Lake Norman & Mooresville

Lake Norman Rotary honors 3 town employees

The Rotary Club of North Mecklenburg recently recognized three municipal employees for the towns of Cornelius, Davidson and Huntersville.

During the club's annual Town Awards of Excellence for Municipal Employees event at the Peninsula Club in Cornelius, three area women were honored for their service to their communities.

The 2010 award winners are Michelle Haines, Huntersville's senior administrative support assistant for the planning department; Jackie Huffman, Cornelius' finance director; and Sandy Kragh, Davidson's administrative planning assistant and town grant writer.

"Michelle, Jackie and Sandy exhibited clear commitment of dedicated service to their respective towns and communities," said David Keith, publicity chairman for the Rotary Club of North Mecklenburg.

"Their high ethical standards, coupled with their service to the towns of Huntersville, Cornelius and Davidson, deserve the appreciation of the entire Lake Norman community."

In Huntersville

Haines, a Huntersville employee since 2008, has instituted new processes that help the town's planning board and zoning board of adjustment operate more efficiently.

She has 20 years of experience as a paralegal in Virginia and North Carolina. She lives in Cornelius with her two children, Jacqueline and Grayson.

"Michelle puts a premium on providing excellent customer service and continually offers suggestions for improving department operations," said Huntersville Planning Director Jack Simoneau.

In Cornelius

Huffman, a Cornelius employee for 10 years, has 15 years of local government experience.

She has led Cornelius during high-growth years as finance director, and under her guidance in April, the town achieved AAA bond rating status from Standard & Poor's and Fitch Ratings. It's the smallest municipality in the state to earn the debt market's highest rating.

She lives in Mooresville with her husband, Bradley, and sons Drew and Lucas.

"Outside of the trust and respect I have for her competency as finance directorthe greatest praise I can offer is that Jackie's diligent work for several years was absolutely key to placing Cornelius in superb financial shape to not only weather the current recession, but to put the town in a position to be upgraded to a AAA bond rating during the recession," said Assistant Town Manager Andrew Grant.

In Davidson

Kragh has been with Davidson since the summer of 2006. She began her 20-year planning career in Logansport, Ind., where she was the assistant planning director.

In the planning department, she serves as the first point of contact for the public. A former member of the Davidson Farmer's Market Board of Directors, she lives in Davidson with her husband, Rex, and daughters Julie and Madeline.

In a recent town newsletter, Davidson communications director Sara-Lynne Levine praised Kragh for her attention to detail, her professionalism and her goal-oriented work ethic, as well as filling the unofficial role of "head staff cheerleader."