Louisville District Commander Col. Antoinette Gant toured projects in the Green River Area in Kentucky Oct. 23, including Nolin and Barren River lakes and the site of the former Green River Dam No. 6. Gant visited with Corps lake staff, where she promoted workforce readiness and recognized team members for their superior service.
“You do have a commander that cares,” Gant said during her first stop at Barren River Lake in Glasgow, Kentucky. “Even though I’m not out here all the time. This is an opportunity for me to talk to you all, hear your concerns and address any issues.
“I see so much good work coming from the field, but so little recognition for the work you are doing so I wanted to come out here and recognize you all for the great things you are doing,” Gant said.
Gant presented Maintenance Mechanic Leader Timmy Jackson with a Louisville Proud award for exemplary safety efforts while overseeing the painting contract for the control tower.
Later in the day at Nolin River Lake in Bee Spring, Kentucky, Gant presented Park Ranger Curtis Martin with a 30- year service award and recognized Ruth Ann Wilson, office administrator, with a Louisville Proud award for her support with the new reservation system transition. Gant also handed out commander’s coins to the maintenance crew comprised of Kerry Sanders, Mark West, Richard Hatcher, David Anderson, Theodore Repper and Blake Sullivan for their work to remove hundreds of trees from Nolin River to provide safe conditions for recreational boaters and canoers.
“From the maintenance crew, office staff, seasonal workers to the full time rangers thank you for all that you do to keep us going,” Gant said.
At both project sites Gant took the opportunity to introduce the staff to the Great Lakes and Ohio River Division’s newest initiative – WkRP – the Workforce Readiness Program. WkRP focuses on four key areas which include Deployments and Family Readiness; In/Out Processing and Sponsorship; Training, Awards, and Mentorship; and the Ready and Resilient Campaign.
“We want to make sure everyone stays ready to do your job,” said Gant, explaining how WkRP should be the focus for how we treat employees. “It’s about progressing as people and an organization to be better.”
When employees deploy to support disaster response and overseas contingencies, the district is committed to supporting deployed team members and their families.
“Taking Care of People means preparing our employees and their families for the challenges that deployments offer,” Gant said.
She went on to explain why such a focus has been put on In/Out Processing and Sponsorship. “We’ve worked to try to streamline the processes for bringing new employees into our organization and supporting them as they grow with the workforce,” Gant said.
“The next part of that is to ensure while they are here they are getting the necessary training and recognition. We’ve started giving away our new Louisville Proud awards as an encouragement,” she said. Gant also discussed the importance of having a mentor no matter how junior or senior you might be in your career.
Lastly, explaining the Ready and Resilient Campaign Gant discussed examples of what the Louisville District is doing to emphasize the importance of having a holistic, collaborative and coherent enterprise to increase individual and unit readiness and resilience including health and wellness programs, employee feedback, and family and spouse events such as the new 90-day fitness challenge.