Legislative Staff Achievement Award - RACSS
The Legislative Staff Achievement Award was instituted in 1997 by the Legislative Staff Coordinating Committee, as a means for the ten NCSL staff sections to annually recognize legislative staff or offices that have demonstrated excellence in supporting the work of a state legislature and strengthening the legislative institution, and in contributing to the work of NCSL. The awards have added meaning in that they are bestowed by the recipients’ peers through each of the ten staff sections and the NCSL Staff Chair.
Award Criteria for RACSS
There are two criteria for bestowing the Legislative Staff Achievement Award from the Research and Committee Staff Section:
First, in the staff member's service to their legislature, they must have:
- Exhibited a high degree of professionalism, competence, and integrity in serving their legislature and the public
- Helped to improve the effectiveness of the legislative institution
- Supported the legislative process and the mission of the legislature
Second, the staff member must be or have been an active member of the Research and Committee Staff Section and contributed to the work of the staff section, through participation in RACSS activities. Such activities include, but are not limited to attending RACSS meetings, serving as faculty for RACSS programs, contributing to the newsletter, serving on committees or serving as a staff section officer.
RACSS Award Process
The current RACSS Chair shall select three members of the staff section at large to serve on the Awards Committee. Members are traditionally past recipients of the award or past officers.
The Awards Committee shall solicit nominations for the Legislative Staff Achievement Award through an announcement in the Spring and/or Summer edition of the RACSS Newsletter or through an announcement emailed to all members of the staff section. The Awards Committee shall evaluate all nominees for the award, based on the criteria shown above, regarding service to a legislature and participation in RACSS. The Awards Committee shall select no more than two nominees for the award and submit their names to the RACSS Executive Committee for final approval of the award recipients.
If accepted by the RACSS Executive Committee, the two nominees shall be deemed the recipients of the Legislative Staff Achievement Award for that year, and shall be presented their awards at the NCSL Annual Meeting. Should the RACSS Executive Committee reject a nominee, the RACSS Executive Committee and the Awards Committee shall jointly evaluate all nominees for the award and select two recipients, based on the criteria listed above, regarding service to a legislature and participation in RACSS. Each member of the RACSS Executive Committee and the Awards Committee shall have one vote. The two nominees receiving the highest number of votes shall be selected. In the case of a tie, the RACSS Chair shall make a final decision.
- David Ortbahn, South Dakota
- Guy Cherry, Maryland
- Pat O'Grady, Illinois
- Jamie Jo Franklin, Kentucky
- Terry Sullivan, North Carolina (retired)
- Dan Chapman, Colorado
- Mike Nugent, Idaho
- Mary Janicki, Connecticut
- Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel, Utah. Citizens Guide Project Team Members: Brian Allred, Susan Creager Allred, Mark Andrews, Emily Brown, Spencer Burton, Arek Butler, Esther Chelsea-McCarthy, Ben Christensen, Phil Dean, Cathy Dupont, John Fellows, Shannon Halverson, Brett Hopper, Bryant Howe, Jerry Howe, Art Hunsaker, Dee Larsen, Jeanenne Larson, Jami Momberger, Rich North, Nina Norton, Patricia Owen, Robert Rees, Rebecca Rockwell, Stewart Smith, Connie Steffen, Mark Steinagel, Joseph Wade, Eric Weeks, and James Wilson
- Sheila Mason, Kentucky
- Electronic Bill Book Project Team, House Office of Program Research, Washington. Research Team Members: Charlie Gavigan, Dave Knutson, Bob Longman, and Cara Shipley
- Virgil Puskarich, Pennsylvania (posthumously)
- David Sallach, New Jersey
- Bryant Howe, Utah
- Kirk Mlinek, Colorado
- Terry Anderson, Wisconsin
- Bob Erickson, Nevada
- Karl Aro, Maryland
- Richard Strong, Utah (retired)
- Sandy Deaton, Kentucky
- Darrell Jackson, Missouri
- Diane Bolender, Iowa
- David Hite, Colorado
- Larry Barish, Wisconsin
- Allan Green, Connecticut
- Joyce Honaker, Kentucky
- Carvel Payne, Maryland (retired)