The Harford County Commission on Disabilities will host its annual Employment Recognition Luncheon at noon on Oct. 24 at Maryland Golf and Country Clubs in Bel Air.
The keynote speaker will be Mr. Jesse H. Bane, owner of Quality One Landscaping and a former Employer of the Year.
The luncheon’s main purpose is to “celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of people with disabilities who overcome obstacles in their pursuit of excellence,” according to Committee Co-Chair Niki Biggs. “Their accomplishments are especially significant in this difficult job market."
The theme for this year’s luncheon is “Because We Are EQUAL to the Task.“ The luncheon will kick off a six-month local marketing campaign that will aim to educate the public and local employers on the value of employing citizens with disabilities. The campaign will include posters around Harford County, as well as informational resources regarding such topics as youth, accommodations, mental health, veterans and aging in the workplace.
Here's a rundown of award winners:
- Employee of the Year honors will go to Katie Nicolucci, who is employed by JoAnn Fabrics in Bel Air. I
- An award of merit will be presented to Michael Thomas, employed by Arby’s in Bel Air.
- The 2013 Student Worker of the Year Award will be presented to Tyrel Branch, who works at the Rockspring McDonald’s.
- Philip Mitchell, who works at Union Hospital, will receive the Student Worker Merit Award.
- Susie Mahone of the Bel Air Branch of Harford County Public Library will be recognized as an Employer of the Year, as will Bel Air Health and Rehabilitation.
- Coffee News of Harford County will receive an Employer Award of Merit.
“The Commission also uses the event to recognize contributions made by employers, families, friends and organizations to change attitudes about employees with disabilities in the workforce,” Biggs said.
The Accessibility/Inclusion Award will be presented to Sergeant Paul Wilkinson of the Harford County Sheriff’s Office for his annual efforts in the Disability Awareness Parking Campaign.
The Media Award will be presented to Harford Cable Network for its commitment to covering resources and activities related to disabilities in Harford County.
The Ruth Helen Thompson Community Service Award will be presented to P&J’s Life Skills, a respite and social activity group for youth, teens and adults with disabilities in Harford County.
The Employment Committee is excited to announce a new award this year. The “Open Doors Award” recognizes an individual or organization, chosen by the Employment Committee, which goes above and beyond in their unique contribution to bettering the lives of youth or adults with disabilities, thereby improving their employment outcomes.
This year the ”Open Doors Award” will go to Terri Cooney for her extraordinary efforts in providing programming and activities to citizens with disabilities, and Harford Bike Camp, an annual week-long event that helps people of all ages and disabilities learn to ride a bike.