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The Best and the Worst of the Week 

Excellence in Government Award winners
honored by the Bureau of Governmental Research as outstanding public employees for 2003 included Jefferson Parish Public Schools principals Julie Berner, Evelyn Soniat and Rita Foster, and community education director Sal LaRock; NOPD Sgt. Manuel Curry; New Orleans City Council fiscal officer Suzanne Mague; Slidell Cultural and Public Affairs director Kelli Gustafson; and the Sale of Adjudicated Property Program staff in the Jefferson Parish Attorney's Office.

David Oreck,
owner of the Oreck Corp., was named "Marketer of the Year" by the New Orleans chapter of the American Marketing Association. The New Orleans resident and vacuum-cleaner mogul, popular on the national lecture circuit, was honored for creative and original marketing and problem-solving. Oreck, who often acts as his own pitchman, is best known for inventing the super-lightweight vacuum cleaner.

New Orleans Habitat for Humanity workers
traveled to Valdosta, Ga., recently to participate in this year's Habitat for Humanity International's Jimmy Carter Work Project. The workers included full-time employees Daniel Haile, Geneva Marney, Valarie Smith and Matt Reha, and full-time volunteers Charlie Adams, Laura Brummer, Jennifer Harms and Meg Schuler. The eight worked with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter in Valdosta, building homes for low-income families.

Michael E. McMahon and Linda G. Bizzarro,
two New Orleans-based assistant U.S. attorneys, were presented with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 2003 Honor Awards for their successful prosecution of Crown Products Inc. of Metairie in the counterfeiting of USDA phytosanitary certificates, which are required for many agricultural exports. The federal prosecutors, and several USDA agents, were presented with the award at a recent ceremony in Washington, D.C.

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