By Dalton Walker
O’odham Action News
More than 200 Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community tribal government employees were recognized for their dedication to the Community at the annual Service Awards luncheon on January 10.
Every year, SRPMIC acknowledges employees who have reached an anniversary milestone of five years or longer, with five-year increments. The January event celebrated service achieved in 2019.
Employees with 20 or more years of service received a special gift and were called to the front to shake hands with SRPMIC Council members. Salt River Fire Department Deputy Fire Chief Kevin Makil celebrated his 35th year, and fire captains Johnny Acosta and Steve Wood celebrated 30 years. Museum specialist Debra James and court administration bailiff and process server Dinah Miguel also celebrated 30 years. In all, 264 employees were invited to take part in the special luncheon.
Community Manager Bryan Meyers was the event’s emcee. He read the Council’s vision statement before reading off the employee names. He explained the Community’s economic growth and success and that the long-term employees’ commitment was part of that growth.
“We count on our employees to serve this Community in a way that embraces, promotes and supports the vision, mission and values of the Community with the highest degree of professionalism and customer service possible,” Meyers said. “It takes a very special person to provide a high level of community service year over year. Today is an opportunity for us to recognize you, our employees; to give thanks to you, acknowledge your dedication, and encourage you to continue serving this great Community to the best of your abilities.”
SRPMIC President Martin Harvier was a guest speaker and Council member Wi-Bwa Grey gave a blessing. The event was organized by Human Resources.
Harvier talked about how the Community is often viewed as an economic leader in Indian Country and how even nearby municipalities are looking at Salt River’s economic development as a potential model. He said part of the reason for that is the tribal government employees and their commitment to bettering the Community.
“I want to say thank you for your contributions to the Community. We wouldn’t be where we are [today] without all of you,” Harvier said.