HOUSTON – Dec. 10, 2020 – The Spring ISD Procurement Services Department has been named among the winners of the 25th Annual Achievement of Excellence in Procurement (AEP) for 2020 from the National Procurement Institute, Inc. The AEP Award recognizes public and nonprofit agencies that demonstrate a commitment to procurement excellence. The 2020 award marks Spring ISD’s 11th consecutive AEP win, a fact noted during a special presentation at the district’s December board meeting earlier this week.
“The Spring ISD Procurement team’s record of winning this award annually for more than a decade clearly shows how they stand committed to continuous growth,” said Chief of Communications and Innovation Tiffany Dunne-Oldfield during the presentation. “It also shows how they exemplify the district’s core values – striving for excellence in all they do, building trust through integrity, and winning as a team.”
This year, Spring ISD was one of only 46 recipients in Texas and one of only 22 school districts across all of the U.S. and Canada to receive the distinction. The award criteria evolve each year as best practices in public procurement operations change, incorporating updated requirements on strategic planning and technology, e-procurement and purchasing cooperatives.
Recognizing procurement organizations that embrace traits such as innovation, professionalism, productivity, and leadership, the AEP program encourages the development of excellence as well as continued organizational improvement to earn the award annually. According to Spring ISD Executive Director of Procurement Phillip Ellison, that push toward continuous improvement is a large part of what motivates the district to pursue the award each year.
“You know, some people might say that receiving it one year is good enough, but what this really shows is consistency, and what every public procurement organization should show is consistency,” Ellison said. “It shows that we are consistently striving to stay on top of the latest trends in public procurement in order to ensure value for the district and for our local taxpayers.”
The AEP award is recognized as an accepted standard of best practices by public purchasing associations across North America, keeping Spring ISD on the front edge not just of organizations across Texas, but throughout the U.S. and in Canada as well. As mentioned during the board presentation, the commitment to continued excellence in procurement has benefitted the district during this year’s COVID-19 pandemic.
“This year has been a challenge for departments across our district, and Procurement is no exception,” Dunne-Oldfield said during the meeting. “Phillip and his team had to adapt not only to the ‘new normal’ of operating during a pandemic, but also to meeting the unique procurement needs during this pandemic.”
Ellison said he was grateful to the district and to Chief Financial Officer Ann Westbrooks for continuing to see the value in the AEP award and encouraging the Procurement Department to pursue it, even in the midst of the challenges of this year. He also offered a special shout-out to his team for their part in making the award possible.
“It’s a testament to our team, to the procurement team, that they see the value in it,” Ellison said, “that they see the value that it brings to the district and to the Financial Services organization, that they stay on top of what our requirements are and making sure we fulfill them.”