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Yosemite National Park Superintendent Don Neubacher announced today that Cindy Whitten is the recipient of the 2009 Barry Hance Memorial Award. Whitten, the Acting Human Resources Officer and Workers Compensation Program Manager, received the award at an all employee meeting today in Yosemite Valley. The ceremony was attended by approximately 400 people, including several past Barry Hance Award recipients.
“I am tremendously honored to present Cindy with the Barry Hance Memorial Award. This award illustrates someone who is exceptional in all that they do, someone who is always working with a smile on their face, and someone who really makes a difference in other people’s lives,” said Neubacher.
Whitten, originally from San Pedro, CA, has worked for the National Park Service in Yosemite since 1987. Throughout her career, she has worked in several positions in the human resources field. She is currently the Workers Compensation Program Manager and has been the Acting Human Resources Officer for several months. For many employees, she is the first point of contact for those who have been injured on the job. Throughout her career, she has helped hundreds of employees obtain medical care, manage life changing events due to injury, and maintain relationships between injured employees and supervisors.
“This award means a lot to me, since I worked with Barry and got to know him. Barry could change your whole day with a simple smile. I am truly humbled,” said Whitten.
The award is named in honor of Barry Hance, a long-term Facilities Management employee who died in an avalanche while plowing the Tioga Road in 1995. This award is given annually to employees who exemplify the qualities and attributes of Barry Hance. These include a positive attitude, a concern for fellow employees, getting the job done, and a love for Yosemite National Park.