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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

PennDOT Honors 30 Employees Across Pennsylvania With Star of Excellence Awards

Local winners Matt Lama and Shawn McFarland were honored this afternoon.

Clearfield, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Secretary Leslie S. Richards today recognized 30 PennDOT employees for their outstanding performance with the Star of Excellence Award, PennDOT’s highest recognition. 

Two employees from PennDOT’s District 2, which represents Cameron, Centre, Clearfield, Clinton, Elk, Juniata, McKean, Mifflin, and Potter counties were among the honorees. 

Local winners Matt Lama and Shawn McFarland were honored this afternoon at an awards luncheon at the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg.

“The Star of Excellence award illustrates that these employees take to heart our mission of providing the most effective and efficient transportation services for the roughly 12 million people of Pennsylvania,” Richards said. “They demonstrate a strong culture of service and caring that makes a big difference for the people of Pennsylvania.”

“Every year, I marvel at the innovations and forward-thinking demonstrated by our Star winners. This year is no exception”, said District 2 Executive Karen Michael. “Matt and Shawn embody the very best that PennDOT has to offer. They work hard, look for solutions, and respond tirelessly to the needs of customers and co-workers. We are thrilled to see their efforts recognized”.

Matt Lama serves District 2 as a Transportation Construction Inspection Supervisor and was the Inspector in Charge for District 2’s 51-mile upgrade project on Routes 44 and 144 in Potter County. This job spanned the 2015 and 2016 construction seasons and featured full depth reclamation on 31 of those 51 total roadway miles. Matt’s diligence, oversight, commitment to customer service, forward thinking, and problem solving skills played important roles in producing a high-quality, finished product.

Shawn McFarland is a 13-year employee of PennDOT and currently serves as the District 2 Structural Control Engineer. Shawn’s work is all about innovations. Shawn has been instrumental in developing innovative tools to assist in the documentation and monitoring of pile driving operations and has assisted in developing a measuring process for internal concrete temperatures during cold-weather curing of bridge decks. Shawn has also developed a payroll data input streaming tool that uses a drop down menu--saving employees time when inputting payroll coding. His innovative ideas continue to save the Department time and money and increase efficiencies.

The Star of Excellence Awards are presented annually to employees who represent the department’s values of service, performance and integrity. The recipients represent a variety of organizational positions, spanning from highway maintenance and driver and vehicle services workers, to traffic control specialists, communications staff and design and engineering specialists.

For more information on PennDOT District 2 and its activities visit