Date of Award



© 2021 David A. Dietz

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Jacqueline Lookabaugh

Second Advisor

Catherine Stieg

Third Advisor

Shanita Williams


The purpose of this qualitative instrumental study was to clarify the purpose of Agency ABC’s Recognition Council, while identifying opportunities for staff recognition and appreciation to be optimized within Agency ABC to assist in creating and sustaining employee engagement. This purpose is in direct correlation to the study’s problem, to fill in research gaps due to a lack of existing documentation, best practices and research regarding federal recognition programs. Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory was the conceptual framework that the researcher applied to this study. The researcher performed semi-structured, one-on-one interviews with five former members of Agency ABC’s Recognition Council members. Interview questions were asked to investigate member perception regarding role, experiences and expectation in creating and sustaining employee engagement, as well as how may staff recognition be optimized to sustain employee engagement. Seven themes and 22 subthemes emerged from the subsequent analysis, providing insight into the study’s research questions. The study’s results indicated that participants felt that greater executive leadership collaboration with the council was necessary to enhance the purpose and operations of the council, while improved timeliness and agreement upon defining key terms and their application concerning the awards process would improve the council’s authenticity. Findings from this study may be useful for senior executives within federal organizations, private sector organizations and federal employees.


Ed.D. Dissertation