Inslee honors 20 state government managers for outstanding performance

June 12, 2018

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Gov. Jay Inslee today honored 20 state agency managers who have demonstrated outstanding leadership. The 2018 Governor’s Award for Leadership in Management recipients were honored at an awards luncheon at the Executive Residence.

This year’s recipients were recognized for a wide range of accomplishments, including delivering successful major transportation projects, crafting a comprehensive state operating budget to better fund schools, establishing crucial communication avenues to the public and first responders, and supporting the health and safety of individuals and communities while boosting program efficiency, managing risk and maintaining a focus on results-driven government.

“These managers have set priorities and achieved results, managed risk and modeled leadership competencies,” Inslee said. “They and their staffs are responsible stewards of Washington residents’ resources as they serve capably and honorably every day.”

The Leadership in Management program was created in 1985 to recognize state government managers who demonstrate excellent performance. A selection committee composed of agency directors and executive staff chose the winners based on demonstrated performance.

This year’s recipients of the Governor’s Award for Leadership in Management are:

Mike Anbesse, Department of Social and Health Services
Anbesse increased productivity and morale in licensed care facilities that serve vulnerable adults.

Dave Becher, Department of Transportation
Becher led the construction of two landmark state Route 520 bridges on Lake Washington over the past two years, including completion of the west approach bridge north that extends transit/HOV lanes and a regional shared-use path.   

Jim Crawford, Office of Financial Management
Crawford served a major role in building a new, comprehensive funding system for public schools in the 2017–19 state operating budget.   

Lisa Darnell, Department of Ecology
Darnell led the launch of an agency-wide time, leave and labor distribution system that increases efficiency and accurately tracks federal funds. 

Shane Esquibel, Attorney General’s Office
Esquibel oversaw the handling of 50,000 legal matters during 2017 and created a Complex Litigation Unit to handle high-profile cases of great importance to the state.  

Lori Figone, Department of Transportation
Figone initiated the development and implementation of a mentoring program that has grown to include more than 100 employees and is in demand across the sizable agency.  

Marilee Fosbre, Department of Social and Health Services
Fosbre’s efforts improved access and delivery of services to individuals needing help to integrate in community settings.  

Dr. Charissa Fotinos, Health Care Authority
Fotinos was instrumental in creating model systems to increase the state’s capacity to provide treatment to people with opioid use disorder.  

Steven Gill, Department of Veterans Affairs
Gill was key in gaining rule changes so tribal veteran representatives can represent their own members to the federal Veterans Administration.  

David Iseminger, Health Care Authority
Iseminger helped to set up the new School Employee Benefits Board program and oversaw the procurement process for a third-party administrator for the largest public employee’s medical plan.

Chris Lamb, Department of Social & Health Services
Lamb improved IT service s by following a model that sets out clear expectations to meet customer needs.     

Kelly Lindseth, Employment Security Department
Lindseth managed the remodel and technology update of WorkSource facilities and training of staff to better serve more than 100,000 job seekers and employers seeking employees.    

Sarah Peterson, Department of Social and Health Services
Peterson helped create a career ladder to assist highly educated refugees re-enter their profession, used federal stabilization funding to help vulnerable community members stay in their homes and planned a summit on refugee housing needs. 

Sharon Redmond, Department of Social a Health Services
Redmond led her team in reducing the time to establish a right-sized child support order which results in families receiving support sooner and with more reliability.   

Kris Rietmann, Department of Transportation
Rietmann has effectively led multi-agency communications during several emergency response events, including the train derailment near DuPont, and has championed organizational change management throughout the agency.  

David Sorrell, Department of Revenue
Sorrell spearheaded an improvement effort to re-platform the agency’s website that better assists businesses with their licensing and tax obligations and includes mobile-friendly functionality.   

Cheryl Sullivan-Colglazier, Department of Enterprise Services
Sullivan-Colglazier oversaw the design and delivery of mid-management training as a cost recovery model and worked with vendor partners to ensure the most appropriate and useful training is delivered.   

Ann Sweeney, Department of Enterprise Services
Sweeney delivered results on the Capitol Lake/Lower Deschutes watershed planning project, the Tacoma Rhoades Center and North Cascades Gateway Center project, the latter which will result in an ownership transfer to the Port of Skagit on July 1.     

Jonnita Thompson, Department of Labor and Industries
Thompson provided the vision and guidance to improve job satisfaction and morale in several job classes with recruitment and retention issues.   

Scott West, WaTech
West’s ingenuity has brought the agency new customers, financial strength and the ability to visualize the possibilities for technology to benefit agency partners.  

Media Contact 

Tara Lee
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office
360.902.4136