Magazine article Public Management

National Public Service Awards Honor Excellence

Magazine article Public Management

National Public Service Awards Honor Excellence

Article excerpt

Five public servants were honored this year for their exceptional achievements in improving the communities and governments they serve. Representing a broad cross-section of government, these officials exemplify the public administration community's pride in the public service.

The American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) and the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) established the National Public Service Awards 14 years ago. Academy President R. Scott Fosler observed, "The awards take on a special significance this year, providing a counterpoint to the growing public distrust in government institutions."

Past recipients include such luminaries as Alice Rivlin (1983), then director of the Congressional Budget Office; Paul Volcker (1988), then chairman of the National Commission on the Public Service; and Donna Shalala (1992), then chancellor of the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

"For the past 14 years, the award has reflected our pride in the public service by communicating professionalism, encouraging excellence, and promoting awareness of public administration," according to ASPA President Edward T. Jennings, Jr.

This year's award winners were chosen from a pool of 65 nominees. Recipients were chosen by a distinguished panel chaired by Elmer B. Staats. The awards were presented on July 1 at the ASPA conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

Three of the 1996 National Public Service Awards recipients are members of ICMA and are featured here.

Ruth R. Crone Executive Director Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments Washington, D.C.

Ruth Crone has been involved with the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) for more than 25 years and currently serves as its executive director.

Under her tenure as executive director, she developed creative solutions to a wide range of challenges facing her community, from developing a water supply emergency plan to a model drug treatment program, to a regional agreement boosting the use of alternative fuel vehicles, to negotiating an agreement between local and federal officials to restore the Anacostia River.

Crone improved regional cooperation among the governments in metropolitan Washington. She obtained funding from the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation and the support of the National Broadcasting Company to improve the regional foster care system and increase recruitment of foster parents in the area. She helped establish the Washington Area Housing Partnership, a public-private collaboration that links specific housing developments and neighborhoods with the resources necessary to increase the supply of affordable housing in the area.

Crone also has served the profession by lecturing to graduate and undergraduate students on public administration at several universities in the Washington area. …

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