Terry Gerton, president & CEO of NAPA and Bill Valdez, president of the Senior Executives Association, discuss the importance of recognizing federal employees, and why it’s important to change their current perception.
The first full week of May is Public Service Recognition Week. The event has been honoring federal employees at all levels since 1985. According to the organizers, this recognition for government workers is more important than ever. “In the last 70 years, there has been a real change in public attitude about what public service actually means and how it brings value to the lives of everyday Americans. When I say that, I think about the strikes of teachers in various states. They’re public servants, and for many years they felt like they haven’t been acknowledged as public servants,” said Bill Valdez, president of the Senior Executives Association. “I think the same attitude exists here in Washington D.C., where the career public servants do their job and serve the American taxpayer, but there’s this view that they are really not serving the public interest.I think everything we can do to show that the public service remains the key, foundational principle for career civil servants at the local, state or federal level, is important.” “Today’s leaders really need to not just talk about the value public servants, but they need to deliver the value for those public servants. They need to train them, invest in them, invest in the technology that makes them better at what they do, so they can do what they want to, which is deliver better service to the citizens. We need to be talking about this and doing this all of the time,” said Terry Gerton, President & CEO of NAPA.