DUNMORE — Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Secretary Leslie S. Richards announced 30 department employees received the agency’s Star of Excellence Award, PennDOT’s highest recognition.
Two employees from PennDOT’s District 4, which represents Lackawanna, Luzerne, Pike, Susquehanna, Wayne and Wyoming counties were among the honorees.
Local winners, Christopher Rood, of Jermyn and Jeffrey Pallo, of Clarks Summit, Civil Engineers in the Bridge Unit were honored at an awards luncheon at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg.
According to PennDOT, it’s vital that maintenance storage buildings be kept in sound condition to ensure the safety of employees.
Rood worked with Pallo to develop an innovative plan for completing the engineering work in-house, allowing the Facilities Manager to submit the required permit package to the Department of Labor & Industry, acquire approval in less than 30 days, and turn the permit over to the County Bridge Crew for the repair work. To date, 15 buildings have been repaired and reopened as a result of Rood’s innovative thinking. In the past two years, Rood provided 15 repair designs for maintenance facilities, saving the department approximately $75,000 in design charges. In addition, the use of County Maintenance Crews for the actual repair work reduced costs by $225,000 to $300,000.
In the past two years, Pallo provided five repair designs for maintenance facilities, saving the department approximately $25,000 in design charges. In addition, the use of County Maintenance Crews for the actual repair work reduced costs by $50,000 to $75,000.
The Star of Excellence Awards are presented annually to employees who represent the department’s values of service, performance and integrity. The recipients represent a variety of organizational positions, spanning from highway maintenance and driver and vehicle services workers, to traffic control specialists, communications staff and design and engineering specialists.