Northark Earns Quality Achievement Award
North Arkansas College of Harrison was presented a Commitment Level Award by Grant Tennille, executive director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission during the 19th Annual Awards Celebration for the Governor’s Quality Award Program on September 16th at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock.
A total of 16 Governor’s Quality Awards were presented at the event which was attended by approximately 300 business and civic leaders from throughout Arkansas.
Northark was the only institution of higher education to receive recognition this year. According to a spokesperson from the Arkansas Institute for Performance Excellence 11 higher education institutions have applied for the award since 1995 and five two-year colleges have reached the Commitment level.
“It is such an honor to accept this award,” said Dr. Jackie Elliott. “It is fitting this award is at the Commitment Level. Commitment is one of our institutional values and it signifies our desire to continue the quest for excellence through utilizing processes and measuring overall data to become a premier institution that provides a high quality education to its students.”
Elliott serves as a Peer Corps Reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission and is an Examiner for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.
The awards ceremony included four award levels of Performance Excellence (in descending order of qualifications): the Governor’s Award, the Achievement Award, the Commitment Award and the Challenge Award. Each recipient received a feedback report citing strengths and areas for improvement.
The Governor’s Quality Award program provides opportunities for all organizations in the state to measure their progress in the journey of performance excellence. The award is to be used by businesses, government agencies, schools, churches and all kinds of organizations, including for-profit, not-for-profit, small, large, growing, mature, etc. In short, any it recognizes organizations interested in improving quality, productivity and financial effectiveness.
Organizations who apply to the program answer questions within the Criteria for Performance Excellence to produce an application. Volunteer professionals from organizations across the state are trained as examiners who assess the application, conduct site visits and produce a feedback report. The feedback report tells an organization their strengths and opportunities for improvement using the Criteria as a benchmark. From leadership to results, the process gives an organization insight to where they are in total quality management.
The goal of the Governor’s Quality Award Program is to encourage Arkansas organizations to engage in continuous quality improvement, which leads to performance excellence, and to provide significant recognition to those organizations. Created as a not-for-profit organization, the program is dedicated to assist in building a strong infrastructure for Arkansas businesses. That dedication is reflected in the program’s vision to be a catalyst for excellence in organizational performance. The Governor’s Quality Award program partners with the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce.
The Chairman of the Board of the Governor’s Quality Award program is Cole Williamson, president and CEO of American Data Network. Organizations and companies interested in participating in the program should contact Governor’s Quality Award Executive Director, Sue Weatter with the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce by calling 501-372-2222 or go to www.arkansas-quality.org
Photo: Representatives from North Arkansas College accepted the Commitment level Governor’s Quality Award in recognition of the College’s commitment to excellence. Shown are: (front row) Tommy Flud, business instructor, Dr. Jackie Elliott, Northark president, Matt Miller, Chair Northark Board of Trustees, (back row left) Michelle DeWald, data analyst, Trish Villines, executive assistant to the president, Kara Arnold, digital media instructor, Katherine Vaughn, director of institutional effectiveness and Kris Greening, director of human resources.