Tag Archives: Award

Winners of DHEC’s top employee award recognized

Fifteen S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control employees were honored March 23 for embodying the agency’s core values. The Director’s Award, established in 2015, is DHEC’s most prestigious employee award and is presented annually.

This year’s award winners are:

  • Louis Eubank, Certificate of Need program director
  • Jessica Boynton and Matt Slagel, Ocean & Coastal Resource Management
  • Hurricane Matthew GIS Team: Wesley Askew, John Boulware, Seth Church, Elzbieta Covington, Jeannie Eidson, and Emily Watson
  • Agency Rebrand Team from Communications: Mary-Kathryn Craft, Anthony Doyle, Cristi Horne, Joshua Laney, and Sheree Muse
  • Carol Hodges, Marion County nurse site supervisor

Meet the award winners in this video:

The winners were selected from a pool of 45 nominations submitted by colleagues from throughout the agency. The Director’s Award Selection Committee had the difficult task of closely reviewing all of the nominations and choosing the final award winners from the competitive group of nominees.

Read more about the winners and their work here.

Please join the agency in congratulating the winners on their outstanding achievement!

George W. McDaniel Receives 2014 South Carolina Environmental Awareness Award

The state of South Carolina awarded George W. McDaniel, Ph.D. as the winner of the prestigious 2014 South Carolina Environmental Awareness Award.  McDaniel received the award during a ceremony on October 22, 2015.

George W. McDaniel, Ph.D. (center) receives the 2014 South Carolina Environmental Awareness Award at a ceremony on October 22, 2015.

George W. McDaniel, Ph.D. (center) receives the 2014 South Carolina Environmental Awareness Award at a ceremony on October 22, 2015.

A Legacy of Preservation and Conservation

McDaniel is the former executive director of Drayton Hall, a position he held for 26 years.  An 18th century plantation on the Ashley River, Drayton Hall is owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and managed by the Drayton Hall Preservation Trust.

Drayton Hall with Ashley River in the background along with the uplands and march conserved by Drayton Hall.

Drayton Hall with Ashley River in the background along with the uplands and march conserved by Drayton Hall.

During his tenure as executive director, McDaniel created collaborative partnerships and led initiatives that positively influenced the integrity of the Ashley River region and ecosystem. He is now recognized as a local, state and national leader for his efforts in pioneering what is now referred to as “whole place preservation,” the combination of environmental conservation and historic preservation.

Of his many achievements, McDaniel led efforts to have the Ashley River designated as a State Scenic River and is a founding member of the Ashley Scenic River Advisory Council. He has helped to conserve the tranquil natural environment and habitat surrounding not just Drayton Hall, but also around other historic sites along the river. He has raised awareness among thousands of people about the importance and interconnection of historic and environmental conservation through his speaking engagements, education initiatives, innovative tours of Drayton Hall,  and published works.

An excerpt from his nomination:
“He realized that, in the Lowcountry and elsewhere in the nation, humans and the environment have interacted over the centuries, and have changed and been changed by one another, so that what we see today is the result of that interrelationship. If we lose either the historical or the natural environment, then we have lost a critical link to our past and a connection to our future.”

An Award of Excellence

The S.C. Environmental Awareness Award was established by the S.C. General Assembly during the 1992 legislative session to recognize outstanding contributions made toward the protection, conservation, and improvement of South Carolina’s natural resources.

Each year the public is invited to submit nominations that are then reviewed by an awards committee. In judging nominees, the committee considers excellence in innovation, leadership and accomplishments that influence positive changes affecting the natural environment.

Members of the awards committee represent the S.C. Forestry Commission, S.C. Department of Natural Resources, S.C. Sea Grant Consortium and S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Previous winners of the Environmental Awareness Award include:

2013 – Joseph R. Hamilton, Founder of the Quality Deer Management Association
2012 – Thomas Kester, Chairman and Treasurer for the Conestee Foundation
2011 – Dr. Patricia J. DeCoursey, Professor of Biological Sciences at USC
2010 – Frank S. Holleman, III, President, Naturaland Trust
2009 – Dr. Fred Holland, Coastal Ecologist, Charleston
2008 – Benjamin Ziegler, Chairman, Pee Dee Land Trust
2007 – Dr. Richard Porcher, Jr., Professor Emeritus, The Citadel
2006 – Rick Huffman, Founder, South Carolina Native Plant Society
2004 – John L. Knott, Jr., President, Noisette Company, North Charleston
2003 – Burris Family, Owners, Cypress Bay Plantation Tree Farm, Beaufort
2002 – Dr. Jack Turner, Director, Watershed Ecology Center, Univ. of South Carolina
2001 – James D. Elliott, Jr., Founder, South Carolina Center for Birds of Prey
2000 – Dr. Dave Hargett, Conservationist, Greenville
1999 – Kenneth Strickland, Environmentalist, Florence
1998 – Yancey A. McLeod, Jr., Environmental Educator, Eastover
1997 – Brad Wyche, President, Friends of the Reedy River, Greenville
1996 – Beaufort County Clean Water Task Force
1995 – Dr. Whitfield Gibbons, Senior Research Ecologist, Savannah River Ecology Laboratory
1994 – Marion Burnside, Chairman, SC Department of Natural Resources
1993 – Dana Beach, Executive Director, SC Coastal Conservation League
1992 – Rudy Mancke, Naturalist, SC Educational Television

Pee Dee Region’s Breastfeeding Peer Counselors Reach the Gold

By Mary-Kathryn Craft

S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Women Infants and Children (WIC) Breastfeeding Peer Counselors in the Pee Dee Region recently received national recognition for their exceptional work. The team, led by WIC Program Manager Sadhana Tolani and Breastfeeding Coordinator Jenna Deaver, was awarded the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Loving Support of Excellence Gold Award.

The honor recognizes local WIC agencies that provide exemplary breastfeeding promotion and support activities. The Pee Dee program was one of six selected in the Southeast.

WIC Program Manager Sadhana Tolani and Breastfeeding Coordinator Jenna Deaver

WIC Breastfeeding Coordinator Jenna Deaver and Program Manager Sadhana Tolani

“Our ultimate goal is to empower women by giving them the support they need to overcome the physical, emotional and social stigma barriers to breastfeeding their infants,” Deaver said. “This award reinforces the importance of our daily efforts and inspires our team to continue delivering excellent service to new mothers at a time when they most need that one-on-one support.”

Breastfeeding is important because it improves health by protecting moms and babies from a variety of diseases. It is also an effective way to fight childhood obesity. That’s why promoting and encouraging breastfeeding is a key focus in WIC.

The Pee Dee Region’s WIC program was specifically recognized for its partnerships with area hospitals. The program has agreements with more than 10 hospitals throughout the region enabling peer counselors to visit postpartum moms at bedsides to offer breastfeeding information and assistance. The counselors then provide follow-up support in home visits and at clinics.

WIC breastfeeding peer counselors are mothers who have successfully breastfed at least one baby and serve as mentors to new mothers who want to nurse. Tolani said the award was a great morale boost to staff and is the result of the hard work the WIC team has put in since the Loving Support breastfeeding peer counselor program began a decade ago.

Pee Dee Region Breastfeeding Peer Counselors (Left to Right): Shalandra Douglas, Connie Palmer, Jeanetta Dean, Corey Johnson, Tremelia Gore, Priscilla Moyd-McFadden and Renee’ Walker-Andrews

Pee Dee Region Breastfeeding Peer Counselors (Left to Right): Shalandra Douglas, Connie Palmer, Jeanetta Dean, Corey Johnson, Tremelia Gore, Priscilla Moyd-McFadden and Renee’ Walker-Andrews

Congratulations to this dedicated group of DHEC employees in the Pee Dee!

Hope Ramsey Recognized for Exemplary Service

By Cassandra Harris

for blog post

S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control employee Hope Ramsey joined a small group of her peers last month for a public service recognition lunch with Governor Nikki Haley. Director of the agency’s Accounts Receivable Division, Ramsey was recognized for her outstanding leadership, teamwork, and customer service.

A valued member of our Budget and Finance Management team, Ramsey recently played a pivotal role in the roll-out and rewriting of the new private pay system—making it easier and more user-friendly to operate. The automated private pay system was developed to put into place more effective internal controls for the receipting and financial reporting of monies taken in by our programs at each health department site statewide. Both preventative controls and detective controls have been incorporated into the automated private pay system. In addition, she was involved in the integration testing of the system, training DHEC staff from across the state on how to use new application.

When asked about her work at DHEC, Ramsey said— “I enjoy working and leading my current team. I take pride in the work that we do. I love my job. Enjoying what you do makes it a lot easier to get up and come to work every morning.”

Holding over 16 years of experience at the agency, Ramsey started with DHEC as a Fiscal Tech I, working in various positions to her current role as division director. An exemplary team leader, Ramsey leads by example, setting strong standards and values for her team.

Thanks to Ramsey and all of the members of our Accounts Receivable Division team for your continued efforts to help serve our agency and the state.

DHEC Drug Control Inspector Wins J.P. Strom Award

By Betsy Crick

J P Strom

Pictured above: Hubert Harrell, Director of the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy; Inspector Heather Diebold, Bureau of Drug Control; and Pam Hucks, Bureau of Drug Control Coastal District Director.

One of our DHEC Drug Control Inspectors, Heather Diebold, won the prestigious J.P. Strom award at her graduation from the Law Enforcement Academy on July 17.  Inspector Diebold received the J.P. Strom award from Director Harrell of the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy during the graduation ceremony of Basic Law Class 634.  The Basic Law class is an intensive 12-week course to become a certified Class 1 Law Enforcement Officer.

The J.P. Strom Award is given to the student in each class who attains the highest cumulative academic score for all unit tests. A minimum 96% average must be achieved in order to qualify for the award.

For more information about DHEC’s Bureau of Drug Control, please visit our website.