Mayor Nutter announces 2015 winners of Richardson Dilworth Award

Philadelphia, February 27, 2015 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced Barbara McCabe, Director of Stewardship at Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, as the recipient of the fourth annual Richardson Dilworth Award for Distinguished Public Service. The Dilworth Award recognizes the contributions of outstanding city employees whose work embodies excellence in public service.

In addition to the Richardson Dilworth Award for Distinguished Public Service, Mayor Nutter announced two new Dilworth Award categories to honor a greater diversity of talent and experiences of City employees – the “Innovation in Government” award and the “Excellence in Customer Service” award. The award winners are Detective Joseph Murray, who received the “Innovation in Government” award, and Ann Hornbach, Library Supervisor at the Torresdale Neighborhood Library Branch, who received the “Excellence in Customer Service” award.

“Barbara McCabe started at Philadelphia Parks & Recreation at a very young age and has been with us ever since,” said Mayor Nutter. “Barbara is a model public servant who has had a distinguished career working with park volunteers to inspire civic engagement and helping keep our parks and recreation facilities beautiful. Not only does she help organize and manage hundreds of volunteers, but she is not above doing the work on the ground. She personally participates in many Park Cleanups, attends evening community meetings and generally goes above and beyond. I am pleased to recognize her exceptional work. I also want to congratulate the winners of the two new awards, Detective Joseph Murray and Ann Hornbach from the Free Library. The work that our winners do make this City the best place to live, work and raise a family.”

Barbara McCabe first worked for Philadelphia Parks & Recreation (PP&R) when she was 14 doing a summer job as a member of Youth Corps. She continued to work for the Department during summers while she attended college at Penn State. She has been with the department since 1985. After graduation, she served as an Assistant Recreation Leader at the Houseman Recreation Center. Beginning in 1999, Ms. McCabe was named and currently serves as the Director of Stewardship for PP&R, providing support for park friends groups throughout the city to organize cleanup events and beautification projects, restoration services, resource management, and advocacy.

“I am very grateful and humbled by this special recognition. I am proud to represent Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, where I get to work with our park volunteers who not only help maintain our parks but also bring life and character into them,” said Barbara McCabe. “Our more than 80 Parks Friends groups across the city spend their time and energy to make our parks cleaner, greener, more vibrant public spaces. I believe the City should help the Friends volunteers realize their goals for our parks. It is their passion, commitment and dedication that motivate me in my work.”

Deputy Mayor Michael DiBerardinis added, “With her resolute determination and work ethic, Barbara has worked with volunteer park friends groups throughout the city particularly those in underserved communities. She is an advocate for green space who appreciates the transformative impact of parks and recreation spaces on the everyday lives of citizens. I am proud that such a committed public servant has received this award, and I know she’s ready for the work ahead of her to build on and improve our parks system.”

Barbara McCabe was selected from 160 nominations of City employees from all across government.  Nominations came from City employees, managers and the general public. The award honors a current, fulltime executive branch employee with at least three years of continuous service and no recent disciplinary violations. The award is sponsored by Dilworth Paxson LLP and Independence Blue Cross and is staffed by The Fund for Philadelphia, Inc.

The Richardson Dilworth Award for “Innovation in Government” honors a City employee who successfully initiated and implemented an innovative idea that brought about dramatic results. The 2015 recipient is Joseph Murray, a Detective in the Southwest Detectives Division of the Philadelphia Police Department.

Police Commissioner Ramsey said, “Detective Joe Murray is a dedicated member of the Philadelphia Police Department who has shown initiative by using social media to better communicate with the citizens we serve. He successfully connects with residents to provide crime updates, get feedback and nurture an added link to people in the community. I would like to congratulate him on receiving this honor.”

The Richardson Dilworth Award for “Excellence in Customer Service” honors a City employee who provided extraordinary service delivered with ingenuity, energy and compassion. The 2015 recipient is Ann Hornbach who serves as a Library Supervisor at the Torresdale Neighborhood Library Branch.

Siobhan Reardon, President and Director of the Free Library of Philadelphia, added, “Ann works diligently as a children’s librarian and manager of the Torresdale Neighborhood Library. She is dedicated to the children and families of her community, and she brings a tireless sense of service to ensuring that all children have the ability to read and learn. I am delighted that we can honor her commitment and tenacity through this distinguished award.”

“The Richardson Dilworth Award honors those public servants who go above and beyond the call of duty to provide assistance, services and expertise to the citizens of Philadelphia,” said Joe Jacovini of Dilworth Paxson, LLP. “The Selection Panel was impressed by the breadth of knowledge and experiences of this year’s nominees. I would like to congratulate Barbara McCabe this year’s Dilworth Award winner as well as the recipients of the two newly created awards, Detective Joseph Murray and Ann Hornbach. Each of the winners displayed ingenuity, dedication and strength of character, which honor the legacy of Mayor Dilworth.”

Dan Hilferty, President and CEO of Independence Blue Cross, said “Mayor Richardson Dilworth instituted reforms in Philadelphia that continue to reverberate through the city to this day. His legacy of ethical, service-oriented government is exemplified in this year’s Richardson Dilworth Award recipients who have each demonstrated an overwhelming commitment to the citizens of Philadelphia.”

The selection panel members are:

  • Joseph Jacovini (Co-Chair), Dilworth Paxson LLP;
  • Dan Hilferty (Co-Chair), Independence Blue Cross;
  • Nina Ahmad, Pryme Jenomix, LLC;
  • Bishop Audrey Bronson, Sanctuary Church of the Open Door;
  • George Burrell, Esq., Universal Companies;
  • John Chin, Chinatown CDC;
  • Patricia Coulter, Urban League of Philadelphia;
  • Helen Cunningham, Samuel S. Fels Fund;
  • Deborah Dilworth Bishop;
  • Liz Dow, Leadership Philadelphia;
  • Marcy Feldman Rost, Independence Blue Cross, (designate for Dan Hilferty);
  • Cynthia Figueroa, CONGRESO;
  • Joseph Frick, Diversified Search;
  • Susan O. Jaffe, Zoning Board of Adjustment;
  • Charisse Lillie, Comcast Corporation;
  • Ed McBride, PECO;
  • Judith Mondre, Mondre Energy, (designate for Rob Wonderling);
  • Stella Tsai, Archer & Greiner, P.C.; and
  • Anna Verna, Former City Council President.


For more information on the Dilworth Award, visit In 2013, a video highlighting the Richardson Dilworth Award was produced and released. The video can be found at

Posted in Mayor Announcements, Mayor's Press Releases
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