PennDOT honors area Star of Excellence recipients

From staff reports

Two PennDOT employees from both District 1 and District 10 were honored Tuesday at a ceremony in Harrisburg as they received the department’s Star of Excellence awards for their “outstanding performance.”

PennDOT secretary Mike Carroll and other department executives recognized Vincent Mazzocchi and Benjamin Vincent from District 1, which includes Venango, Crawford, Forest, Erie, Mercer and Warren counties; and Matthew Burkett and Carla Studebaker from District 10, which includes Clarion, Armstrong, Butler, Indiana and Jefferson counties.

A total of 31 workers statewide received The Star of Excellence Award, which is PennDOT’s highest recognition.

District 1 executive Brian McNulty said Mazzocchi and Vincent “are great examples of the dedication, hard work and innovation that define our team in northwest Pennsylvania.”

Mazzocchi serves as a civil engineer manager in the information and data management unit. In his current role, he has assisted subject matter experts with crafting submissions and obtaining transportation productivity improvement fund awards for innovative projects.

Under his guidance, PennDOT’s northwest region has enhanced usage of digital tools such as SharePoint and Power BI to increase timeliness, accuracy and transparency, and eliminated old processes that hindered information sharing, McNulty said.

Mazzocchi lives in Clarion County and is an active member of the Knights of Columbus.

Vincent was honored for his work as the northwest region’s assistant district maintenance manager, at which time he managed the district’s five-year paving plans for each of the region’s six counties.

In that position, Vincent managed 15 to 25 roadway contracts annually and led his team with the philosophy of maintaining quality standards and keeping costs low, McNulty said.

Vincent, who was recently promoted to assistant district bridge engineer for design, lives in Venango County with his wife, Andrea, and their two young children.

In District 10, district executive Brian Allen said Burkett and Studebaker “are two of our incredible employees. Their dedication and expertise in their fields help us keep our projects and roadways safe and efficient.”

Burkett, of Brookville, started his career at PennDOT in 2003 as a transportation construction inspector and worked his way up through the department in many roles. He has been the assistant district executive — maintenance since 2020.

He has excelled in all his positions, and because of his diverse background, he has become a key team member in the district, a statewide expert, and is helping provide strategic direction with PennDOT maintenance initiatives, Allen said.

Studebaker, of Punxsutawney, is the district utility administrator.

The Star of Excellence Awards are presented annually to employees who represent the department’s values of service, performance and integrity, PennDOT said. The recipients represent a variety of organizational positions.