Maryland: MDA Recognizes Employees of the Second and Third Quarter of 2023 

ANNAPOLIS, MD (November 9, 2023) – The Maryland Department of Agriculture has recognized several employees for their hard work and dedication over the second and third quarter of 2023. Jessica Boyles and Tiffany Hatridge, both of the Plant Protection and Weed Management Program received Outstanding Performance awards for the second quarter.  In addition, Rachel McVey of the Animal Health Program received the Customer Service award and Richard Glasgow of Resource Conservation received the Leadership award.

During the third quarter, Karen Fedor of the Marketing Program and Jerel Spence of the Resource Conservation program both received the Outstanding Performance award.

"These employees have demonstrated exceptional dedication to their work and improving systems within MDA," said Maryland Agriculture Secretary Kevin Atticks. "I am pleased to recognize Jessica, Tiffany, Rachel, Richard, Karen and Jerel for their work over the past two quarters! Our outstanding employees are the backbone of this agency!"

Second Quarter Outstanding Performance Award: Jessica Boyles- Plant Protection and Weed Management, Agriculture Inspector

Jessica has been the backbone of the Spotted Lanternfly Suppression program since 2019 and has been responsible for scheduling and coordinating the efforts of the program's field operations. One of her first efforts was streamlining the process by which field surveys were undertaken. She abandoned the time-consuming strategy of Googling individual addresses and implemented a system of GIS-powered maps that allow the field team to accurately target their survey sites. She has continued to implement multiple GIS maps that have improved the effectiveness of the program and enhanced the information gathered from the field. She has made herself available for new hire onboarding, public appearances, media interviews, industry panels, industry training, and field treatments (SLF suppression), trapping, and surveying. Jess arrives at work before any other team member does and stays late until the last field team member has come safely back. She offers constructive, collaborative ideas that can be used to make the program more effective. The success of the spotted lanternfly suppression program would not be possible without Jessica Boyles.

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Second Quarter Outstanding Performance Award: Tiffany Hatridge- Plant Protection and Weed Management, Administrative Aide

Tiffany Hatridge has independently updated the PPWM records retention schedule and directed the removal of 270 banker boxes full of outdated material from PPWM offices. Her ability to get this task completed in approximately 7 months is incredible, especially as she was working with more than 15 PPWM staff to coordinate the review of documents and removal of boxes. This was all accomplished while carrying out her normal duties. Tiffany is a critical part of the PPWM team and is always willing to help staff and makes sure to keep the program together and moving forward. She is invaluable to the program manager, always offering reminders and assistance with anything that is asked of her. Her knowledge of our programs and the agency allow for most questions to be answered quickly, and help to get staff to the right program and or person. She is an asset to PPWM and we are extremely lucky to have her working with us.

Second Quarter Customer Service Award: Rachel McVey- Animal Health, Office Secretary

Rachel is always willing to help the laboratory to maintain the mission consistently following through on assigned duties, maintaining a positive attitude during busy times in the lab. She is able to keep up with the constant change in purchasing procedures to ensure the budget is maintained. She contributes to the team and promotes positive work environment. Rachel is committed to the values and integrity of the MDA Frederick Animal Health Laboratory and inspires others to do their best work

Second Quarter Leadership Award: Richard Glasgow – Resource Conservation, District Manager

The Wicomico County Conservation Distract has recently moved to a new location and Richard's focus and determination during the process has been unwavering. His ability to work cohesively with multiple agencies and contacts to ensure the moving process went as smoothly as possible is truly inspiring to his team. Richard continues to inspire the team by leading by example.  He is clear about what needs to be done and communicates those needs in an effective manner. He strives daily to achieve the organization's goals and mission and remains focused with the workload he is presented with. Richard continues to push his employees to be accountable and always encourages growth.

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Third Quarter Outstanding Performance Award: Karen Fedor- Marketing, Administrator

Karen has been an incredible asset to Marketing over the past two months. The MDA Farmers Market Nutrition Program needed to meet several critical deadlines with the USDA and other partners and would not have met them if Karen had not agreed to jump in and help.  She did this while continuing her other programs which she leads. Karen has provided support and leadership to many programs in Marketing over the years and continues to have a strong positive influence in our programs.

Third Quarter Outstanding Performance Award: Jerel Spence- Resource Conservation, Agricultural Resource Conservation Specialist

Jerry Spence began working in the Charles Soil Conservation District (District) in 2007 and has truly been an asset to this district within the agricultural program and in all areas to which he has been called upon to assist. For several years, Jerry fulfilled all of the MDA agriculture planning duties even during a time period when he was the sole MDA planner at the District. He has carried out additional duties and fulfilled the additional responsibilities related to the MDA conservation tracking system and Cover Crop Program. He effectively assists our agricultural community with the effective promotion of the opportunities available through the Maryland Agricultural Cost-Share Program. Jerry uses his agricultural knowledge and experience to provide valuable on the job training to his fellow District employees. Jerry Spence is truly an asset to MDA and the Charles Soil Conservation District and carries out his duties with a positive attitude and a willingness to take on any project. His talent and commitment make Jerry a very valuable asset no only to MDA but the entire conservation partnership.

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Filed Under: Government, State

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