|ODFW Northwest Region Employee of the Year recipient, Doug Kitchen on the Willamette River by Willamette Falls.
CLACKAMAS – At a regional meeting for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) Northwest Region Staff Tuesday, June 19, twelve awards were presented to employees who exemplified superior performance throughout the year and two awards went to volunteers.
“I’m very proud of the Northwest Region staff and the excellent work they accomplish,” says Chris Wheaton, ODFW Northwest Region Manager. “The individuals recognized are leaders among our team. They all share a common trait; they believe in ODFW’s mission and live it every day.”
ODFW Northwest Region Employee of the Year recipient, Doug Kitchen on the Willamette River by Willamette Falls.
Employee of the Year was awarded to Doug Kitchen, Northwest Region Maintenance Technician. Doug’s performance of a variety of responsibilities including maintenance as well as wildlife and fish management duties has made him a source of knowledge among employees. Doug uses his mild and encouraging approach to share his expertise with staff and volunteers. He maintains a positive attitude and is endlessly reliable.
Manager of the Year was presented to Greg Grenbemer of Marion Forks Hatchery. His strong work ethic and interest in public outreach set excellent examples for his team. His leadership during the Puzzle Creek fire which threatened hatchery staff and over 900,000 fish is a shining example of his commitment and dedication.
Team of the Year was awarded to the Corvallis Research Lab. The staff at the Corvallis Fish Research Lab has demonstrated exceptional achievement and teamwork in support of service to the community as well as maintaining a positive, team oriented approach in cooperative projects. The results achieved from their projects showed perseverance, dedication and flexibility.
Biologist of the Year was presented to Steve Johnson from the Newport Field office. Steve has been a cornerstone of fish monitoring and research projects in the Northwest Region within the Oregon Plan for Salmon and Watershed Program. He goes beyond the call of duty by identifying and implementing new projects or improving existing protocol such as an improvement made earlier this year that resulted in a significant fuel savings that also had a positive impact on safety.
Support Services Persons of the Year were presented to Marty Winkler and Ann Keimig at the Springfield Office. With population increases in the Springfield area, Marty and Ann have stayed on top of the additional interest in fish and wildlife from the public. They keep a smile on their face as they help members of the public with a wide range of fish and wildlife questions as well as finding the time to complete large projects between customers.
Safety Person of the Year was awarded to Joyce Mahr , Fisheries Technician at Oregon Hatchery Research Center (OHRC). Joyce was recognized for her work in developing her new role as Safety Officer at OHRC. Joyce was also instrumental in ensuring safety in the design and creating emergency plans and procedures for new systems.
Seasonal of the Year was presented to Matt Hutchinson in the North Willamette Fish District. Matt’s fresh perspective and eagerness to learn earned him additional opportunities within the district that eventually led to him taking on a leadership role among seasonals.
Wildlife Technicians of the Year were awarded to Jack Woods and Jim Rempel. During the elk capture and relocation project at Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area, Jack’s commitment to wildlife led to him altering his schedule so that he could transport elk at night to reduce stress on the animals. He also uses his expertise to assist ODFW staff in other parts of the region.
Jim has spent over twenty years as a technician at Sauvie Island Wildlife Area. Jim has proven to be a great innovator by building a variety of resources on the wildlife area to make it more enjoyable to the public. He also uses his problem solving skills to maintain a wide variety of machinery on Sauvie Island Wildlife Area that has resulted in a significant savings for the agency.
Fisheries Technician of the Year was presented to Bruce Dahne at McKenzie Hatchery. Bruce makes the maintenance of the facility and the safety of the employees a priority. He is very adaptable and takes advantage of learning opportunities so that he can constantly increase his contributions to the Hatchery.
Special Recognition Inside ODFW was awarded to Miriam Hulst, Western Oregon Land Owner Incentive Program Biologist. Miriam excelled in establishing the news, complex federal sensitive species program. Her efforts helped to make Oregon a recognized leader in the Land Owner Incentive Program throughout the Nation.
Special Recognition Outside ODFW was presented to the Tualatin Valley Chapter of the Northwest Steelheaders. The Tualatin Valley Chapter of the Northwest Steelheaders have helped with numerous youth fishing events, stream enrichment, broodstock collection, fixing boat slides, planting trees, river cleanups and the classroom eggs to fry program. They have been integral in cleanup and restoration efforts at many ODFW access sites which involved removal of invasive blackberries and ivy and planting of hundreds of trees.
Volunteer Individual of the Year was awarded to Don Wenzel of Corvallis. Don has donated countless hours to the South Willamette Watershed District Office in Corvallis. He is proactive and willing to help out even on the projects that require one to get dirty. Last year, he assisted the building of a disabled angler access platform at Adair Pond by organizing the volunteers and supervising their work