Public Employee Salute Winners


UPEA is Looking for 5-Star Public Employees

Please consider nominating a co-worker for the Public Employee Salute.  Utah taxpayers need to know about the people who do great things behind the scenes.  You can let them know by nominating an outstanding public employee.  Along with public recognition, winners are honored at a quarterly Salute Recognition Luncheon.


Click here to nominate someone.

You may know someone who meets the following criteria,

Extraordinary competence in performing functions
Creativity in identifying problems and devising workable, cost-effective solutions
Excellent relationships with the public and other employees
Commitment to serving the public as the client
A commitment to economy and efficiency in government
Volunteers his or her time in an effort to give back to the community



Lindy Varney, DWR

Lindy Varney is a licensing specialist for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.  In her position, Lindy is asked to handle some very difficult situations including complaints from hunters and anglers regarding their permits.  She assists in allocating special permits and addresses public safety and agriculture conflicts caused by wildlife.  Lindy always handles these calls in an appropriate and professional manner, even when the caller is upset or angry.  As an avid hunter, Lindy puts herself in the clients’ position and uses her personal experience to resolve difficult situations.  She always does her best to represent the interests of DWS and the public.  Lindy is a tireless worker and is very deserving of the Public Employee Salute.

Dan Trujillo, SLCC

Dan Trujillo is a Program Development Director with Salt Lake Community College.  Part of his job is providing training for students, staff, and corporations.  Whenever Dan makes a presentation or conducts a training session, everyone in attendance agrees that he makes it fun, educational, and well worth their time.  He recently conducted a workshop for SLCC employees and would not accept payment for his services, even though it was considered one of the best training sessions of the year.  Dan is a fun, personable trainer, and has a wealth of knowledge regarding computers and software.  He shines in his job and is appreciated by his coworkers, students, and staff at Salt Lake Community College.

LeeAnn Herndon, DWS

LeeAnn Herndon is a Disability Specialist with the Department of Workforce Services.  LeeAnn is a physically active person who wants to share her desire for a longer healthier life with everyone around her.  She serves on numerous committees within DWS including the Wellness Committee.  LeAnn uses her positive attitude and encouragement to spear-head healthy activities such as lunchtime workout sessions, a snack shack of healthy snacks, and an hourly plank session throughout the day.  LeeAnn has encountered obstacles in the process of creating these activities, but she uses her engaging personality and optimistic view to gently encourage those she works with.  She is an example of how little changes can make a big impact.



Wendy Rallison and Julie Steed, DOC

Wendy Rallison and Julie Steed are Volunteer Specialists with the Utah Department of Corrections.  Julie has been with the department for 24 years and Wendy has been with the department for 3 years.  They are part of a three member team that manages over 1,500 volunteers.  In order to successfully work with volunteers Wendy and Julie are involved in extensive training in order to document staff files and process daily clearances for group who provide activities to the offender population.  They interact with guests including LDS General Authorities, U.S. Senators and Representatives, and Native American representatives.

Wendy and Julie also generate safety and security clearances for performance groups.  These clearances require extensive work on a daily basis to provide background checks, staffing allocations, policy review, and communication within the department.

These two amazing individuals support the department’s vision and mission in promoting a culture of accountability and integrity.  In addition, they provide the opportunity for life changing experiences for both volunteers and offenders.

Nancy Lucero, SLCo: Food Protection

Nancy Lucero is the Office Support for the Food Protection Division of Salt Lake County’s Health Department.  For the past 14 years, Nancy Lucero has been the smiling face that greets customers when they enter the Food Protection’s office, and more often than not they leave the office with a smile on their face.  Not only can Nancy solve customers’ problems, but she can do this all the while answering telephone calls and emails.  Along with being a multi-tasker, Nancy’s high degree of integrity and responsibility keeps the Food Protection’s office running so smoothly.  Her hard work and dedication to the Salt Lake County Health Department allows the food inspectors to be successful and do their job to protect public health.

Courtney Dickinson, DOC

Courtney Dickinson is an officer for the Department of Corrections and has worked for the state of Utah for 3 years.  In this short amount of time, Officer Dickinson has continually shown her fellow coworkers that she will give 100%, no matter what the task is.  She is a team player and a great example for any officer.  She is able to look at a situation and come up with several alternative solutions to the problem.  Not only does Officer Dickinson help train staff at the in-service and pre-service academies, she has rewritten the trainings for the Hostage Taking & Negotiation, Property Processing & Institutional Security classes, and helped rewriting the “On the Job” training manual for new officers starting at the prison.  Along with performing regularly required duties, Officer Dickinson actively recruits potential officers, and volunteers at the Draper Days parade and Autism Speaks events.

Jennifer Storie, Office of Lt. Governor

Jennifer Storie is the Special Assistant to Lieutenant Governor Spencer Cox.  Jennifer has worked in the public sector for many years and began her career in public service as a United States Postal carrier.  She then worked with the Utah Courts system, which led her to her current position as Special Assistant to the Lieutenant Governor.  Jennifer has assisted in creating bills that have been presented before the Utah House and Senate and has also served as the “keeper of the Great Seal of the state of Utah” for all legal documents that bare Utah’s seal.  Jennifer’s tireless work ethic and professional demeanor has gained the respect of her coworkers, including the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and countless Utah State officials.  Jennifer’s commitment to public service does not stop at the end of her work day.  In her free time, she volunteers with the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, the local LGBTQ community, and local Human Rights Campaign events.

Jake Brown, UDOT: Cottonwood shed

Jake Brown is a Highway Operations Manager for the Utah Department of Transportation, and manages the Cottonwood shed, which services both Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons.  Jake, and his crew at the Cottonwood shed, ensure the community and the traveling public who use the two canyons are safe.  Under his leadership, the crew has installed flexible delineation and hazard panels to improve visibility and problems on the side of the road.  Not only does Jake make sure the roads are clear of snow for the local (and out of town) skiers, but he also makes sure that homeowners are safe from natural disasters such as mudslides that occur after large amounts of snow fall.  Jake and his crew have helped numerous homeowners dig out of the mud and have installed barriers to prevent future mudslides.  Jake is the true definition of leadership.  He always puts his family, his crew, and the public ahead of himself.



Amanda Brown, USOR

Amanda Brown is a Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Counselor for the Utah State Office of Rehabilitation.  Amanda has worked for the State of Utah for the past 9 years.  As a Transition Counselor, Amanda works with clients from the ages of 14-22 by helping them learn job skills.  She regularly meets with her clients at her office, as well as makes the extra effort to meet with them at their schools.  Amanda celebrates each of her client’s successes and works at helping them gain self-confidence and self-reliance.  Along with being a great counselor for each of her clients, Amanda is an exemplary coworker.  She will always assist and help out, no task is too small.

Daryl Christensen, UDOT

Daryl Christensen is the Materials Lab Manager for the Department of Transportation Region 4.  When a Region 4 UDOT employee is having issues with equipment or material quality Daryl is the person they go to.  He has also changed the way the state chooses a construction contractor.  Normally, the state uses a “cost plus time” method when selecting a contractor.  That all changed a year ago when Daryl introduced a “quality factor” into the selection method.  Now, when the state selects a contractor, their quality of work is also taken into consideration.  This is the first time, on a national basis, that the quality of a contractor’s previous work is considered during the selection process.



2 thoughts on “Public Employee Salute Winners

  1. Could you tell me what happened to the Public Employee Salute for John Service that I submitted back in May???

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