Raleigh Apr 24, 2018 Seventeen state employees with 45 years or more of public service will be honored with the Richard Caswell Award at 2 p.m. today in the North Carolina Museum of History. The recipients, who work at seven state agencies, join the distinguished ranks of long-serving employees who have earned the award since it was established in 1998 in tribute to North Carolina’s first governor. Collectively, the 17 have devoted more than 766 years to public service. “The dedication and commitment demonstrated by each of today’s award recipients cannot be underestimated,” says Barbara Gibson, director of the Office of State Human Resources. “I think of them as superheroes of state government. Their not-so-secret powers include deep institutional knowledge, dedication to their department, and an unwavering enthusiasm for serving the people of our great state.” In addition to Gibson, the ceremony will feature remarks from Kristi Jones, chief of staff to Governor Roy Cooper. Awards will be presented by leaders from the agencies where the honorees serve. Steve Daniels, WTVD news anchor, will serve as emcee. As always, this year’s Caswell Award recipients demonstrate an extraordinary work ethic that contributes to a healthy and productive work culture. One honoree deferred recognition so he could receive his award this year with a colleague of 42 years. Bill Moore of the Department of Environmental Quality was scheduled to be honored last year but asked to wait so he could be recognized with Roger Thorpe. Although they both semi-retired in 2004, they have been “job sharing” the same engineer position for the past 14 years. Recipients of the 2018 Richard Caswell Awards include: Department of Administration: Vernon Shelton Administrative Office of the Courts: Barbara Graves, Betty Kelso, Amelia Linn and Christine Smoot Department of Environmental Quality: Bill Moore, Roger Thorpe Department of Health and Human Services: Arlena Jones, Janice Martin, John Miller, Gerri Nash, Carl Privette, Clementine Pulliam and Charlotte Rouse Department of Revenue: Alice Creech Department of Transportation: Clayton Evans Wildlife Resources Commission: David Allen Richard Caswell was a Maryland native who dedicated most of his adult life to North Carolina. He was the first Orange County clerk of court before taking up arms during the Revolutionary War. He later became a member of the colonial assembly, where he was a champion for free public education. With our young nation’s independence from Britain, Caswell became North Carolina’s first governor, serving from 1776-1780. He next served as state controller, returning to the job of chief executive from 1784-1787. Caswell also was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, then served again as a state senator. In 1789, at age 60, he suffered a fatal stroke while presiding over a senate session in Fayetteville. The Office of State Human Resources will present the Governor’s Awards for Excellence, North Carolina’s highest honor for state employees, on Oct. 23 at the North Carolina Museum of History. For more information about OSHR, or to learn about opportunities to work for the State of North Carolina, visit https://oshr.nc.gov/work-for-nc.