2019 Employees of the Month

October 2019


Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for outstanding work ethic and helpfulness.

Fire Driver/Engineer Kenny Blakey is an exceptional employee who begins every shift looking for projects and maintenance as he arrives to work. He consistently works to improve the performance and quality of the station and apparatus and volunteers to work on special projects while still performing his regular duties and always maintaining a positive attitude.

Kenny has overtaken pump maintenance on all fire apparatus. He has been reliable to identify pump issues, order and replace valves for the fire pumps, and coordinate with the City Garage along with other mechanic shops to ensure appropriate performance of all apparatus.

Kenny has been transferred to every shift due to complex staffing over recent years. He has made a point to contribute and be as positive as he can be. His work ethic is unmatched and he is a positive influence to his peers and the new firefighters.

Blakey, Kenny

August 2019


Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for outstanding customer service and excellent performance.

Ronnie Lovato is an exceptional employee who is always willing to do any job assignment and works hard to make sure the job is done well.

Recently, a newcomer to the City of Gainesville wrote to the City Manager to commend Ronnie Lovato on his work, commenting that Ronnie was extremely polite and took great pride in his work.

Ronnie Lovato is an excellent example for all employees and his work product and attitude are appreciated by his coworkers, the City and its residents.

Lovato, Ronnie

July 2019


Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for outstanding performance to the City of Gainesville Finance and Customer Service Departments.

Since being promoted two years ago to the position of Account Technician 2, Cathy’s willingness to jump in wherever needed with a “can-do” attitude has helped bridge this time of vacant positions within the Customer Service Department and strengthen the Finance Department team. Cathy is capable of keeping up her routine duties while assisting the Accounting Technician 1, Controller, Finance Director and City Manager with multiple projects.

With two open positions in Customer Service, Cathy stepped up to supervise the Customer Service Representatives, Meter Readers, and trained the Accounting Technician 1 to be able to perform as the Customer Service Billing Supervisor’s backup. Cathy has also assisted the Finance Director in the workings of STW and Utility Billing programs.

Cathy continues to provide outstanding service to cashiers, citizens, and employees. She presents an impeccable image for the City and the Finance Department. She is a tremendous help and resource to both Finance and Customer Service by consistently helping out above and beyond her normal duties.

Huddleston, Cathy 7-2019

JUNE 2019

Bobby Claytor, Heavy Equipment Operator - General Services/Solid Waste

Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for hard work and dedication to the Solid Waste operations of the City of Gainesville.

The time, effort and care he has put into his job as a Heavy Equipment Operator for the General Services Department over the past year has not gone unnoticed. Bobby continues to meet performance goals daily, has displayed enthusiasm in his work and has also made strides to continue to learn and grow professionally.

Bobby's flexibility as a driver and ability to operate all kinds of solid waste equipment has been an asset to the department and the City.

Bobby's hard work and dedication to the department, the City and its citizens is much appreciated.

Claytor, Bobby 6-2019

May 2019


Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for excellent job performance and dedicated service.

Over the last year, Division Chief Jeffrey Stevens has done an exceptional job on and off duty. On duty, he has taken a lead role on the Department Directive Committee writing new directives and updating ones that already existed. He continues to monitor, update, conduct and assign all mandated training throughout the department for all personnel in fire, Emergency Management, and medical certifications through the state. He has an active role with the Medal of Honor Emergency Action Plan and continues to be involved in all aspects of Emergency Management for the City through exercise, planning, continuing education, and response. He continues to coordinate all Public Education Programs provided by Gainesville Fire-Rescue to the local schools and businesses. He is a COGU Alumni and is currently serving on several employee project teams in the City. He has spent the last few months developing the first Gainesville Fire-Rescue Citizens Fire Academy. This project alone required an extensive amount of research and work.

Off duty, Jeffrey is actively enrolled in the Chamber of Commerce Leadership Gainesville program. He recently obtained certifications from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection in Fire Officer IV and Fire Instructor III which are the highest levels of education in these categories. He completed a Personal Protective Equipment Inspector course for gloves, hoods and helmets. This certification will reduce fire department cost eliminating the need to use an outside agency for these inspection services.

Overall, Jeffrey continues to produce at the highest level and he is a true asset to the City of Gainesville and Gainesville Fire-Rescue.

Jeffrey Stevens promo Div Chief  040318

March 2019

Shawn LaSalle, Police Officer I - Police Department

Awarded Employee of the Month in recognition and appreciation for excellent job performance and dedicated service.

Recently, Gainesville Police Department responded to a call for service for a weapons offense. At the scene, a suspect barricaded himself in a vehicle and was displaying suicidal intentions. Officer LaSalle was able to de-escalate the situation by engaging the suspect in conversation for several hours. Officer LaSalle was able to take and handle the role of negotiator, despite not having formal training in negotiations, and remained calm, helping to dissipate the suspect’s anxiety levels during the highly volatile situation. Officer LaSalle played a crucial part in bringing the standoff to a peaceful resolution and his outstanding performance in this highly stressful situation is noteworthy and appreciated by the department and the community.

LaSalle S-7875

January 2019


Awarded employee of the month in recognition and appreciation for outstanding achievement and performance.

Sergeant Chris Garner has been instrumental in the implementation and success of the department's physical readiness program. He attended a six-week training from the Texas Department of Public Safety Fitness Institute in Austin, Texas. During that time he was physically and mentally tested in many aspects and he was tested and passed the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) exam earning a certification. He graduated from the institute on November 2, 2018, receiving a Diploma from the Advanced Physical Fitness and Readiness Assessment Instructor Program. These are amazing accomplishments and Sergeant Garner continues to be dedicated in helping with the department's goals in educating its staff in physical fitness and nutrition.

Garner C-7801