Friday, February 26, 2010

Meet Our Outstanding FEOY Nominees

Recently employees throughout the district had an opportunity to recognize outstanding co-workers with nominations to the "Federal Employee of the Year" Awards Program. Nominees consistently perform above and beyond the call of duty ... deserve recognition for heroic deeds demonstrated in life-threatening situations ... volunteer their time to benefit others in the community ... or could be a combination of any of the above! Nominees will be honored at a luncheon on Friday, May 7 (location to be determined).

Congratulations to the following outstanding employees who've been nominated in their respective categories:

Shequeta Blake (Hollywood CS)
JoAnn Goodrich (West Palm Beach CS)

Ernesto Cintado (Miami PO)
Kenneth Franz (SFL&DC)
John Howard (Miami P&DC)
Carl Powell (West Palm Beach P&DC)

Tammie Jo Cadwell (Fort Lauderdale - NALC)
Wendy Carlisle (Key West)
St. Amand Etienne (South Florida P&DC)
Marianne Giambrone (Fort Lauderdale CS)
Starr Hunter (West Palm Beach CS)
Starr Hunter (West Palm Beach - NALC)
Tatyana Kats (South Florida P&DC)
John Ledley (Opa Locka CS)
Marie Lochard-Lubin (Human Resources)
Laurie Miale (Miami - NALC)
Melvin Mills (Miami Beach CS)
James Patterson (Fort Lauderdale CS)
Margaret Stark (Pompano Beach CS)

Jose Puig (District IT)

The People's Choice

The U.S. Postal Service has won the People’s Choice Stevie Award for Favorite Customer Service in the category of Public Services and Education. The Stevie Awards were created in 2002 to generate public recognition for the efforts, accomplishments and positive contributions of companies and business people worldwide. This was the first Stevie Awards competition in which the general public voted for their favorite customer service providers. More than 87,000 votes were cast during the competition.

March is National Women's History Month

March is National Women's History Month.

If you're a female employee who'd like to share a story on your career experiences and/or offer some career tips to other employees, please send your comments (150 words or less) to Please include your name, work location, number of years in service, and a digital photo (optional). Your comments (and photo) will be posted on the blog throughout March.

In the meantime ... Here's some interesting information on female Postmasters ... Over the course of its history, the U.S. Postal Service has employed women as Postmasters --- from a single woman at the birth of our country in 1775 until, today, when more women than men head United States Post Offices. Of the nation's 25,410 Postmasters, almost 58 percent --- 14,671 --- are women. Although some refer to the position as "Postmistress," the official title always has been "Postmaster."
Promoting women as managers is a commonplace corporate agenda today; the U.S. Postal Service has done it for centuries.

PMG Potter is Taking Care of Business at Conference with Stakeholders March 2

The way people use mail is changing. The way businesses use mail is changing. Is the Postal Service prepared for this change? What happens if it doesn’t change? The Internet, E-Mail and other electronic diversion and economic recession have had a huge impact on its business.

How can the Postal Service remain a strong competitor in this new communications world over the next 10 years?

Postmaster General Jack Potter will host a conference March 2 in Washington DC to address these questions. He will announce an action plan that promotes a new flexible, agile business model that can quickly adapt to America’s changing mailing habits and preferences. The conference will be attended by mailing industry leaders, union leadership, members of Congress and other key stakeholders.

Look for local Newsbreaks with the details of the plan and other information about the conference next week.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

BBC Films Story at Milam Dairy PO, Miami ISC

BBC crew videotapes and interviews Miami MCSO Ernie Cintado on the value of Priority Mail.

British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Producer Ricardo Benassi, based in Miami to report on stories in the United States and Latin America, contacted the South Florida Corporate Communications Office about "the evolving Postal Service." Arrangements were made for Benassi and his camera crew to conduct an interview, in Spanish, with Miami Manager, Customer Service Operations Ernie Cintado.

During an interview at the Milam Dairy Branch, Ernie emphasized that the Postal Service is operating more as a business --- and also took the opportunity to promote Express Mail and Priority Mail products. When asked about some customers communicating via E-Mail instead of through the letter mail, Ernie quipped "Some people may use the internet, but you can't deliver a package through your computer!" Ernie continued the interview in the retail lobby where he purchased a Valentine card from the new greeting card display --- also captured on film.

The BBC crew then travelled to the Miami ISC where Plant Manager Benjamin Vidal gave a tour of mail processing operations. The crew was fascinated with the processing of international mail, particularly packages destinating Latin America. They also were impressed to be videotaping in one of only five ISCs in the nation --- and that the Miami ISC was known as "the gateway to the Caribbean and Latin America.”

Thanks to Ernie and Ben for promoting the Postal Service and its employees!

To view the video news story, click on the following BBC link (remember to select the "Control" button) ...

Making Sense of the Census

"We Can't Move Forward Until You Mail It Back." That's the message being communicated to the public about the importance of filling out and returning your Census form.

To help expand the U.S. Census Bureau’s extensive public outreach and communications campaign encouraging Americans to participate in Census 2010, on Friday, February 19, the Postal Service will begin displaying Census posters in postal retail lobbies.
The U.S. Census Bureau this month will enter the first of six separate Census mailings slated to be sent out through mid-April. Scheduled for in-home delivery February 17–19, the initial mailing will consist of approximately 10 million “advance” letters mailed to residences in rural areas.
These letters will alert residents that the Census questionnaire is coming and tell them what to expect. That will be followed in March by similar “advance” letters mailed to residences in suburban and urban areas.
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that each percentage point of non-responding residents costs the federal government $80 million to $90 million because of the need to follow up with in-person visits from census takers.

With Intelligent Mail (IM) services, however, these costs will be reduced by several million dollars because the government will not have to send out census takers to those residences that are returning a questionnaire. When an IM barcoded questionnaire hits the postal network, the Census Bureau will know that it’s on its way back.

Football Fans: 'Super' Souvenirs on Sale

The Super Bowl is over, but football fans can still get a kick out of the limited edition Super Bowl commemorative souvenir envelope. The front and back of this collectible item are posted above. Score a touchdown and order your numbered, limited edition today ... only $10 each. For additional information, fans may contact Zeida Alvarez at 305-470-0628, Tashia Romano-Kravitz at 954-527-3281, or JoAnn Goodrich at 561-697-2145.

Free Pretzels Give Twist to Your Shopping

Auntie Anne's is giving away free pretzels 10 am - 3 pm on Saturday, February 20.

No purchase is necessary for a free full size original or cinnamon sugar pretzel, which normally sell for about $2.50.

Just show up at the Auntie Anne's locations at the Galleria in Fort Lauderdale, Westfield Broward Shopping Center in Plantation, Pembroke Lakes Mall in Pembroke Pines, Coral Square in Coral Springs, Sawgrass Mills in Sunrise or Aventura Mall.

Happy snacking!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Dollars & Sense: Rated 'A' for All Ages"

National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW) is March 7-13. The observance will include a consumer education campaign to encourage individuals across the country to take full advantage of their consumer rights. This year’s theme — "Dollars & Sense: Rated 'A' for All Ages" — highlights the importance of using good consumer sense at every stage of life – from grade school to retirement.
South Florida District Consumer Affairs Manager Ellen Uptgrow and her team of consumer education experts are planning several promotional activities ... Tune in to the blog and look for local Newsbreaks for additional information.

Presenting the CFC A-Team!

Hats off to the CFC A-Team! "A" stands for "astonishing" as in the efforts of the team and in the number of employees who pledged to many charitable organizations under the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) umbrella. Thanks also to the employees who contributed to helping less fortunate persons in our community, across the country, and around the world! Your generous contributions will make a difference in the lives of many individuals!

Front (L to R): Damaris Agrait, Manager, Learning, Development & Diversity; Jann Miller, Manager, Human Resources; Patricia Nolan, Human Resources Specialist and CFC Loaned Executive; Back (L to R): Michelle Butler, Supervisor, Customer Service (Hialeah) and CFC Loaned Executive; Mahurley Preston, Mail Handler (WPB P&DC) and CFC Loaned Executive; and Jennifer Thonus, Mail Handler (SF L&DC) and CFC Loaned Executive.

USPS, Inspection Service Help Haiti Recover

Miami ISC Mail Handler Equipment Operator Godfrey Williams safely loads pallets of bottled water. Photo: Donna Demirgian
Miami ISC Plant Manager Benjamin Vidal (right) discusses logistics for the bottled water shipment with Salvation Army representative. Photo: Donna Demirgian

In the month following the earthquake in Haiti, the U.S. Postal Service continues to provide relief assistance -- through the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and Miami International Service Center.

A team of six Postal Inspectors has gone to Haiti to conduct security assessments and to help prepare for the restoration of mail service. The Director General of Haiti Post reports that all postal facilities in Port-au-Prince were destroyed. But none of the more than 600 Haitian postal employees died while on duty.

More than 1,000 cases of bottled water stored at the Materiel Distribution Center in Topeka KS for emergencies were shipped to the Miami ISC. Plant Manager Benjamin Vidal and Air Transportation Specialist Donna Demirgian made arrangements with the Salvation Army to transport the water to Haiti.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

NRLCA Official Partners in NALC Food Drive

The National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association (NRLCA) — a longtime supporter of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) National Food Drive — has become a full national partner in the May 8 drive to “Stamp Out Hunger.”

In its new national role, NRLCA will assist the drive’s co-sponsors by promoting the collection of non-perishable food on the second Saturday in May, encouraging increased voluntary participation by rural carriers in the effort and helping deliver donations to local food banks, pantries and shelters.

NRLCA joins the Postal Service, Campbell Soup Company, Valpak, the AFL-CIO, United Way Worldwide and its local United Ways, and Feeding America — the nation’s food bank network — as national sponsors.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Special Postcard Marks 50th Anniversary at Flagler Museum in Palm Beach 33480

Palm Beach Postmaster Dianna Dobson is holding the newspaper article promoting the museum's anniversary and special event cachets. Photo: JoAnn Goodrich

Saturday was a family affair.

The Postal Service joined the family of Henry M. Flagler (and the Palm Beach community) in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Flagler Museum.

A history lesson ... Back in the late 19th Century, from St. Augustine to Miami, Flagler built a series of luxury hotels that quickly established tourism as a mainstay of Florida's economy. His Florida East Coast Railway not only connected his hotels, but opened the state to growth of all kinds. Through his Model Land Company, Flagler encouraged the agricultural development of millions of acres, thus establishing agriculture as another mainstay of the state's economy. He also accomplished the most ambitious engineering feat ever attempted by a private citizen, the building of the Over-Sea Railroad, covering more than 155 miles from Miami to Key West.

Now fast forward to Saturday, February 6 ...

Palm Beach Postmaster Dianna Dobson gave a presentation on the history of the museum and promoted a commemorative special event postcard with a stamp honoring Jean Flagler Matthews, the Museum's founder and Henry Flagler's granddaughter. Museum President George G. Matthews, the great-grandson of Henry Flagler, signed each postcard which included a Centennial Coin struck in 2002 to recognize the 100th anniversary of Whitehall.

When it was completed in 1902, Whitehall, Henry Flagler's Gilded Age estate in Palm Beach, was hailed by the New York Herald as "more wonderful than any palace in Europe, grander and more magnificent than any other private dwelling in the world." Today, Whitehall is a National Historic Landmark and is open to the public as the Flagler Museum, featuring guided tours, changing exhibits, and special programs.
The Postal Service generated $1027.58 during the two-hour event: 1 book of Forever Stamps = $8.80; 9 sheets of Lunar Stamps $4.40 each = $39.60; Stamps purchased via by The Flagler Museum for 50th Anniversary = $979.18.
Special thanks to Customer Relations Coordinator JoAnn Goodrich for assisting the museum in planning its anniversary celebration and to Sonya Owens, Sales & Service Associate at the West Palm Beach Main Office, for hand-canceling the postcards to commemorate this special occasion.

Customer Kudos for Surfside Postal Duo

TO: Lorraine Jimenez, Manager, Surfside Branch

Dear Ms. Jimenez,

I am writing this letter to commend two employees, Mr. Julio Ruiz and Mr. Wayne Baenen, for their excellent work.

I went to the Surfside Post Office, and Mr. Ruiz and Mr. Baenen assisted me very nicely. Their customer service skills and their willingness to assist customers impressed me a great deal. They went out of their way to help me with a package I wanted to send, wrap it and get it ready to be shipped. Not only that, I noticed how helpful Mr. Ruiz was to a customer who was before me in the line. I listened how he answered all the customer's questions very patiently and in a very friendly manner, showing respect and concern.

As a customer, I can assure you that Mr. Ruiz and Mr. Baenen are great assets to your branch. I think that whenever we see or receive such excellent service, it shouldn't go unnoticed.

I wish all of you the best for the New Year.

Ana M. Barreto

"Super" Souvenirs Still Selling

The Super Bowl may have come and gone ... but souvenir envelopes commemorating the Saints and Colts are on sale in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach. Numbered, limited editions at $10 each are available while supplies last. Football fans throughout the district may contact the following individuals for additional information:

Zeida Alvarez, Miami Post Office, 305-470-0628
Tashia Romano-Kravitz, Fort Lauderdale Main Office, 954-527-3281
JoAnn Goodrich, West Palm Beach Main Office, 561-697-2145

Black Heritage Stamps Tell Many Stories

Harriet Tubman, an African-American abolitionist, humanitarian, and Union spy during the American Civil War, was honored on the first stamp in the Black Heritage Stamp series which began in 1978. Tubman was born into slavery and after escaping, made thirteen missions to rescue over 70 slaves using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad.

Booker T. Washington was the first African American commemorated on a U.S. postage stamp in 1940. Since that time, the Postal Service has issued more than 100 stamps featuring African Americans and historical milestones in African-American culture. To learn more about African-American leaders, inventors, educators, scientists, entrepreneurs, entertainers, and athletes on stamps, visit and type "Black Heritage" in the search box. There's also Publication 354, "African Americans on Stamps: A Celebration of African-American Heritage."

Flower Power: Orchids! A Cultural Odyssey

After the snow has cleared and the sun has returned to the mid-Atlantic states, consider a cultural journey with the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington DC. Its orchid exhibit — including a display of postcards and orchid stamps — explores the ways orchids have affected the lives of people around the world.

Discover orchids in arts, literature, exploration, jewelry, trade and business. Also, visitors can travel the world within the garden’s Conservatory and discover how influential and magnificent orchids have become.

The exhibit, a collaborative effort involving the collections of the U.S. Botanic Garden and the Smithsonian Institution Horticultural Services Division, is open through April 11.

"Egg-stra, Egg-stra ... Read All About These 'Super' Breakfast Offers

If you watched the Super Bowl, you already know about Denny's commercials taking a humorous look at the chickens who must lay all the eggs for free breakfasts. And the chickens will be "egg-stra" busy tomorrow!

From 6 am to 2 pm on Tuesday, February 9, customers can order a free Grand Slam breakfast at participating restaurants. And, starting Wednesday, the company will be refilling more than beverages ... Denny's is giving away endless fries and pancakes for a limited time.

Not to be outdone by the competition ...

Be sure to mark Tuesday, February 23, on your calendar. In observance of "National Pancake Day," participating International House of Pancake restaurants (a.k.a. IHOP) will be serving a free short stack of pancakes from 7 am to 10 pm on that date.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

USPS Salutes Distinguished Sailors on Stamps

Today the Postal Service honors four heroes of the U.S. Navy at a dedication ceremony for the Distinguished Sailors collectible stamps at the United States Navy Memorial in Washington DC.

The First-Class Mail stamps commemorate four members of the Navy who served with bravery and distinction during the 20th Century.

William Sims (1858-1936) was a commander of U.S. naval forces in European waters during World War I and an outspoken reformer and innovator who helped reshape the Navy into a modern fighting force.

Arleigh Burke (1901-1996) served an unprecedented three terms as Chief of Naval Operations, the Navy’s highest-ranking officer. He oversaw development of nuclear-powered submarines and initiated the Polaris Ballistic Missile Program.

John McCloy (1876-1945) won two Medals of Honor. The first was for a rescue mission during the Boxer Rebellion in which he was wounded. McCloy earned his second Medal of Honor during the 1914 Mexican Revolt for intentionally exposing his boat to draw enemy fire to identify their positions for retaliation by U.S. cruiser gunfire.

Doris Miller (1919-1943) was the first black American hero of World War II. During the attack on Pearl Harbor, Miller helped rescue scores of shipmates wounded or trapped in the wreckage. Miller later manned a 50-caliber machine gun, firing on Japanese aircraft, until ordered to abandon his position.

The stamps are available for sale nationwide starting today.

Love Stamp Art Says "P.S. I Love You"

When Arjang & Company’s managers decided on a name for their collection of USPS-licensed watches and jewelry, they thought of the words found at the end of many love letters. The “P.S. I Love You” collection uses Love Stamp art for its wristwatches and fine jewelry, decorative wall clocks, and porcelain gift sets.

Valentine’s Day is less than two weeks away, but there’s still time to take advantage of Arjang & Company’s exclusive offer to postal employees — 40 percent off its unique watches. The discount is available at Enter coupon code POSTAL at checkout. Or call 877-774-9682.

You'll Love the Valentine Selection at Our POs

Custodian Mike Adams loves the selection of Valentine cards available at the Fort Lauderdale Main Office. Photo: Tashia Romano-Kravitz

Need a Valentine card? Why drive to the local drug store when you can shop at the Post Office?

Now you can buy, address, and mail a greeting card --- including Valentine sentiments --- while conducting other postal business.

The Postal Service has expanded its greeting card network nationwide … just in time for Valentine’s Day. The South Florida District has added 27 sites, a total of 44 locations now offering cards for Valentine’s Day and many other occasions. New additions to the greeting card network include:

Atlantic Branch, 8801 W Atlantic Blvd, Coral Springs
Avenue of the Americas Postal Store, 1455 NW 107 Ave, Miami
Blue Lagoon Branch, 6200 NW 7 St, Miami
Coconut Creek Branch, 4233 W Hillsboro Blvd, Coconut Creek
Country Lakes Postal Store, 13520 SW 152 St, Miami
Davie Branch, 3850 S University Dr, Davie
El Mercado Postal Store, 2440 W 60 St, Hialeah
Father Felix Varela Branch, 14310 SW 8 Street, Miami
Flamingo Postal Store, 12590 Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines
Golden Isles Finance Unit, 1800 E Hallandale Beach Blvd, Hallandale
Hallandale Post Office, 500 S Federal Hwy, Hallandale
Haverhill Branch, 3900 Haverhill Rd North, West Palm Beach
Hillcrest Postal Store, 4429 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood
Jensen Beach Post Office, 2301 NE Savannah Rd, Jensen Beach
Norland Branch, 18640 NW 2 Ave, Miami
Oceanview Station, 445 W 40 St, Miami Beach
Olympia Heights Branch, 3801 SW 117 Ave, Miami
Palmetto Park Postal Store, 1279 W Palmetto Park Rd, Boca Raton
Palms West Postal Store, 10299 Southern Blvd, Royal Palm Beach
Port Saint Lucie Post Office, 2255 SE Midport Rd, Port Saint Lucie
Sunrise Branch, 3225 N Hiatus Rd, Sunrise
Sunset Branch, 7501 SW 117 Ave, Miami
Surfside Branch, 250 95 St, Surfside
Tequesta Branch, 401 Old Dixie Hwy, Jupiter
Town and Country Postal Store, 8266 Mills Dr, Miami
Tropical Reef Station, 1950 NE 6 St, Pompano Beach
University Postal Store, 7972 Pines Blvd, Pembroke Pines

Note: For a list of the original participating offices (still selling today), please refer to the blog posting, "Greetings and Salutations from a Post Office Near You," dated October 29, 2009.

USPS to Join Palm Beach Community in Celebrating Flagler Museum's 50th Anniversary

The Postal Service will be joining the Palm Beach community in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Flagler Museum.

Palm Beach Postmaster Dianna Dobson will hand cancel a special pictorial postmark to commemorate this special occasion from 10 am to 12 Noon on Saturday, February 6.

The postcard will include a stamp honoring the Museum’s founder and Henry Flagler’s granddaughter --- Jean Flagler Matthews. Each card will be signed by the Flagler Museum’s President and Henry Flagler’s great grandson --- George G. Matthews. A Centennial Coin, struck in 2002 to commemorate Whitehall’s 100th anniversary, also will be affixed to each postcard. Postcards will be sold at $5 each outside the museum's front gate.

When it was completed in 1902, Whitehall, Henry Flagler's Gilded Age estate in Palm Beach, was hailed by the New York Herald as "more wonderful than any palace in Europe, grander and more magnificent than any other private dwelling in the world." Today, Whitehall is a National Historic Landmark and is open to the public as the Flagler Museum, featuring guided tours, changing exhibits, and special programs.

The Flagler Museum is located at Cocoanut Row and Whitehall Way. The museum is open from 10 am until 5 pm, Tuesday through Saturday, and 12 Noon until 5 pm, Sunday. Admission is $18 for adults, $10 for youth ages 13-18, $3 for children ages 6-12, and children under six are free.

More information is available by calling the museum staff at 561- 655-2833 or visiting

Thanks to West Palm Beach Customer Relations Coordinator JoAnn Goodrich for her assistance in planning and promoting this event.

February 4 is "Thank a Mailperson Day"

In all kinds of weather and in all kinds of situations, letter carriers deliver our letters, packages, magazines, and catalogs.

Although the Postal Service has no official motto, the unofficial motto is: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds."

How did this creed originate?

It's the inscription found on the General Post Office in New York City at 8th Avenue and 33rd Street. An architectural firm that designed the Post Office included the inscription. It can be found in the works of Herodotus and describes the expedition of the Greeks against the Persians under Cyrus, about 500 B.C. The Persians operated a system of mounted postal couriers, and the sentence describes the dependability with which their work was done.

So with this in mind, remember to say "thanks" to your carrier who provides outstanding service 12 months a year.

"National Wear Red Day" is Friday, February 5

Marie Lochard-Lubin, Occupational Health Nurse Administrator, encourages administrative personnel to join her in wearing red on Friday, February 5.

Why? It's "National Wear Red Day" which calls attention to the prevention of heart disease.

"Too many women die each year because they are unaware that heart disease is their number one killer. Right now, one in three women die of cardiovascular disease and 90 percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease," said Marie. "The good news is that by taking action, we can beat that statistic."

Marie encourages all women to become an advocate of heart health. Taking care of you is the first priority ... Getting empowered with the facts, finding a community of support, and making healthy changes to your diet and exercise.

"Help spread the word to those you love -- your mother, your sister, your neighbor, your friend ... because when you speak up, you help save lives," she said.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Last Call for "Federal Employee of the Year"

There’s still time to nominate a co-worker for “Federal Employee of the Year” recognition. But you’ll have to act quickly … the deadline to submit nomination packages is Friday, February 5.

Do you have a co-worker who consistently performs above and beyond the call of duty? One who deserves recognition for his or her heroic efforts demonstrated in a life-threatening situation? How about an employee who generously volunteers his or her time to benefit others in the community? These individuals all are worthy candidates for the “Federal Employee of the Year” Awards Program sponsored by the South Florida Federal Executive Board.

Postal nominees will compete with employees from several federal agencies in South Florida. Categories include: Administrative, Clerical/Administrative Support, Law Enforcement, Management (except Agency Head), Professional, Scientific, Service to the Community, Technical/Information Technology, Trades and Crafts, and Valor.

EAS and craft employees may nominate or be nominated. Nomination packages may be downloaded from the district website. Remember that nominations must be based on demonstrated performance and/or community activities between October 1, 2008 and September 30, 2009.

Send your completed nomination package to District Manager Tammy J. Autenrieth by the deadline --- Friday, February 5.

Questions about the nomination process? Contact Damaris Agrait, Manager, Learning Development and Diversity, at 305-470-0881.

Super Bowl Souvenir Envelopes Now Available

The National Football League is authorizing, and the South Florida District is promoting, a 2010 Super Bowl commemorative souvenir envelope honoring the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts.

Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach Postmasters are offering these numbered, limited edition envelopes at $10 each while supplies last. Football fans throughout the district may place an order and send a postal money order or personal check made payable to “Postmaster (Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach).” There’s a one-time shipping and handling fee of $7.25. Envelopes will be mailed within 2 to 4 weeks after Monday, February 8, 2010, via Priority Mail with Signature Confirmation. Mail order envelopes cannot be picked up in person.

Check with your supervisor for an order form attached to the Newsbreak dated 2/3/10.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Black Heritage Stamp is Available in June

February is Black History Month, and this year's theme is "The History of Black Economic Empowerment."

The Postal Service promotes the story of Black Heritage through stamps, celebrating many African American people, places, and achievements. Oscar Micheaux (1884-1951) is the subject of the 33rd stamp in the Black Heritage Series, which goes on sale June 22.

Micheaux wrote, directed, produced, and distributed more than 40 movies during the first half of the 20th century, when African-American filmmakers were rare and support for their work was scarce. His entrepreneurial spirit and independent vision continue to inspire new generations of filmmakers and artists.

There are 40.7 million African Americans living in the United States and they make up 13.5 percent of the total U.S population. As a percentage of U.S. buying power, African Americans represent 8.5 percent, or $913 billion.

What is this Gator Doing on "Groundhog's Day"?

It's "Groundhog's Day" ... and inquiring minds want to know why this alligator has emerged from the depths of the canal behind the Stuart Post Office.
Photo: Janice Zynko

Today is February 2. The groundhog has spoken. And it's bad news.

"Punxsutawney Phil" has emerged to see his shadow, meaning winter will last another six weeks. German tradition holds that if a hibernating animal sees its shadow on February 2, winter will last another six weeks. If no shadow is seen, legend says spring will come early.

How did our little rodent friend (yes, groundhogs are classified as rodents) get his name? From Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, the site of the annual Groundhog event. There are a few other "predictors" around the country, but they all pale in comparison to Phil's ability to predict the remainder of winter. And for the record, Phil sees his shadow about 9 out of 10 times.

But enough on the rodent. Is there any significance of an alligator emerging from a canal to sun itself in South Florida on February 2? Send your creative thoughts to the blog for posting.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Tickets Selling Like Hotcakes for Local "Cuckoo" Production

(Maintenance) Chief Rick Amezquita

Tickets sales for a local production of "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" are selling like hotcakes!

Miami Maintenance Manager Rick Amezquita is cast in a leading role and will make his acting debut opening night, Friday, February 5. He will play "Chief," a character in a mental hospital since the end of World War II. The play is based on Ken Kesey's original novel about a struggle for personal freedom under the most dire of circumstances. A free-thinking loner stuck in a mental hospital leads a rebellion of patients against a controlling nurse who will resort to anything to stamp out independent thought and action among her patients.

Performance dates are February 5, 6, 12, and 13 at 8 pm; February 6, 7, 13, and 14 at 2 pm at the Davie Pine Island Multi-Purpose Center, 3801 S Pine Island Road in Davie. Tickets are $12 at the door, $10 in advance, $8 each for groups of 10 or more. Contact Jill Cuba at 954-797-1153 between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm or Fern Katz at 954-473-0372 between 9:00 am and 8:00 pm ... or E-Mail

It's "Lights, Camera, Action!" for Zeigler and "Party Nights TV" Production

Safety Specialist John Zeigler has a second career in television production on the weekend. He's a co-producer of a TV Show called "Party Nights TV" on the ION network. Last Saturday's broadcast featured a prayer and footage of earthquake victims in Haiti, as well as footage of Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, Fergi of the Black Eyed Peas, Robin Givings, and Venus Williams. Future broadcasts will feature other artists and coverage of various South Florida events, including the Super Bowl and Jazz in the Gardens.

"Party Nights TV" is broadcast at 2 pm every other Saturday ... Check your local listing for the ION Network channel in your neighborhood and tune in to the next show on Saturday, February 13.

Hollywood Residents Earn Recycling Rewards

RecycleBank is now offering its Rewards-for-Recycling Program to Hollywood residents.

RecycleBank encourages people to recycle by rewarding households with points for their efforts. These points are redeemable at local and national retailers, restaurants, grocers, and more.

Nearly 32,000 Hollywood households received new 95 gallon recycling carts outfitted with special tags that connect the address with individual RecycleBank accounts. Recycling trucks read the identification tags during recycling pick up and record the weight of recyclables. Weight of collections is converted into points that can be used to "shop" for rewards from hundreds of businesses in more than 20 categories.

After activating their RecycleBank accounts, Hollywood residents can log on to or call 888-727-2978 to redeem rewards from local reward partners such as Publix, Winn-Dixie, Sage Oyster Bar, Ocean Alley, Café Italia, SAS Martini Lounge, Little Bakery, Yoga One Yoga Studio, Dandee Donuts, Vocelli Pizza and many more.

Residents also may choose from a host of national partners such as Coca-Cola, Kraft Foods, Seventh Generation, Burt´s Bees, CVS Pharmacy, The Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, and more.

There also is an option to donate points to local school environmental programs through the RecycleBank Green Schools Program. Similar to frequent flier programs, the more a family recycles, the more RecycleBank points each household earns.

Contact Waste & Recycling News Reporter Amanda Smith-Teutsch at 330-865-6166 or

Thanks to Carroll Burgess, CHMM, Compliance/Risk Mitigation Specialist, Environmental Policy & Programs, US Postal Service, for submitting this information.