2021 Thomas S. Green Public Service Award Recipients Announced


Date: May 11, 2021
Contact: Paul Matthews, Executive Director & CEO
508 479 8234,

Worcester Regional Research Bureau announces recipients of the 2021 Thomas S. Green Public Service Awards

The Worcester Regional Research Bureau is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2021 Thomas S. Green Public Service Awards. The Green Awards publicly recognize the efforts of individuals exhibiting:

  • exceptional competence and efficient handling of all assigned responsibilities;
  • enthusiastic performance of tasks above and beyond the call of duty;
  • cooperative, helpful, and friendly attitude toward the public and fellow employees; and
  • community involvement outside the scope of job-related responsibilities.

This year, The Research Bureau honors six employees from across the region who have made outstanding contributions to public service. The following recipients embody the ideals of the Thomas S. Green Public Service Awards.

  • Yaffa Fain, Worcester Cultural Development Division
    • Yaffa Fain started at the city as an intern and is now a vital member of the cultural team as a Program Assistant. She is a talented community organizer, creative problem solver, detailed coordinator, and flexible leader. When the pandemic hit, Ms. Fain stepped up, “she embodies Worcester Together in a most meaningful manner.” She works tirelessly on behalf of Worcester and its cultural community.
  • Cherisa Hernandez, Worcester Public Schools
    • Cherisa Hernandez is not only a Mathematics Teacher at South High School but also a Clinical Professor at Worcester State University, training the next generation of teachers, and as the Founding Coordinator and grades 5-6 mathematics teacher in the Black Excellence Academy. Through all of these endeavors, Ms. Hernandez goes above and beyond the call of duty, “her colleagues, graduate students and community partners continue to rely on her and her “can do” approach.”
  • Jeffrey Howe, Fitchburg Police Department
    • Jeffrey Howe is a Lieutenant Commander in the Community Engagement Unit, he is the community liaison and oversees traffic and K-9 units as well as school resource officers. Lt. Howe is thoughtful, accessible, innovative, authentic, and deeply invested in his work. His passion and authenticity are evident to all who meet him. As a 25-year member of the FPD, he is a “shining example of excellence in public service.”
  • Effy Larkin, Worcester Human Resources
    • Effy Larkin is a Principal Staff Assistant in Human Resources and “go-to” person, responsible for managing numerous important projects for the department. Ms. Larkin’s dedication and hard work is second to none. When the city shut down, she was quick to volunteer to work at the Emergency Operations Center and Health Department taking on additional work far above her own responsibilities and excelling. A nominator wrote, “her work ethic is extraordinary and her commitment amazing.”
  • Edgar Luna, Worcester Executive Office of Economic Development
    • Edgar Luna is a Business Development Manager for the city of Worcester. A true renaissance man, Mr. Luna coordinates Worcester’s film industry, supported the 2020 Census count and election operations, provides translation services for multiple City departments, assisted with Worcester’s vaccination or testing sites, and regularly collaborates with community organizations serving the Latino community. A nominator described him as “the definition of a true public servant”
  • William Mosley, Worcester Fire Department
    • William Mosley joined the WFD in 2010 climbed the ranks to Captain and Diversity Officer for the WFD, prior to that he served for the Worcester Police Department for ten years. Captain Mosley is transforming the Departments recruiting program and having significant impacts. He continues to push for change and puts the work in to make that change happen, “he is a role model for his Worcester Fire Department colleagues, young people in the City, and for all public employees.”

The Award is named in memory of Thomas S. Green, a founder of The Research Bureau and one of its original Directors. Mr. Green was a civic leader for many decades and a Vice President of Norton Company (now Saint-Gobain). This is the thirty-third annual Green Awards presentation, which has honored 128 public servants over the past three decades.

The Research Bureau’s Award Committee, composed of representatives from diverse community organizations, selected the recipients from nominees submitted by the public. This year’s committee includes: Chair Ellen Ganley, Che Anderson, Joyce Augustus, Jennifer Davis Carey, Dan DiTullio, Kathleen Gagne, Alex Guardiola, Karen Ludington, Paul Matthews, Kate McEvoy, Dave Nordman, Hilda Ramirez, Todd Rodman, Hank Stolz, and Ron Waddell.

Ellen Ganley, Chair of the Thomas S. Green Public Service Awards Committee, said “As Chair of the TSG Awards Committee, I am impressed by the caliber of this year’s nominees. So many public servants truly stepped up for our communities during this unprecedented and challenging year. This year’s recipients truly represent exceptional public service, well beyond the call of duty.”

Paul Matthews, Executive Director and CEO of The Research Bureau, said “It’s always an honor for the Bureau to recognize exemplary public servants with the Thomas Green Awards, but this year we’ve all experienced firsthand the extraordinary commitment of so many municipal employees through the pandemic response. Our thanks and appreciation go to all of this year’s honorees for extraordinary public service, as well as to their peers and colleagues working in our schools and communities every day.”

A private Awards ceremony will be held for the recipients but it will be recorded for a public viewing party. Details will be announced.

The Research Bureau, founded in 1985, serves the public interest of Greater Worcester by conducting independent, non-partisan research and analysis of public policy issues to promote informed public debate and decision-making. For more information see www.wrrb.org, Facebook (The Research Bureau), and Twitter (@WRRBureau).