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Jessica Poole

Jessica Poole has been selected as the 2018 Employee of the Year for her exemplification of dedication to the University and her role as quarterback of the University’s high containment biosafety program. She is a true professional — always giving her best and expecting the best out of all the folks she works with. She handles concerns and issues in a calm, professional manner and has become a subject matter expert in the regulatory requirements related to our high containment program. Jessica demonstrates continuous improvement by seeking innovative ways of conducting required annual training which encourages participation by the labs. She is a perfect example of the EHS motto “Be All You Can Be” and “Strive Towards Excellence.”

History of the Award

The Employee of the Year of Award was started in 2000 in recognition of an employee who met the mission of the organization and whose performance went above the norm. Former director Peter Reinhardt initiated the award. Beginning that first year, a traveling trophy was created and represents the past and future as the base of the trophy is the base of a lamp in the office of the first director of the department, Don Willhoit. The recipient is chosen by the director and emulates the values of the organization.

Core Values of the Department

  • Be a safe haven of trust, respect and open communication.
  • Foster constructive debate when appropriate.
  • Be a resource for new ideas and innovation.
  • Establish state of the art EHS protocols & procedures.
  • Utilize time and resources efficiently.
  • Value and encourage individual growth and development.
  • Collaborate and support each other through the twists and turns.

Hurricane Florence Response and Recovery

Erika England, Mary Crabtree, Cathy Brennan, Steve Parker, and Michael Novitzky

This team went above and beyond their daily responsibilities by supporting the Hurricane Florence response and recovery activities at the UNC-Wilmington campus. Each individual traveled to the site and stayed to assist in EHS response activities. Examples of these activities were initial damage assessment, hazardous waste vendor identification and support of the Emergency Operations Center.

Collaboration Award

In 2010, the department instituted a Collaboraton Award in order to emphasize the department’s core values and to support the attribute of collaboration among EHS employees and between EHS employees and other University employees (or other groups or organizations).

EHS Core Values & Collaboration

  • Value and encourage individual growth and development.
  • Collaborate and support each other through the twists and turns.
  • Be a safe haven of trust, respect, and open communication.
  • Foster constructive debate when appropriate.

Qualifications for the Award

The recipient must exhibit outstanding contribution to collaboration by fulfilling one or more of the following attributes:

  • Agreement about objectives;
  • Respect for specialist expertise of another person;
  • Joint working, shared effort, shared responsibilities;
  • Blurring of professional boundaries (no use of rank in process);
  • Open and transparent lines of communication within groups and between people;
  • Behavior that instills confidence and respect for others;
  • Open and full discussions of all issues (no shortchanging of another person’s idea); and,
  • Empathy for others.