NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 8, 2016) – A dynamic duo received the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District’s Hedgehog Award today in recognition of work that streamlined and standardized the process for preparing and obtaining approval of interagency agreements.
Lt. Col. Stephen Murphy, Nashville District commander, lauded Kathryn Firsching, assistant district counsel, and Mary Lewis, interagency coordinator, for reducing the time it takes to process interagency and international services and Economy Act agreements with other federal, state and local stakeholders from three months to only one during a ceremony at the headquarters.
“When folks get together we are greater than the sum of our parts,” Murphy said. “In effect, they created much needed efficiencies to the interagency agreement approval process. Consequently, the district is in a position to not only procure services from other organizations quickly, but also be more responsive to the needs of other agencies.”
Firsching and Lewis took the initiative to streamline and standardize the process for preparing and obtaining approval of interagency agreements, researching the relevant legal authorities, compiling requisite documents, and drafting an approval process. They also held training sessions for employees responsible for preparing interagency agreements, processing military interdepartmental purchase requests, and administering contracts for other agencies.
“They spent several months working on this. They ultimately trained 75 people and helped educate them on what they were doing,” said Mike Wilson, deputy district engineer for Project Management for the Nashville District. “What used to take three months to do is now streamlined down to just one month. I appreciate their passion in doing this. This is a great initiative.”
Wilson also noted that two dozen interagency agreements executed annually will be positively affected by the changes, saving time and money.
Lewis and Firsching both said they really enjoyed working together on the project and overcoming the obstacles in order to improve a process.
The Hedgehog Award is given quarterly by the Nashville District to individuals or team of employees to recognize excellence.
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