Huntington Beach, CA – The 2022 Comp Laude® Award recipients were revealed Tuesday evening, October 4, in an in-person ceremony at the Paséa Hotel and Spa in Huntington Beach, CA.
Yvonne Guibert and Rafael Gonzalez, Esq. co-hosted the awards ceremony that took place on Paséa’s Ocean Lawn against a backdrop of the sun setting over the Huntington Beach Pier. Yvonne Guibert, vice president of BI WorkCompCentral, said “It is my pleasure to honor the late David J. DePaolo by bringing his vision to life. His goal was to change the narrative of our industry to be more positive and I believe we are doing that through the engagement that happens here at Comp Laude®.”
The event borrows its name from the Latin term often used in academia “cum laude” meaning “with honor.” Awards were presented to individuals representing different stakeholder segments of the workers’ compensation industry, even injured workers. Awards were presented in 11 categories:
- Applicant/Claimant Attorney, Bob Burke
- Defense Attorney, Jennifer Morris Jones
- Doctor/Physician (two winners): Dr. Robert Snyder and Dr. Melissa Tonn
- Medical Professional, Silvia Sacalis, PharmD
- Service Provider/Vendor, Eddy Canavan
- Claims Professional, Jill Leonard
- Work Comp Philanthropy, Kristen Chavez
- Risk Professional, Kurt Leisure
- Industry Leader (two winners): Joseph Paduda and Shawn Crosby
- Injured Worker: Victor Aguirre, Tyler Wilson, Brance Tully, Josh Shutts, Dave and Amanda Repsher
- People’s Choice Award, Text-to-Vote winner, Natalie Torres, who presented “It’s All Perfect Already”
A new award was introduced called “Be the Change.” The recipient of this award is hand-selected from the list of finalists, and given to the person who most embraces the Comp Laude® mission and spirit, and has also demonstrated the ability to change the narrative through their actions. The first “Comp Laude® Be the Change” award was presented to Patrizia Cassaniti. She traveled from Sydney, Australia to share the story of her son Christopher and how his tragic death shortly after his 18th birthday inspired her to speak out about workplace safety. Learn more about Patrizia and the foundation she started called “Touched by Christopher” here.
The top two awards, chosen by an advisory committee from the list of finalists, are presented to individuals selected for their career contributions and observed impact on the workers’ compensation industry. This year awards were presented to:
- Magna Comp Laude® (with great honor), Bryan Conner, American Airlines
- Summa Comp Laude® (with highest honor) also known as the David J. DePaolo Award, Dawn Watkins, LAUSD
For a complete list of 2022 nominees and finalists, click here (PDF) and for more information about the Comp Laude® Award vetting process, go here (PDF). All stakeholders are encouraged to nominate a colleague for next year’s awards when we open for nominations. A call for nominations will be issued in January 2023.
Source: Comp Laude/WorkCompCentral