Public Service Award
Recognizing employees who make our community a better place
The Excellence in Public Service Award Program honors up to three public service employees each year whose work performance and community activities transcend the ordinary. The program, sponsored by the DeVore Foundation, is in its 31st year.
Each award winner is rewarded with a $2500 check, a reception in their honor and the enduring thanks of the community. Through this program, the City of Wichita, Sedgwick County and the Wichita Public Schools also acknowledge the contributions of thousands of other dedicated public servants who, day after day, perform the tasks that make our community a great place to live and work.
The award winners are selected from among thousands of eligible workers and have represented all ranks and levels of public service. Each winner demonstrates some combination of the following attributes essential to excellent public service:
- Exemplary performance that has contributed to the public interest,
- Innovative problem-solving skills that have improved service delivery,
- Adherence to high ethical standards in carrying out job responsibilities, and
- A record of community involvement through participation in civic organization
The nomination window is typically announced in late January.
Prior Wichita Public Schools recipients have represented all facets of the district. See the list below.
2019 Wichita Public Schools Honoree
Carla Breckenridge is a fifth-grade teacher at Buckner Performing Arts and Science Magnet Elementary School. She began her service to the school district in 2000 as a substitute and her love for children and commitment to public education inspired her to become a classroom teacher. Today, she is well respected as an innovative educator and leader among her colleagues.
Breckenridge creates opportunities for her students to learn beyond the confines of the classroom. This year, her students researched the Dockum Sit-In and interviewed Dr. Galen Veasey, a member of the original sit-in, and toured the site of what was formerly the Dockum Drug Store and the memorial erected to commemorate the site of the nation’s first sit-in. Her class was also part of the Dockum Sit-In documentary that aired on KPTS in the fall of 2018. Breckenridge initiated and sponsors an empowerment group for 5th-grade girls to address self-esteem, social skills and healthy choices.
Breckenridge is a member of the Wichita Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc., participating in many of their educational programs and initiatives that support young people through scholarship, community service and sisterhood. She has also been actively engaged with the Wichita Chapter of the Links, Inc. since 1992 and its umbrella program the African American Male Empowerment Institute (AAMEI). Their annual Beautillion encourages scholar-leaders through leadership development and cultural enrichment.
One of Breckenridge’s most impressive contributions is her development of the African American High School Leadership Conference, Leadership U. In 2012, she created the conference, enlisting the help of key community leaders and sponsors to provide an interactive and engaging conference which has now served over 1,120 parents and students.
Breckenridge and her husband, Lorenza, have four grown sons, Lorenza III, Landon, Lyndon and Christian Garner.
Typically, the time to nominate someone for the Excellence In Public Service Award is during the month of February.
Once the nomination window has opened, the information is shared on the district's website and through social media.