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For Release: Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Broome County DEC Official Receives Public Service Excellence Award from New York State Academy for Public Administration

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) today commended Larry Lepak, an engineer with its Division of Water in Kirkwood, who has been awarded the Public Service Excellence Award by the NYS Academy for Public Administration (SAPA). Lepak is one of four individuals and four teams SAPA recognized this year as part of its Public Service Recognition week for outstanding performance by public servants.

"Larry represents DEC in a positive, professional and productive manner with a calm, cool demeanor and genuine interest in serving the needs of the public," DEC Regional Director Ken Lynch said. "After Hurricane Sandy, Larry volunteered to travel to the affected areas and assisted several communities on Long Island to help them rebuild in a manner that is consistent with floodplain management requirements."

"Larry exemplifies a person who has consistently devoted his long public service career to the safety of the people of our state day-in and day-out," said Paul Shatsoff, Chairman of SAPA. "The fact that he stands out among his colleagues for his many achievements and dedication, make me proud, on behalf of the State Academy for Public Administration, to grant Larry this Excellence Award."

Larry has devoted his life to public service through service in the military and 38 years with DEC. His work includes overseeing more than 30 flood control projects in Region 7 consisting of 52 miles of channels, 17.5 miles of levees, three miles of floodwalls, 179 gates, 24 closures and a large dam. During emergency flood events, Larry responds evenings and weekends working overtime and after-hours. Larry has successfully guided DEC's flood control efforts in the Southern Tier through several major flooding events in recent years. In one recent storm producing record flooding, USACE estimated his team's efforts prevented nearly $75 million in potential flood damage. His DEC team was recognized for this work with a certificate of appreciation by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The State Academy for Public Administration was formed in 1974 and provides a unique forum for engaging the skills and talents of senior government professionals in support of the public service in New York State. Its Public Service Excellence Awards honor New York State's workforce.

A ceremony to recognize the awardees was held May 21, 2014 at Rockefeller College's Milne Hall. The event was co-sponsored by the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy.

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