Employee of the Month Gold Medallion


September 13, 2017

Through our Employee Recognition Program, we seek to inspire employees to do bigger and better things by recognizing their successes. Each month, calls for nominations are solicited, urging employees to submit nominations, recognizing their colleagues for their hard work and commitment to Melwood. The testimonies are inspiring.

Take a look at this summer’s employees of the month submissions for June, July, and August.

Direct Support Professional

Darlene Toy- Minor (PEP Program Coordinator, NIKE): Darlene is on campus before employees arrive, and oftentimes far after staff clocks out for the day. She is dedicated and diligent, always putting the needs of the individuals and the program first. She leads by example and does a difficult job with the utmost professionalism. There is no doubt that her 20+ years of experience at Melwood is an asset to both the participants and staff.

Grounds Maintenance

Doug Knowles, Site Supervisor, (DOE): Doug has been with Melwood for over 20 years. He is a great asset to Melwood. He is very caring and a dedicated employee that does whatever he needs to do to help his employees in any way possible. For instance, when two of Doug’s hearing impaired employees were waiting to receive their specialized phones, Doug made sure his workers understood their tasks for the day by writing them down. This is just one example of Doug’s devotion to his job and Melwood’s mission.

Christopher Archer (Landscape Worker, DHR): Christopher has been employed at Melwood for a little over 11 years. Each day, he is willing to go above and beyond his duties. When needed, Christopher always gives a helping hand to other Contract Sites. He is a very caring, polite, and hardworking gentleman. He always takes pride in what he does. Christopher has great potential to move up the ladder in the near future.

Other Facilities Maintenance Employee/Contract Site Manager

Donald Paige, Greenhouse Laborer, (DHR): Donald is a great worker in the Garden Center. He approaches every task with vigor and readiness. He never complains and always follows through to ensure each task is completed correctly. He is truly a great addition to the Melwood team.

Yvonne Scott (Site Supervisor, US Coast Guard): Yvonne goes above and beyond to not only make sure that the day shift is up to par, but the evening shift is too. She has been with the US Coast Guard contract for about 19 years. Yvonne is able to take on additional responsibilities when the Project Manager is not on site in order to ensure all daily needs are met.

Custodial Worker

Margaret Hamilton, Foreman, Goddard: Margaret is an exceptional employee. She has a willingness to exercise servant-leadership, takes initiative, and accepts and carries out additional responsibilities beyond regular job assignments for the good of the department as a whole. Her commitment to quality in carrying out job responsibilities is something to be honored and recognized. She is definitely an asset to Melwood’s Custodial Department at Goddard. Margaret constantly has a positive attitude toward her role, her co-workers, and the customer; and she serves as a role model to many others.

Michael Barnes (Custodial Worker, Navy Yard/JBAB): Michael Barnes has been employed with Melwood for 10 years. During his tenure with the company, he has significantly progressed in the custodial field. Although Michael is a custodial worker, he has also taken on the responsibility of being the WNY/JBAB utility worker. During the course of his daily custodial responsibilities, Michael makes sure he has time to install and replace dispensers on a 2.2 million square foot facility, repair vacuum cleaners, replace filters on the Melwood office air conditioner units, and move equipment and furniture. Michael has an outstanding working relationship with the staff and management. He also has the drive for learning new skills that will help further develop his career.

Shared Services

Melanie Magness, HR Generalist, (DHR): Since Melanie joined the Human Resources team, specifically focusing on the Community Services Division, she has been instrumental in not only dealing with the sticky HR situations that face all employers, but she does her job in an unbiased, compassionate, and professional manner. Her willingness to coach and counsel goes a long way. She is always a phone call away, and has helped to diffuse difficult and intricate situations on a daily basis. Her professional approach and positive attitude is a breath of fresh air. She is a definite asset to the Human Resources Department and to Melwood.

Kimberly Visek (Manager IP Planning and Stakeholder Relations, DHR): Kim is a team player with a friendly attitude. She goes above and beyond to assist where needed. She played an essential role as we were getting our licensure audit from OHCQ (Office of Health Care Quality) for our DDA services. She was also a lead for CSD when CARF was completing their on-site audit. In addition, Kim developed activities and schedules for the teen group for the first few weeks of camp. Throughout all of these additional responsibilities, Kim has not overlooked her own job tasks.

About Melwood

Melwood is one of the largest employers of people with disabilities in the country, employing more than 1,600 workers – nearly 1,000 of whom are people with disabilities. Melwood offers job placement, job training, life skills for independence, and support services to more than 2,500 people each year in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Melwood also has an inclusive summer camp program for children and provides employment and support services to veterans and active-duty military members who have experienced service-related trauma or injury. For more information, visit

Media Inquiries

Jewelyn Cosgrove
Vice President of Government and Public Relations
O: 240-846-3952
[email protected]


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