The Department of State is pleased to announce the selection of Ms. Dominique Gerdes, Visa Specialist from Embassy Port-au-Prince, Haiti for the 2010 Department of State Foreign Service National of the Year (FSN of the Year) award.
The 2010 Department FSN of the Year winner is a dedicated and long-serving Embassy employee recognized for her leadership and vast institutional knowledge. This was keenly demonstrated in the aftermath of the highly destructive earthquake of 12 January, 2010. Dominique actively encouraged and motivated her staff to return to work immediately after the quake to provide the tremendous logistical support needed to conduct the largest American citizen evacuation under the most extreme circumstances since WW2. Under her hands-on supervision, and with few readily-available resources, her team simultaneously oriented 75 TDYers, managed translator teams for humanitarian parole processing, prepared hundreds of emergency immigrant visas for orphans, and arranged for feeding babies in the overcrowded consular waiting areas as well as stocking food and water for 16,000 evacuees waiting at the airport. As a result of her leadership, immigrant visa processing resumed less than six weeks after the earthquake. In 2009, her superb visa management reduced the embassy immigrant visa backlog by nearly 20,000 cases, achieving the shortest visa processing time possible in the past 20 years.
Friday, October 29, 2010
FSN of the Year Award
It's award season at the Department, and I think this one is particularly well-deserved.