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NEWS | July 20, 2011

Ms. Joyce Ferrell Receives Commanding Officer's Annual Secretarial Award

By Dom Panciarelli

Ms. Joyce Ferrell, of the Optical Sciences Division at the Naval Research Laboratory, has been selected to receive the 2010 Commanding Officer's Award for Excellence in Secretarial Support. Ms. Ferrell was recognized for her outstanding work in support of the Applied Optics Branch. CAPT Paul Stewart, NRL's commanding officer, presented the award at a ceremony held on July 21. The award was established in 1994 to recognize significant contributions made by NRL civilian employees working in secretarial positions.

The nomination prepared by Mr. Dale Linne von Berg, head of the Applied Optics Branch, notes Ms. Ferrell's continued excellence of work on assigned duties, sense of responsibility and initiative, and dedication to duty she brings to her position. Since joining the branch in 2008, her performance rating has been at the highest level of any secretary employed at the branch. Ms. Ferrell's productivity far surpasses her years of service at NRL and based on her self-initiating efforts, she was awarded a Special Act of Award in 2010.

Ms. Ferrell is well-recognized by her branch colleagues for her pro-active development and initiation of new methods for tracking, recording, and processing branch records/documentation, significantly reducing the time and work required by staff members. Even with her significant contributions to branch efficiency, Ms. Ferrell continues to propose and investigate new methods to improve branch operations and work flow of all support operations.

Managing the branch's budget of over approximately $120M per year demands a very high level of efficiency. Ms. Ferrell has met this challenge head-on by exercising her experience and initiative to streamline all levels of branch operations. She interacts daily with representatives of government, on-site contractor personnel, multiple sponsors, industrial representatives, and civilian and military personnel on a multitude of actions. These include funding and document transfers, security documentation, procurement actions, budget monitoring, technical meetings and equipment transfers, to name a few.

According to Ms. Ferrell, I am honored to win this award. I have always had a passion for administrative work and work best when there are lots of tasks to juggle. That is why I continue to investigate new ways to accomplish tasks more efficiently and focus on the small details so they don't become large problems down the line. It also helps to work with a pleasant and dedicated group of people as we have in this branch. It's an honor to be able to support them in the very important work they do for our country, concluded Ms. Ferrell.

The entire branch depends on Ms. Ferrell to manage the administrative work of our multiple programs. In an extremely short period of time, she has revolutionized, digitized, and networked the previous paper-based branch method of doing business. These innovations have increased the overall productivity of the branch to enable us to manage these important defense related programs. The direct result of Ms. Ferrell's efforts have contributed immeasurably to the success of the branch. Not one to rest on these accomplishments, she continues to investigate and propose additional methods to improve branch operations that positively impact the work of the entire branch. Ms. Ferrell is definitely worthy of this award, concluded Mr. Linne von Berg.

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