NALFO Legislative Staff Achievement Awards

2/2/2022

About the Awards

The 2022 NALFO Staff Achievement Award nomination period is now open! Each year, the National Association of Legislative Fiscal Offices (NALFO) invites nominations for the NCSL annual Legislative Staff Achievement Awards. Each NCSL professional staff association may give up to two awards to recognize outstanding staff. Nominate legislative fiscal staff for the awards by Friday, May 6, 2022. Nominations can be for individuals, project teams or entire offices.

A letter of nomination, plus two additional letters of support, and any additional supporting materials are encouraged, and should describe and document how the nominee has met one or more of the criteria noted below. Letters of nomination and support can be offered by legislators, peers, or other legislative staff.

A panel of NALFO officers will review the nominations based only upon the materials received, therefore the submission of examples and sufficient documentation to assess a nominee’s contributions is imperative. Nominations for the awards can fall into three categories, and the criteria for each category are below:

  1. The nominee has made a significant contribution to the resolution of a fiscal or public policy issue before the state legislature.
  2. The nominee, over time, has consistently demonstrated a high degree of professionalism and excellence in a body of work or career that warrants special recognition. It is recommended that nominees in this category have at least 10 years of experience working with state legislatures. 
  3. The nominee has made other unique contributions in promoting and developing the role of legislative fiscal staff assistance in the legislative process.

Please email your submission to Erica MacKellar or mail your submission to:


Erica MacKellar
7700 East First Place
Denver, CO 80230

If you have questions about the criteria or the awards process, please contact Erica MacKellar at NCSL.

NALFO Legislative Staff Achievement Award Winners

2021

The Workforce Program Review Team, Office of Fiscal and Management Analysis (OFMA), Legislative Services Agency, Indiana

The Workforce Program Review Team has been charged by the Indiana legislature with an in-depth examination of state workforce programs. Over the past three interims, the Team has successfully developed a schedule of 54 state workforce programs to review over the course of five years. The Team has already tackled some of the largest programs in terms of funding and populations served. For 2020, the team reviewed eight programs with total biennial expenditures of $524 million, serving an average of 284,600 participants on an annual basis.

Conducting these reviews has required analysis of large and complex data sets, and the team was able to successfully accomplish this, while also pivoting research questions to reflect the challenges faced by program administrators during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The team’s work has resulted in significant findings for the Indiana General Assembly. Additionally, the data analysis work has expanded the research and analytical capabilities the OFMA that have been used in other fiscal research.   

Tom Davis, Budget Director, Senate Majority Policy Office (SMPO), Michigan

Tom joined the Michigan Senate Majority Policy Office in 2004, bringing a wealth of experience in a broad range of policy areas including higher education, the capital outlay process, local government and transportation. Tom previously worked as the Chief of Staff for the Appropriations Committee Chair, providing guidance on the complex Michigan budget. Legislators, staff and members of the community all seek out Tom’s advice for this vast knowledge the budget process.

Among his staff, Tom is respected for his team-first approach, and greatly admired for his leadership. He strives to help staff build confidence in budget policy areas and political astuteness, providing staff with the opportunity to participate in the appropriations process.

Tom is celebrated for his distinguished service in the Senate Majority Policy Office, and his invaluable knowledge of the Michigan legislature and appropriations process.

2020

Don Richards, budget and fiscal administrator, Wyoming

Chloe Wexler, fiscal data anaylst, Vermont

2019

Patrick Goldsmith, House Fiscal Division, Louisiana  

2018

Joel Michael and Steve Hinze, House Research Office, Minnesota

Stephanie Morrison and Sam Schaefer, Legislative Fiscal Division, Montana

2017

Christopher Woods, Budget Director, Office of the Speaker, California Assembly

2016

Tax Incentive Review Team, Office of Fiscal Management, Legislative Services Agency, Indiana

Martha Wigton, Director, House Budget and Research Office, Georgia

2015

Ryan Miller, Principal Fiscal and Policy Analyst, Legislative Analyst’s Office, California

John Rohrer, Coordinator, Office of Policy Analysis, Department of Legislative Services, Maryland

2014

Norris Green, Director, Alabama Legislative Fiscal Office

Russell Frandsen, Analyst, Office of the Utah Legislative Fiscal Analyst

2013  

David J. Rosen, Ph.D., Legislative Budget and Finance Officer for the New Jersey Office of Legislative Services

Amanda Bickel, Chief Legislative Analyst, and Steve Allen, Senior Legislative Analyst, Colorado Joint Budget Committee

2012

Sarah Franklin, Senior Research Associate, Legislative Research Unit, Illinois

2011

John O’Brien Director, Legislative Budget Board, Texas

Cathy Higgins, House Budget Analysis Director, Office of Legislative Budget Analysis, Tennessee

2010

William Marx, Chief Fiscal Analyst, House of Representatives, Minnesota

Taryn Purdy, Principal Fiscal Analyst, Legislative Fiscal Division, Montana

2009

David Abbey, Director, Legislative Finance Committee, New Mexico

Sharon Reynolds Ferland, Deputy Fiscal Advisor, House of Representatives, Rhode Island

2008

Hadley Johnson, Jr., Deputy Legislative Analyst, Legislative Analyst's Office, California

Property Tax Team, Office of Fiscal and Management Analysis, Legislative Services Agency, Indiana

2007

Richard E. Hickman, Jr., Deputy Staff Director, Senate Finance Committee, Virginia

2006

Kevin Madigan, Deputy Senate Fiscal Advisor, Senate Fiscal Office, Rhode Island

Gary Karger, Fiscal Analyst, House Fiscal Analysis Department, Minnesota

2005

James Landers, Senior Fiscal Analyst, Office of Fiscal and Management Analysis, Legislative Services Agency, Indiana

Dennis Prouty, Director, Legislative Services Agency, Iowa

2004

Terry Johnson, Principal Fiscal Analyst, Legislative Fiscal Agency, Montana

Warren G. Deschenaux, Director, Office of Policy Analysis, Department of Legislative Services, Maryland

2003

William G. Black, House of Representatives, Louisiana

Michael Kjar and the Meribah Development Team, Office of the Legislative Fiscal Analyst, Utah

2002

Don Eckhart, Legislative Service Commission, Ohio

Robert Sigalow, Legislative Services Agency, Indiana

2001

Wisconsin Legislative Fiscal Bureau Staff

Cathy Holland-Smith, Fiscal Officer for Legislative Services, Legislative Services Office, Idaho

2000

Alan D. Conroy, Chief Legislative Fiscal Analyst, Legislative Research Department, Kansas

Michigan House Fiscal Agency Video Project -- William Hamilton and Hank Prince

1999

Greta M. Rymal, Assistant Director, Legislative Budget Board, Texas

David Thurman, Senior Budget Specialist, Office of Legislative Budget Analysis, Tennessee

1998

David A. Brunson, Assistant Director, Ohio Legislative Budget Office, Ohio

Jeffrey Youtz, Supervisor, Legislative Budget & Policy Analysis, Idaho

1997

Catherine Benham, Associate Fiscal Officer, Joint Fiscal Office, Vermont

Alfred J. Ferguson, Assistant Executive Director, House Committee on Appropriations, Pennsylvania