TOPEKA – Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland announced Nadira Hazim-Patrick and Victor Follis have been named as the Department of Commerce’s Employees of the Year for 2021.
“Nadira works vigorously to promote and manage the Department of Commerce incentive programs, and her efforts have contributed to our record breaking economic development success,” said Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland. “She goes above and beyond to provide exemplary leadership to her colleagues and outstanding service to the people and businesses of Kansas. Nadira’s consistent commitment to excellence and accountability make her extraordinarily deserving of this recognition.”
Hazim-Patrick, Finance Programs Administration Manager, has been with Commerce for 22 years and with the State of Kansas since 1992. Nadira and her team work closely with the Business Development teams to ensure companies get the funding they need in order to grow in Kansas. She strives to achieve the best possible outcomes for projects under her management and credits her success to the amazing people and teams she is able to work with on a daily basis.
“I want to thank Governor Kelly and Lt. Governor Toland for this award and acknowledge them for their leadership.” said Nadira Hazim-Patrick. “I am honored to work with some amazing and talented people every day. I am extremely proud to represent the Department of Commerce and committed to the work we do for the State and citizens of Kansas.”
Victor Follis, Intensive Service Coordinator, works at the Wichita Veterans Affairs (VA) Dole Center and has been with Commerce for 3 years. He engages with veterans that are not able to continue with their employment path due to a disability. The VA retrains veterans into a field that will accommodate their disability. Once veterans are ready to re-enter the workforce, Follis is the liaison that screens and assigns veterans to the appropriate case manager to ensure that their employment needs are met.
“Having talented employees at Commerce is how we are able to achieve amazing results over the past several years,” said Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland. “Victor exemplifies what it means to be committed to serving the people of Kansas, especially veterans, through his passion, compassion and enthusiasm to help those in need of employment. I congratulate Victor on being named 2021 Employee of the Year.”
“I’m truly honored and blessed to have been selected to receive the Employee of the Year recognition,” Victor Follis said. “I can think of no better job than working with veterans developing their skillset to find lasting employment opportunities within the sunflower state. I’d like to thank Governor Kelly and Lt. Governor Toland for their leadership supporting the Veteran population of this great state.”
About the Kansas Department of Commerce
As the state’s lead economic development agency, the Kansas Department of Commerce strives to empower individuals, businesses and communities to achieve prosperity in Kansas. Commerce accomplishes its mission by developing relationships with corporations, site location consultants and stakeholders in Kansas, the nation and world. Our strong partnerships allow us to help create an environment for existing Kansas businesses to grow and foster an innovative, competitive landscape for new businesses. Through Commerce’s project successes, Kansas in 2021 was awarded Site Selection Magazine’s Governor’s Cup award, Area Development Magazine’s Gold Shovel award for two years in a row and was named Site Selection Magazine’s Best Business Climate in the West North Central region of the United States. Find the Department’s strategic plan for economic growth here: Kansas Framework for Growth.