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2010 Recognition Champions
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2010 Recognition Champions

Pamela Sabin Recognition Champion Award
Recipients: Janice Archer, Jeff Hughes, and Ginger Wilkinson

Spotlight Award
Recipients: Mark Barbee, Michele Grant, Kathleen Langlois, Daniel Guerard

The Howell Excellence in Education Award
Recipient: Rideau Recognition Solutions

Best Pratice Awards
Recipients: Faxton-St. Luke’s Healthcare, Telus Communications, TD Canada Trust
2010 Best Overall Recognition Program: Scotiabank

Pamela Sabin Recognition Champion Award

Pamela Sabin was a founding member of Recognition Professionals International formerly, NAER, a charter member of the Board of Directors, and a true champion of employee recognition. She was instrumental in the development and initiation of the Recognition Champion Program.  In 2001, Pamela passed away after a hard-fought battle with leukemia. In recognition to Pamela, this award has been named in her honor. All recipients should feel honored and challenged to maintain the high integrity and passion that Pamela demonstrated for employee recognition.

Janice Archer, HR Professional
South Florida Water Management District

Janice has been in human resources for 20 years and she is currently responsible for all employee recognition matters for the South Florida Water Management District.   Janice championed the promotion, fostering and communication of the value that employees bring to the organization. She works through cross-functioning teams and they have developed criteria to support new programs and make sure that their significant achievements align with the District's mission and goals.  Janice meets each month with the new employees to make sure that they understand the importance of recognizing each other.  She also maintains the recognition portal to make sure that achievements are posted in a timely manner.  Janice prepares bi-weekly notices to all managers to provide tips to improve their recognition presentations.  She also has made many presentations to educate and promote employee recognition throughout the District; these sessions have generated a significant increase in the number of awards delivered in the company. Read more of what Janice had to say about her award recognition...

Jeff Hughes, Creative Designer
Enterprise Employee Recognition & Rewards United Airlines

Jeff exemplifies the people-centric gratitude and passion for recognition of all United colleagues.  He has gently pushed the boundaries within United and enabled leaders, both corporate and frontline, to reach out and recognize their employees who make a difference.  Over the last 18 months, Jeff has designed and kicked off numerous recognition programs, initiatives and systems at United.  He has built and strengthened a cross-divisional working team that provides feedback and drives relevant communication through the respective divisions.  This effort has resulted in cost efficiencies by tailoring enterprise recognition programs to meet specific design needs versus having each division with their own recognition efforts.  Jeff models the behavior that United expects from our frontline colleagues by surprising and delighting everyone he touches. United customers and colleagues both highly value and rate the recognition program with a 95% satisfaction rate.  Jeff is continuously striving to make recognition + rewards a part of the United culture and he is considered an unwavering model of excellence at United Airlines.

Ginger Wilkinson, Executive Assistant to the CEO
Trover Solutions

Ginger has designed six different recognition programs for the employees at Trover Solutions that include formal, informal and day-to-day initiatives.   She has also taken on the responsibility of  preparing weekly recognition tips that are shared with all supervisors and managers by e-mail.  When needed, she provides one-on-one assistance to anyone who wants to improve their recognition presentations.    Ginger built and maintains a Recognition Team that work with her to support the company's recognition efforts.  She uses her meetings with them as opportunities for training, sharing what she has learned at conferences and RPI training courses.  She also recognizes team members for their special efforts.  Ginger edits Trover's Raising the Bar monthly publication that shares stories of employees who have "raised the bar," received promotions, and have received external kudos.  It is a great way for employees to be recognized publically and in print for their exceptional efforts.  Communication is a key to her recognition success.

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Spotlight Award

The Spotlight Award is presented annually to those RPI members who have gone above and beyond in supporting the organization throughout the year.


Mark Barbee, Maritz
Michele Grant, CRP, Hallmark Insights
Kathleen Langlois, CRP, O.C. Tanner

Daniel Guerard
Daniel has served on the Marketing and Communications committee for the past year and goes way above and beyond in his contribution to this committee.  He was recruited to come and help with some of RPI's analytics/reporting from a search engine optimization perspective.  One the key elements that he helped deliver is report on understanding our website traffic patterns. His contribution went beyond his technical expertise into many value add ideas that helped us become better marketers of RPI.

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The Howell Excellence in Education Award

In 2009, RPI developed a new recognition program to honor achievements and excellence in education. At each annual conference, one individual or corporation will be recognized for their outstanding achievement in education.

The Howell Excellence in Education Award is named to honor and acknowledge Theresa Howell's extraordinary accomplishments in the development of the RPI Certified Recognition Professional education program, as well as her leadership within the RPI organization.Theresa has proven that exceptional achievements are within our reach when we stand tall on a foundation of personal integrity, hard work and unwavering determination.

Recipient: Rideau Recognition Solutions

In recognition of the overwhelming ongoing commitment to education in the field of recognition and for their outstanding support of RPI, the 2010 Howell Excellence in Education Award recipient is Rideau Recognition Solutions.

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Best Practice Awards

The RPI Best Practice Standards Awards are presented annually and represent the pinnacle of recognition program excellence. In order to win an award an organization must submit an application and be judged superior in one or more of the seven categories, which include:

  1. Recognition Strategy
  2. Management Responsibility
  3. Recognition Program Measurement
  4. Communication Plan
  5. Recognition Training
  6. Recognition Events and Celebrations
  7. Program Change and Flexibility

Best in Class Award for Standard 1, Recognition Strategy, and Standard 5, Recognition Training:
Faxton-St. Luke’s Healthcare

As the winner for recognition strategy, Faxton-St. Luke’s Healthcare (FSLH) is driving toward its 2015 “Getting to Great” vision: To be the premier healthcare system in Upstate New York known for clinical excellence through exceptional employees, medical staff, volunteers, Relationship-Based Care, and financial strength.

Prior to 2006, the organization had a number of recognition initiatives that relied solely on cash-based rewards. The effort was inconsistently managed and was not tied to any of FSLH’s strategies. In 2006, the organization introduced “Applause” which is now the umbrella program for all employee recognition and reward initiatives.

Applause is one of the key tools used to drive employee and medical staff satisfaction. Applause provides many employee recognition communication and education touch points, ongoing performance and activity tracking and reporting, and effective recognition and reward offers; such as positive manager and staff interactions, a points-based reward system redeemable for the achiever’s choice of awards, frequent group celebrations, and cash-based awards.

Employees and medical staff are encouraged to uphold the organization’s mission “to provide the highest quality health care in our region,” and are recognized for supporting the organization’s Five Pillars of Excellence (Growth, People, Quality, Service, and Finance) and exemplifying the core values of:

  • Quality service
  • Honesty
  • Respect and Dignity
  • Teamwork and Pride
  • Communication

These values and daily behaviors are reinforced through Applause.

As the winner for Recognition Training, Faxton-St. Luke’s Healthcare (FSLH) is recognized for acknowledging that training is an important aspect of ensuring that the Applause program goals are achieved. The recognition training strategy at FSLH encompasses both formal and informal components. The formal training strategy includes training Directors/ Managers/ Champions, Employees, and Client Administrators training. The training strategy also includes focusing on new hire orientations, Information Technology Classes and a Manager Educational Campaign in 2008/2009 – which focused on the Importance of Recognition.

The Applause program also addresses using recognition effectively, taking time to recognize and making recognition simple.

The informal training components include Annual Applause Birthday Celebration, a contact us, frequently asked questions and on-demand training pages on the program website, Web Site Communications and participation in the RPI and ASHHRA Conference.

Best in Class Award for Standard 2, Management Responsibility:
Telus Communications

As the recipient of this award, Telus Communications is recognized for their Senior leadership acknowledging employee recognition is critical to the company’s overall success. TELUS is very fortunate to have visible and consistent support at the most senior level. The senior leaders have ensured that their role in defining the recognition strategy extends beyond their philosophical guidance to ensuring metrics are established to encourage leaders at all levels to take the personal initiative to apply the recognition principles and to empower their teams embrace peer recognition.

Senior leadership has allocated resources in the following areas:

  • The development of an Engagement Forum (TEF) in 2009,
  • The development of a Recognition Team (Core)
  • Specific Leadership Development
  • Funding for Recognition Awards
  • Development of a Recognition Prime Network

The senior leadership at TELUS continues to support the evolution of recognition initiatives and programs and continues to find innovative ways to improve the impact and strategic value of the investment and focus on recognition.

Best in Class Award for Standard 3, Recognition Program Measurement, and Standard 4, Communication Plan:
TD Canada Trust

As the winner for Recognition Program Measurement, TD Canada Trust is recognized for their efforts to elevate employee satisfaction and drive sales and service results. TD Canada Trust measures their recognition programs by using a variety of methodologies, including

  • To measure program success in terms of financial and customer objectives
  • To evaluate program effectiveness in raising overall employee satisfaction,
  • And finally, to gauge the specific program’s success in achieving the recognition strategy

In the spring of 2007, TD Canada Trust launched a Champions program-specific survey to evaluate employee satisfaction with all of the company’s recognition programs, and to gauge employees’ overall perspective on our corporate goal of “Making TD a great place to work.”

In the spring of 2007, TD Canada Trust also developed a base formula for measuring Reward and Recognition ROI, using employee and customer key metrics. These metrics are reviewed and completed on an annual basis and provides information on the trending of key results and the correlation to the corporate reward and recognition investment.

TD Canada Trust also has developed a Champions Club Participant Survey, Third Party Recognition, and Local branch tracking to evaluate the success of the program.

As the winner for the Communication Plan Standard, TD Canada Trust is for the foundation of their Champions reward and recognition program as a strong, recognizable and compelling brand and a comprehensive and highly effective annual communication strategy.

Each year the national recognition team develops a communication plan designed to drive interest and enthusiasm for the various program elements amongst employees. The energy and momentum created by ongoing and consistent communication has been a key factor in the success of TDCT’s recognition program since its inception.
The communication plan focuses on two primary objectives:

  1. To communicate program details to employees so they understand how to participate and make them aware of the rewards available.
  2. To publicize employee award recipients and showcase the behaviours and achievements that helped them achieve their recognition.

These objectives outline the ‘content’ of TD Canada Trust’s communication. However, their communication plan is about much more than just delivering the ‘need to know’ information. It drives a culture of recognition within the company. It generates a sense of enthusiasm with all employees and motivate them to want to participate in the Champions program because they believe it is improving their experience as an employee.

2010 RPI Best Practice Standards Award for Best Overall Recognition Program:

Recognition Professionals International is pleased to announce that Scotiabank has just received the prestigious 2010 RPI Best Practice Standards® Award for Best Overall Recognition Program. In order to win RPI’s Best Overall honor, the Scotiabank recognition program had to excel in all seven RPI Best Practice Standards categories.

Scotia Applause, the bank’s 9-year-old multiple award-winning recognition program, is the prime driver of employee engagement. Four reasons the program has been so successful are:

  • The program’s alignment to the organization’s global vision
  • A high level of senior management engagement
  • Effective implementation of recognition practices throughout the organization
  • The high degree of relevance for all program stakeholders

Scotiabank’s “One Team, One Goal” philosophy rallies employees around the objective of being the best international financial services company based in Canada.

The bank was named among the 50 Best Employers in Canada for the 5th straight year by Report on Business magazine; and a top employer in Mexico for the 5th consecutive year by the Great Place to Work Institute. The Institute also recognized Scotiabank as one of the best places to work in Central America and the Caribbean.

“The Scotia Applause program is a consistent RPI award winner because it sets the long-term standard for all other employee recognition programs,” said RPI President Lisa Massiello. “Although this was a pioneering program, the Applause team members haven’t rested on their laurels. Every year they continue to make improvements that set the bar a little higher. This is an award they’ve worked hard to earn.”

Scotiabank is one of North America’s premier financial institutions and Canada’s most international bank. With 69,000 employees, Scotiabank and its affiliates serve approximately 12.5 million customers in about 50 countries around the world.

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2010 Annual Conference