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Excellence in Practice Awards 2015


The Champion Award recognizes a Lead Defense Travel Administrator (LDTA) whose wisdom, guidance, and commitment to their Organization DTAs (ODTAs) has made a fundamental and long-term positive impact on their travel program.
This year’s recipient is Ms. D. Zabava for her support to the United States Army North (USANORTH) - Fifth Army.
As the LDTA of USANORTH - Fifth Army, Ms. Zabava assisted over 500 travelers, 50 Authorizing Officials, and 20 ODTAs in both a DoD civilian employee and a U.S. Army reservist capacity.  In both roles, Ms. Zabava was applauded for her eye to efficiencies, her teaching ability, and her positive, can-do attitude.

Ms. Zabava actively monitored her organization’s travel to identify trends that required corrective action.  In one notable example, she noticed that travelers going to the same country were committing the same types of errors, so she provided hands-on training to travelers and AOs to prevent similar mistakes.  In another situation, when Ms. Zabava noticed that her organization’s ODTAs spent a considerable length of time to create new lines of accounting for the new fiscal year, she developed a more-streamlined process that saved time and resulted in greater interface accuracy between DTS and GFEBS.

Ms. Zabava has been described as someone who “never passed up a teaching moment,” which she displayed through her mentoring and teaching to ODTAs, AOs, and travelers alike.  She provided her ODTAs with recurring in-person and virtual training to address contemporary organizational travel trends and regulatory changes.  Her training plan worked - USANORTH - Fifth Army exceeded its audit readiness goals due to her efforts.  Furthermore, Ms. Zabava’s positive attitude and ambition motivated USANORTH - Fifth Army’s ODTAs to identify efficiencies within their area of purview, improve internal communication, and expand travel training in the organization.

Ms. Zabavas’s efforts to improve USANORTH - Fifth Army’s travel program - and the personnel that support it - truly demonstrate that she encompasses the essence of a champion.

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