Parks Salutes Its Employees Of The MonthLouis Cabezas and Daniel Murphy are the Operations Employees of the Month for September.
Officer Cabezas has been with Parks since November 2006 and Officer Murphy has been with Parks since 2008. Both are Parks Enforcement Patrol Officers with the Urban Park Service.
PEP officers provide security and safety to Parks patrons; offer information about Parks rules and regulations; and protect Parks wildlife, facilities, and the public. Their uniformed presence provides the public with a highly visible and identifiable resource at concerts, pools, beaches, recreation centers, parks, athletic events, and other special events throughout the five boroughs. Shielded Parks Enforcement Patrol officers are empowered to enforce quality of life regulations, issue summonses for violations, and make arrests.
At 5:20 a.m. on the morning of September 22, while Officers Cabezas and Murphy were opening up Pier 25, a young woman ran towards them screaming that she had been sexually assaulted. Officer Cabezas and his partner wrapped the victim in a blanket and placed her in their patrol vehicle while Officer Murphy took off in pursuit of the suspect across the West Side Highway. The victim told the officers that earlier she had been sitting on a park bench at Pier 25. An assailant approached her and tried to start a conversation and then proceeded to attack her. Officers Murphy and Cabezas, accompanied by Sgt. Cruz, canvassed the area until NYPD arrived. They discovered the suspect hiding in some nearby bushes. The suspect was arrested and taken to the 1st Precinct for processing. The young victim was transported to Beth Israel Hospital.
The actions of these officers were instrumental in apprehending the suspect and in providing assistance and relief to the victim immediately after the crime occurred. Their courage and quick thinking brought well-deserved words of praise from elected officials, the media, and the public, and clearly demonstrated the value and importance of the Parks Enforcement Patrol.
In his free time, Officer Murphy plays softball on four different teams. He's a big Mets and Giants fan and attends games whenever he can. He got engaged this past September and expects to be married next October.
Officer Cabezas enjoys fishing and reading in his spare time.
For their extraordinary efforts and valuable service, Officer Cabezas and Officer Murphy were nominated by Assistant Commissioner Michael Dockett and First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh.
Jean Paul Rodriguez is Capital Projects’ Employee of the Month for September.
Paul began his career at Parks in 2007 as a Landscape Architect Intern in the Requirements Unit. He is now a designer for the Playground Requirements Unit.
Paul is a skilled multi-tasker who prioritizes his work assignments carefully to meet or exceed his construction deadlines in a timely manner. He is organized and methodical in his design work for the RCU Team.
He has a calm and patient demeanor and is careful in all of his work assignments. Paul is also a great listener which helps him to grasp both the small details and the big picture.
In April 2012 Paul was asked to “fast track” the Unit’s PDC submission for the installation of outdoor Adult Fitness Equipment in John Jay Park. He performed this unexpected assignment quickly and efficiently, meeting all deadlines and advancing the project.
The reconstruction of the dog run at Carl Schurz Park is another example of Paul’s ability to ensure that this delicate and sensitive project fit within the context of a historic park. The project entailed submissions to PDC and community boards.
Paul has played a crucial role in numerous other significant projects, including the Reconstruction of Dewitt Clinton Park sitting area and dog run, the Highbridge Park dog run, and improvements to Lower East Side Community Gardens. While working on these projects, he engaged participation of community-based groups to provide valuable input and helped Parks gain community board approval.
Paul has an outstanding ability to manage priorities set by the Director and the Borough and work towards the best design solution. Paul’s commitment to his work comes in part from his upbringing in the Clinton neighborhood of Manhattan (aka Hell’s Kitchen). He knows the parks and playgrounds of the west side intimately and understands the value that they add to the community. Paul is a team player and easily shares his experiences, which is a valuable asset in a work environment that can sometimes be hectic.
Paul is recently married and we wish him and his new wife all the best in the future.
For his conscientiousness and dedication, Paul was nominated by RCU Design Director Claire M. Dudley and Deputy Commissioner Therese Braddick.
Gregorio Morales is the Commissioner’s Employee of the Month for September.
Gregorio started his career at Parks in 2009 as the Deputy Director of Policy Analysis and Fiscal Management for the Parks Opportunity Program. In the three years he has been with Parks, Gregorio has already left his mark on the POP Program by increasing services to JTPs through developing the capacity and ability to record client outcomes.
Gregorio is currently the Director of Field Operations, where he oversees POP’s Field and Client Services staff. His ability to understand the intricacies of POP’s role within the agency has led him to develop innovative systems, such as the POP database, which have improved how POP operates. His pursuit of increased information management has impacted hiring, service provision and job placement.
Gregorio is perceptive, personable and approachable. He has an insatiable thirst for knowledge and is passionate about delivering much needed services to New Yorkers. These attributes ensure that he is successful in creating the change he envisions. He recently demonstrated this in his involvement with the recreation center user survey.
In an effort to better understand the way New Yorkers use Parks’ outdoor and indoor facilities, a task force was assembled to determine the reason for the decline in recreation center membership and increase in visitor usage. Over the past two weeks this team developed and embarked upon a plan to assess customer feedback, the membership fee structure, fitness equipment improvement, and Capital needs. Gregorio’s role was instrumental in this process. His background in statistical analysis and survey methodology was essential to the task force’s successful execution of its goals.
A native of Texas, Gregorio has an MPA from Baruch College's School of Public Affairs and a BA from Florida State University. He is currently a CORO fellow. Though he has spent time studying, working, volunteering, and traveling on six continents, he is proud to call New York City home.
For his initiative and insight, Gregorio was nominated by Chief of POP Liza Ehrlich, Deputy Commissioner Robert Garafola, and Commissioner Veronica White.
“Poverty cannot deprive us of many consolations. It cannot rob us of the affection we have for each other, or degrade us in our own opinion, of in that of any person, whose opinion we ought to value.”
(1764 - 1823)