Debbie Martin                   
Executive Secretary
Food Service Office

Letter of Nomination

Children represent the largest population segment of our society experiencing hunger.  Mix in thousands of homeless children caused by Hurricane Ivan and you have the recipe for severe hunger in our county. We all know hungry children have a harder time learning in school, shorter attention span and suffer more absences due to illnesses.  Debbie Martin has tirelessly worked to make sure our counties children are fed.  Debbie unstintingly provides supervision and guidance to assist parents and schools in providing food for over 25,000 children in our school district.  She has worked extremely long days under immense pressure with numerous agencies to qualify over 2,000 school children for free school meals for the rest of this school year because they were left homeless by the devastation of Hurricane Ivan.

I am extremely proud to nominate an expert in Child Nutrition Programs who is trustworthy and honest as the day is long.  Debbie Martin is a cornerstone of our program and a significant reason for its success.   

Administrator’s Letter of Nomination

It is my distinct honor to present our department’s nominee.  Debbie Martin has an ownership mentality in all she does.  She is so dedicated that hours and days of work don’t matter as long as the job gets done.  Versatility, enthusiasm and ceaseless energy are but a few of our nominees’ assets.  This year alone, she:

®  Volunteered to distribute Thanksgiving turkeys to over 200 needy department employees.

®  Volunteered to distribute Christmas pies to over 200 needy department employees.

®  Raised coworker morale by decorating the department work area for Holidays.

® Instrumental in promoting our third annual “open house” inter-department goodwill and fellowship by providing 12 days of food and drink for everyone during the Christmas season.

Every second, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, every month over the last six years Debbie exemplifies why Santa Rosa County Schools are the best in the state.  Debbie works impeccably with complex programs that have intense federal and state oversight. Error in these programs has significant financial penalties. We commonly say, we all make mistakes, not Debbie.  After painstaking reviews of thousands of documents by state and federal auditors, she passed with zero errors.

Our programs did not just happen overnight or even during the past decade.  They have a long history of more than a hundred years of development, of testing and evaluating, and of constant research and change to provide the best in nutrition, nutrition education, and food service for the nation’s millions of children in school.  Debbie has a plan, not just a dream on how to apply those programs to feed hungry children in Santa Rosa County.

Hurricane Ivan left thousands homeless. Debbie cut through jurisdictional lines, added clarity to confusion and provided clear communication on how to feed over 2,000 hungry children free for the rest of this school year. 

Debbie goes the extra mile to make sure the families of over 25,000 Santa Rosa School Children understand free and reduced meal policies and if qualified take full advantage. She lead an effort to make sure appropriate application translation was available for non-English speaking populations.  Applications are now available on the WEB in Spanish. Over 115,510 recipients and 56,388 families are on temporary assistance for needy families in the state of Florida.  She provides personal follow-up to Santa Rosa households that do not respond to a verification request to make sure if there is a need, they receive assistance. 

Debbie Martin has won the respect from peers, employees and the school community.  Her interpersonal skills are exemplary.  Her dress and demeanor are above reproach.  I am blessed to work with her.