Parks Salutes Its Employees Of The Month (Part 2)
Joyce Johnson, is an Operations Employee of the Month for April. Joyce is a Purchasing Liaison and has been with Parks since June, 1975. She is currently responsible for the oversight and spending of the OTPS budget for the borough of Brooklyn. She has such a thorough understanding of her position that she can quote accurate budget figures off the top of her head. Fortunately, that information is not just in her head. She has also developed a meticulous record keeping and tracking system that is invaluable to the borough.
Joyce has frequently been asked to review her accounting records and give financial reports on the status of the borough’s budget conditions. In several instances Joyce was asked to pull information together under tight deadlines and she did so efficiently, accurately and without hesitation. Joyce is always available to explain and review purchasing and never shies away from a tough question.
She has dedicated 37 years of service to the Parks Department and continues to excel at her job, adapting to changes as they come without negativity or hesitation. Joyce is someone that each of us could learn from and we’re lucky to have her here at Parks. For her efforts, Joyce was nominated by Brooklyn Chief of Administrative Services Candice Jager, Borough Commissioner Kevin Jeffrey, and First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh.
Juan Cortes is an Operations Employee of the Month for May. Juan is a Park Supervisor Level 1 and has been with Parks since May, 2001. Juan began with Parks as a CPW and was stepped up several times before being promoted to Park Supervisor in 2005. He is currently the only supervisor in Manhattan District 15 and is responsible for the oversight of the East River Esplanade, stretching all the way from East 36th to East 124th Street.
With a somewhat small crew of 3 full-time staff and a number of JTPs, Juan manages a large site stretching over 5 miles. He has consistently achieved a 100% cleanliness rating for his district. He inspires his staff and JTPs to work at maximum productivity levels. Even when Juan is out for a day, his staff members are well trained and knowledgeable in precisely what has to be done. He runs an extremely well organized operation and is not afraid to get his own hands dirty picking up litter, pulling cans and bottles from garbage, or removing debris from the Esplanade. For his dedication, Juan was nominated by Park Regional Manager Mark Vaccaro, Borough Commissioner William Castro, and First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh.
Anthony Park is an Operations Employee of the Month for May. Anthony is a Project Manager and has been with Parks since January, 2010. Anthony currently works in the Capital Projects division of the Five Boro Technical Services unit. He oversees contracts related to building reconstruction, plumbing, pools, utilities and guide rails. He also prepares change orders, contract overrun letters, time extensions, progress reports, and meeting minutes for all of his contracts. As if that were not enough, he also assists the Engineers with their drawings.
Anthony has spearheaded the Agency’s Text-On program, which allows cell phone text message control of ball field lighting for permit holders. He has aided in numerous Five Boro Sustainability projects such as the Green Roof and the Hydroponics system. Anthony has worked with contractors, NYSDOT, and other Capital units to ensure a smooth flow of sewage from FMCP Boathouse to the Pump house. His efforts have been instrumental to the Fort Greene Sewer connection, the East River Fire Boathouse, and the Cedar Grove Beach Sewer and Water capping projects.
Anthony has persistently gone the extra mile to accomplish every task assigned to him. He is willing to do whatever it takes to complete a job even if it means working on weekends. For his commitment to Parks, Anthony was nominated by Director of Five Boro Construction Andrew Aideyan and First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh.
Thomas Ching is the Commissioner’s Employee of the Month for May. Thom is currently the Deputy Chief of Operations for Brooklyn and has been with Parks since October 1989. He began his career at Parks as the Director of Horticulture for the agency. Drawing from his Bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from Cornell and his Master’s in biochemistry from UC Berkeley-Davis, Thom was responsible for establishing citywide policies for horticulture and pesticide application.
In May 2000 he became a Park and Recreation Manager on Manhattan’s East Side, overseeing Districts 6, 8, and 15.
In 2002, Thom was promoted to Deputy Chief of Operations in Brooklyn, where he continues to oversee Brooklyn Forestry and Borough Crews. Thom’s hands-on approach has been a tremendous asset to the borough. He has been a staunch supporter of the Parks Opportunity Program, and has been heavily involved with the recent Green Applied Projects for Parks (“GAPP”) program. Among his many tasks, he also works closely with the Dept. of Health on rodent issues in Brooklyn parks.
In addition, Thom serves as Brooklyn’s Summer Youth Employment Program coordinator. In this role he deftly manages the relationship between Brooklyn worksites and Community Based Organizations to ensure that parks are supplemented with helping hands through the Agency’s busiest season.
For his persistent excellent service and his commitment to raising the level of horticulture across parks throughout his career and, Thom has been nominated by Borough Commissioner Kevin Jeffrey, First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh, and Commissioner Benepe.
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
“My mother told me to be a lady. And for her, that meant be your own person, be independent.”
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
(1933 - )