The Houston Permitting Center’s Outstanding Service Award recognizes employees who excel at customer service, who develop and recognize others, and who improve the operating efficiency of their section or division. Employees submit nominations for other employees regardless of their department or rank. At the end of each quarter, nominations are reviewed and scored by a Selection Committee of peers.
This quarter’s winners are:
• Brenda Lewis, administrative specialist, Public Works and Engineering Department, HPC Logistics Section
• Irene Aguilar, regulatory investigator, Administration and Regulatory Affairs Department, Transportation Section
• Lisa Brown, division manager, Public Works and Engineering Department, Customer Assistance and Code Development Section
• Nina Benn, accountant associate, Public Works and Engineering Department, HPC Shared Services Section
Brenda Lewis has worked for the city nearly 25 years. She uses her vast wealth of experience and knowledge to troubleshoot and solve problems quickly.
She constantly reorganizes her work to increase effectiveness and save money for the division. Furthermore, she promotes positive morale and is known by all levels of staff to be a positive, enthusiastic and cheerful person. She takes it upon herself to mentor new supervisors and help them become more familiar with Logistics’ processes and procedures.
Since day one, Irene Aguilar has shown a willingness to work with her entire team. That was most evident in December, the section’s busiest time of the year. The process to permit and inspect vehicles for hire usually takes a lot of running back and forth between the CSRs working inside the building and the investigators working outside. Aguilar suggested ways to make the process faster, smoother and more efficient, including her being responsible for the box of permits and taking them "out to the field." The time saved allowed her team to serve more customers. The section received several emails complimenting the new process and thanking their staff, especially Aguilar.
Lisa Brown oversees three satellite offices in addition to the main CACD group at the HCP. She assists with technical code analysis and handles numerous special projects for Building Code Enforcement. Despite her busy schedule, Brown also began coordinating the group's software and programming upgrades. She handles any challenge presented, all while maintaining a friendly disposition. As a manager, Brown looks out for her team and takes a personal interest in their well-being. She keeps up with their family situations, provides work-related assistance and code training outside the group.
When a colleague suddenly fell ill, Nina Benn stepped in to make sure the job was done in addition to her normal duties. The extra duties consisted of reconciling and depositing the cash collected in a timely manner. At the same time, Benn also filled in for the senior office assistant, who was out for the holidays. That job consisted of
scanning all incoming checks that arrived in the mail. Benn went above and beyond the call of duty to be a team player and help her section.