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Meet the 2020 5-Star Award Winners

Pamela Karwowski, Harford Community College

Nominated by Joe Ricci, Pam spearheaded a collaboration between SWN and HCC to deliver an IT/Cyber training program. After three successful programs, we were developing a fourth program to run in 2020 when the pandemic hit, causing normal operations to come to a grinding halt. In the midst of the pandemic, Pam’s determination, resourcefulness and coordination helped the IT/Cyber training program be converted from classroom to completely online with a successful start in late May.  This is indicative of the great relationship SWN has experienced with both Pam and the Community College over many years and a true testament to her standards of excellence and spirit of service.

Karen Auten, Maryland Department of Rehabilitation, MSDE

Nominated by Karen Reed, Karen has shown great teamwork over the year, contributing much hard work and dedication to the success of many workforce system customers. Karen always remains cheerful, upbeat and positive even when we were faced with difficult barriers.  Additionally, Karen is organized and efficient and always worked hard for the betterment of our customers.  We are fortunate to have the opportunity to work with such talent. Karen is a positive contribution to the workforce system and she deserves our recognition and appreciation for a job well done.

Claude Cornett, Department of Social Services – Cecil

Nominated by the Susquehanna Workforce Center in Elkton, Claude works with individuals in Cecil County and helps them to return to work. He is a frequent presence at the workforce center in Elkton, gathering information on current job openings and upcoming events, helping his customers sign up for job seminars offered by the workforce center, and encouraging his customers to pursue WIOA-funded education and training options. With his focus on collaboration and customer service, Claude is changing lives for the better every day.

Tina Durborow, Cecil College

Nominated by Kim Justus, Tina is a great asset to the workforce system because she not only helps students enroll in training that will lead them to a family-supporting transportation job, she helps them successfully complete training, and find positions with employers who meets their needs. Tina responds quickly to any questions or concerns and is always open to finding the best way to help people move forward and improve their quality of life. In this way, Tina is a major force in helping people across Cecil and Harford Counties change their lives for the better.

Shelly Heller, Department of Social Services – Harford

Nominated by the staff at the Susquehanna Workforce Center – Swan Creek: Shelly Heller is an advocate for Foster Care Youth in Harford County and a member of the Susquehanna Youth Committee. She supports the Compass programs, which focus on youth successfully leaving the foster care system with adequate support. She also expertly guides youth and young adults through the workforce System so they can find training, or employment. Shelly is a strong and compassionate navigator for young adults and is making an enormous impact on the workforce system in Harford County.

Robert Limpert, Harford County Public Schools

Nominated by Terri Kearney: Rob Limpert serves as the Supervisor of the Magnet & CTE Programs for HCPS. He works hard to create a bridge between the students of Harford County and workforce opportunities. Rob is an active WIOA partner who volunteers his time as a speaker/panelist at events and Symposia hosted by the State of MD, Dept. of Labor and the local Workforce Board. Rob also contributes to many efforts, including some in conjunction with Aberdeen Proving Ground, to increase opportunities for students to prepare for future employment. Rob cares deeply about his work and our community greatly appreciates his advocacy on behalf of Harford County students.

Jaime Madison, Maryland Department of Labor

Nominated by Greg Adams: Jaime is a highly dedicated wealth of information for all clients entering the workforce system. She consistently goes out of her way to remove barriers and provide resources to clients. Jaime has cultivated an extremely strong knowledge of local resources and programs, and serves as an expert in this area for clients and other staff in the center. Jaime has also developed relationships with a variety of community organizations that facilitate seamless service delivery within the larger community. Jaime’s customer service is exemplary, and she regularly receives written and verbal comments from clients to that effect. Most importantly, Jaime consistently demonstrates that it matters far less who serves the client or how, as long as they are served well.

Len Parrish, Harford Office of Community & Economic Development

Nominated by Bruce England: The Susquehanna workforce system greatly benefits from Len’s keen insight into the impact of workforce considerations on business and economic growth in Harford County. A leader of many collaborative efforts among community and workforce development organizations, Len spearheaded co-locating the workforce center with Harford County’s Office of Community and Economic Development, which has had a tremendous impact on our ability to serve the community. Len works across governmental, community and private sector organizations in an effective and collaborative manner that produces results. We are grateful for his leadership and vision.

Joe Ricci, Susquehanna Workforce Network

Nominated by Sandy and Joan, one-stop operators for the Susquehanna workforce system: Joe Reach-e understands the need for the WIOA organizations to work as a unified team, and his actions are always been in support of helping to realize the WIOA vision of a seamless system of support for clients. He connects people and approaches client service from an all-hands, no-walls perspective. He actively supports all SWIP functions by his top-level participations and has generously shared his skills as a strategic thinker, communicator, and creative problem solver with the system. Thank you Joe!

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