November 20, 2014

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Northwest District
Northwest Hosts Customer Service Staff

The Northwest District played host to the first of two customer service meetings on Tuesday, Nov. 18. In addition to the Northwest Customer Service Representatives, staff from Kansas City's customer service and traffic management center, Southwest's customer service team and one of the Central District customer service representatives participated in the meeting. The Northwest District's Emergency Operations Phone Team was also invited to participate, and many of them were at the meeting as well. Staff from the remaining districts met in Hannibal on Thursday, Nov. 20.

During the meeting, the team was able to learn about enhancements to the Call Report database, the Contacts Map and the Customer Service Tracker. There was a roundtable discussion on best practices around the state and Dr. Tim Crowley led attendees through stress management discussions and exercises. Each team reported on how they are investing their prize money from last year's Innovation Challenge and then they were given a tour of the district office complex, including the EOC and Customer Service areas. Each participant went home with a gift bag, courtesy of the St. Joseph Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Kudos to Senior Customer Service Representatives Shelly Abersold and Lisa Kellison and to Northeast Customer Relations Manager Marisa Ellison for organizing this very well received event.

Marisa Ellison speaks to the group of attendees
Northeast Customer Relations Manager Marisa Ellison led the meeting and spoke with attendees about some important issues to remember going into winter operations.
Greg Clarkston leads a discussion on some of the updates attendees will be seeing
Senior Organizational Performance Analyst Greg Clarkston went over several changes the group will be seeing soon, including changes to the Customer Service Tracker and Customer Concern Database.
During Dr. Crowley's presentation, the group broke into teams of two for more indepth discussions
Construction Project Office Assistant Phyllis Filley and Senior Customer Service Representative Louise Carroll were teamed up in a portion of Dr. Crowley's program about connecting and listening.
Dr. Tim Crowley spoke on managing stress
Dr. Tim Crowley spoke to the attendees on ways to combat and manage stress in their every day lives, both at work and at home. He led the group through some exercises and gave them tips on practices to put in place each day to help manage their stress levels.
Kim Gordon shared a story of a difficult customer and how she handled it
During a discussion on best practices, Senior Customer Service Representative Kim Gordon talked about a recent phone call she took from a customer and how she handled it.


A catered lunch was enjoyed by all.
All attendees

Front row (l-r): Barb Holland, Lana Allen, Andrea Stoops, Melanie Noel, Tammy Childress, Phyllis Filley, Karen Walk, Jessica Burns.

Middle row (l-r): Lisa Kellison, Shelly Aebersold, Danielle Lankford, Sherita White, Lori Ferguson, Louise Carroll, Tina Grotoff, Michelle Kelley.

Back row (l-r): Tammy Wallace, Kendra Ezzell, Nicole Steele, Greg Clarkston, Jason Sims, Becky Walsh.

Service Awards Luncheon
A luncheon was held at the St. Jo Frontier Casino to honor employees with 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40 years of service to the department. Honorees and their guests were treated to a steak or chicken dinner with a cheesecake dessert. Each guest of the honorees also received flowers to recognize their service and sacrifice to the department. District Engineer Don Wichern greeted each honoree, made a few brief remarks before the meal and then gave each attendee a framed certificate showing their years of service.
Twenty-year honorees

Twenty-year Honorees:

Front Row (from left): Milan Maintenance Supervisor Rodney Welch; Materials Inspector Janique Flora; Senior Construction Inspector Kris Buczek; Senior Materials Inspector Krista Burnett; Mound City Maintenance Supervisor Mike Lewis; District Maintenance and Traffic Engineer Marty Liles.

Back Row (from left): Senior Materials Inspector Michael Powell; Senior Construction Inspector Jason White; Chillicothe Maintenance Crew Leader Bryce Anderson; Savannah Senior Maintenance Worker Kelly Kurtz; Rushville Senior Maintenance Worker Tom Judah; Land Surveyor Stephen Miller.

Not pictured: Trenton Maintenance Crew Leader Trevor Leeper; Executive Assistant Karen Huber; St. Joseph Resident Engineer Greg Stervinou; Transportation Project Manager Wes Moore.

Twenty-Five-Year Honorees

Twenty-five-year Honorees:

Front Row (from left): Regional Bridge Maintenance Supervisor Bill Gimse; Brookfield Maintenance Crew Leader Mark Corbin; Unionville Senior Maintenance Worker Jim Blanchard.

Back Row (from left): District Design Engineer Troy Slagle; Savannah Maintenance Supervisor Jeff Pittman; Cameron Senior Equipment Technician John Blades; Brookfield Senior Maintenance Worker David Lindbloom.

Not pictured: Carrollton Maintenance Supervisor Doug White; Bethany Maintenance Crew Leader (retired) Mark Wiley.

Thirty-year honorees

Thirty-year Honorees:

Front Row (from left): District Engineer Don Wichern; Senior Highway Designer Jack Smith; Assistant District Engineer Tony McGaughy; Maintenance Superintendent Charlie Roach.

Not pictured: King City Senior Maintenance Worker Ron Ettinger; Keytesville Maintenance Crew Leader Jeff Lewis; Keytesville Maintenance Supervisor Jeff Peters; Chillicothe Senior Construction Technician (retired) Danny Gramenz.

Thirty-five-year honorees

Thirty-five-year honorees:

St. Joseph Maintenance Supervisor Robby Blair; Grant City Maintenance Supervisor Dan Roach.

Forty-year honorees

Forty-year honorees:

Brookfield Maintenance Crew Leader John Christy; Grant City Maintenance Crew Leader Gary Owens.


For more info

Marcia Johnson
Customer Relations Specialist
Northwest District

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