials and translational research, applied science and engineering and basic science. The award winners were Kathryn Beers, David Bray, Gretchen Campbell, Michal Chojnacky, Kathryn Hellings, Paul Jablonski, Kathryn Macdonald, Amy O’Hara, Leticia Pibida, Timothy Persons, Philip Puxley, Francesca Ugolini and Joel Ullom.
“These award winners are inspiring representatives of public service,” said Kathryn Newcomer, director of TSPPPA. “It’s an honor to work with the Arthur S. Flemming Awards Commission, Federal Management Systems, Inc., and the National Academy of Public Administration to celebrate public service that attracts other outstanding individuals to a career in federal service.”
For the winners and the attendees at the June 10 awards ceremony, Dr. Phillips explained the idea behind the awards and the years of work that went into earning them.
“All of us, whether we are scientists, administrators, attorneys, or have any of a myriad of possible job descriptions, have chosen not only a particular kind of work, we have chosen to do it in public service. We work not only for ourselves, or for our colleagues, or even for our larger professional community. We work for the people of the United States, because we believe we can make a difference. And even when what we do is not universally understood or even appreciated by the citizens of this land, we take pride in knowing that our efforts will benefit our country, now and in the future. Those benefits may be in the spheres of industry, science, technology, national security, the economy, medicine, public health, public welfare or any of the multitude of areas of public and private life that make this such a great nation.”