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ASD’s Fall 2019 Extra Mile Award Winners

Dec 17, 2019

Here at ASD, we believe the longevity of our staff is truly a testament to the supportive company culture we have worked hard to foster. Though our company has grown exponentially over the past ten years, we have never lost that feeling of a small, family-owned company. We highly encourage staff interactions through collaborative projects, team building exercises, social activities, athletic competitions, volunteer events…you name it! This is because we want everyone at ASD to remain connected as we grow and evolve as a company.

In 2017, we introduced the ASD Extra Mile Award to give our employees the opportunity to commend one another for a job well done. Every month, several of our employees are selected based on nominations submitted by their co-workers and featured in ASD’s monthly newsletter, The Team ASD Times. This award fosters positivity in the office and helps us to spotlight employees who go above and beyond to do a good job at ASD. Since this award was first introduced, employees in each one of ASD’s different departments have been featured. Our staff appreciates being able to recognize their fellow colleagues and the different ways they contribute positively to ASD.

We will be regularly sharing “ASD Extra Mile Award” Winners on our blog. Below are the most recent recipients of this distinguished honor.

2017 Award Winners
2018 Award Winners
Winter 2019 Award Winners
Spring 2019 Award Winners
Summer 2019 Award Winners

ASD's Fall 2019 Extra Mile Award Winners

Margarita Santiago
Supervisor – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in May 2006

“Margarita is a truly caring person. She is willing to help anyone with questions or concerns about their job or call handling abilities.”…“In addition to her Supervisory role, Margarita has agreed to teach a class about the importance of compassion to ASD staff. She takes this role very seriously so newer staff understand the importance of what we do.”…“Margarita is always willing to help with any tasks asked of her, not afraid to get involved with any project, especially when she feels she can make a difference.”…“Margarita is patient and takes whatever time is needed to make sure the staff understands procedures. Her positive attitude and hard work ethic move her above expectations. Her dedication is truly outstanding!”

Zachary Ciabattoni
Training Specialist – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in February 2019

“Zac brings a tremendous amount of positivity to ASD. He is always upbeat and ready to help out, even just by posting goofy things on page 4 or sending nice messages to coworkers.”…“Zac is always striving to do his best and really exemplifies Team ASD spirit.”… “Zac was recently promoted to the position of Training Specialist. His positivity really lifts up the advanced trainees he's working with and establishes ASD's atmosphere of being welcoming and encouraging towards new coworkers in ops.”

Joshua Reynolds
Supervisor – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in October 2014

“Josh is very patient! He is never too busy to help a Call Specialist or to review something so you understand it.”…“Josh is truly a pleasure to work with and has a wonderful attitude.”…“Josh’s participation in so many ASD events show how enthusiastic he is about being a part of our team!”…“Josh is very thorough in any task asked of him to make sure information is correct and things are handled properly. His outward personality makes him approachable to staff, current and new.”…“Josh's well-deserved promotion to 1st shift Supervisor has certainly boosted his professionalism and desire to be as helpful as he can be.”

David Tillman
Assistant Supervisor – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in April 2018

“David is such an amazing employee. He always has a smile and a positive attitude.”…“Because of his wonderful traits, David has recently been promoted to Assistant Supervisor, a promotion that he truly deserved and earned. He is hard working and dedicated. He truly goes the extra mile.”…“David deserves this award because he is such a team player. His attitude and willingness to help out are what we need at ASD.”…“Anytime I ask David to come in on his assigned home day or to stay late to help assist in operations, he is more than excited and happy to do so.”…“Trainees rave about how David is so patient and understanding when explaining our system that they feel comfortable and confident when training by his side.”

Canda Saengkhed
Training Specialist – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in June 2016

“Canda is a dedicated employee with a great knowledge and understanding of how ASD works.”…“Canda does a wonderful job making callers and trainees feel at ease. She has a true knack for providing comfort to others.”…“Of her many amazing qualities, her kindness makes her a great trainer. Canda is very patient and takes the time to explain things in a way easiest to understand.”…“Canda is always up to any task asked of her and is always pleasant in doing it. She is a wonderful asset to our team!”

Rachel Taylor
Supervisor – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in March 2010

"Rachel is patient and caring. She takes the time explain any issue for our staff. She has a clear understanding of the system and takes the time needed to make sure clients understand things a well.”… “Rachel goes above and beyond to assist any Client in need. She is very thorough and will check every avenue possible to assist the Client.”… “Rachel is a superstar when it comes to giving our clients the highest level of customer service.”… “Rachel appreciates knowing as much as possible to communicate efficiently to staff and clients alike. She will often volunteer to assist with tasks or projects presented to us.”… “Rachel is always willing to help. She is very friendly, approachable and available to offer assistance whenever needed. She will check with every department to find a solution. We are lucky to have her on Team ASD!”

Brandi Merritt
Training Specialist – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in April 2019

“In her short time at ASD, Brandi has proven to be an exceptional employee and a great asset to ASD.”… “Brandi's knowledge of the system, call handling technique and display of kindness and compassion is a pleasure to see.”… “Brandi is always up to any challenge or project we ask of her and greets it with a positive manner…”Brandi's promotion to Training Specialist has given her the opportunity to shine in showing how well she does her job."

Gabriela Downey
Assistant Supervisor – ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in May 2016

“Gabriela is truly an inspiration for so many of us. She is such a good co-worker turned family.”…”Gabriela is always willing to help out anyone who needs it. She is passionate about helping others and brings out the best in others around her. She believes in people and encourages them to achieve their goals.”…”Gabriela is an excellent example of what you strive to be. With everything she does, she gives it her all”…”Gabriela is an incredible teammate who has become like family to me. I love her dearly.”

Dan Eckenrode
Assistant Supervisor– ASD’s Operations Team
Joined ASD in June 2017

“Dan really goes above and beyond to make people feel comfortable and to inspire confidence in others. He helps you understand what you are learning during each stage of training.”… “Dan is always willing to offer newer employees some extra help when we need it. He goes out of his way to make sure we have a firm grasp on what we are learning.”…”Dan is very helpful and thorough when training.”…“Dan is a wonderful teacher, a dedicated employee, and an awesome friend!”

Be sure to check back next season to read about our Winter 2020 Extra Mile Award Winners.


ASD's Spring 2019 Extra Mile Award Winners
ASD's Summer 2019 Extra Mile Award Winners
ASD’s Winter 2019 Extra Mile Award Winners
29 Reasons Why ASD Employees Find Their Work Rewarding


About The Author

Jess Farren (Fowler)

Jess Farren (Fowler) is a Public Relations Specialist and Staff Writer who has been a part of the ASD team since 2003. Jess manages ASD's company blog and has been published in several funeral trade magazines. She has written articles on a variety of subjects including communication, business planning, technology, marketing and funeral trends. You can contact Jess directly at

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