The American Payroll Association’s (APA) annual Meritorious Service Awards are all about service. This year, 10 members received the award for their volunteerism on various committees at the national level and/or at the local chapter level to advance the payroll profession.
Those receiving the awards during Friday’s Awards Luncheon are:
- Stephanie Griger, Payroll Accounting Manager for Ag Processing, Inc.
- Carrie Hovell, CPP, Payroll and Benefits Administrator for Infinitive, Inc.
- John Hunt, CPP, Payroll Coordinator for the City of Alpharetta, Georgia
- Susan Judah, CPP, Senior IT Systems Analyst for the City and County of Denver
- Kristine Nelson, CPP, retired payroll professional
- Vivian Pahati, CPP, Manager of Payroll and Labor Accounting for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory
- Samantha Raffield, CPP, Director of Payroll and Time and Attendance for Harris Health System
- Diane Simpson, CPP, Payroll Manager of the Americas for PayPal
- John Verley, CPP, Director of Payroll for Sutter Health
- Lisa Vandervelden, CPP, Human Resources Manager for Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP
“I’ve had great mentors in this organization at the local and national levels," Hovell said. "I appreciate every opportunity that APA has given me, and I promise this won’t be the end.”
Hunt said he used to feel "small and insignificant" within APA as a one-person payroll department.
"Then I got involved with APA’s Government Relations Task Force, where they emphasized that everyone has a different viewpoint, and my input was vital regardless of the size of my organization," he said. "So, I would encourage you, whether your organization is small or large, get in there and volunteer.”
Judah said she stood before the audience “because of the dedication and leadership of others who came before me. I hope that I can set the same example. There’s so much more that I want to do.”
Pahati said she was surprised by the award because her Los Angeles chapter is not as active as other APA chapters.
"I encourage you to go out and volunteer because it pays off," she said, "It’s a good feeling when you can help other people.”
Raffield encouraged newer members to take the leap and become involved.
“Through APA, so many people have done things to help me grow and make me stronger," she said. "When I first joined and saw the leaders in the organization, I said, 'One day I want to become one of them.' To all the newbies out there, leave here with a vision. You can be at the head tables, too.”
Additional reporting by Apryl Motley