By Lauren Godding
The annual MATA Workers Compensation Award Ceremony was held April 4th at the Newton Marriott. Attendance included approximately 300 attorneys, DIA members, and their families coming together to recognize excellent service within the workers’ compensation court system. Award winners included two DIA members, Susan Gianatassio and Judge Yvonne Vieira. Attorney Tom O’Reilly of Curtin, Murphy, & O’Reilly PC, received the James Garretson Advocacy Award, given to an attorney who practices in workers’ compensation each year.
Susan Gianatassio was awarded the DIA Distinguished Service Award for her dedicated work at the DIA, presented to the DIA employee that exemplifies superior customer service to all constituents. She currently works in the Conciliation Office, and has been with the Department of Industrial Accidents for 25 years. “I’m blessed with a beautiful family, and I’m fortunate and privileged to work with the people I work with,” she said. “It was an honor to be recognized for something I truly love to do.”
Susan said she was touched and humbled by the wonderful ceremony, and felt “extreme gratitude and appreciation for the honor.” When asked about her favorite part of working at the DIA, Susan confidently and without hesitation said it is being able to help. She also expressed special thanks to Attorney Sheila Carey.
Judge Yvonne Vieira received the Emily J. Novick Award for Judicial Excellence, named for the Honorable Emily J. Novick, awarded to an administrative judge each year. “When I was told that I was receiving this award I was both shocked and humbled. I have worked with so many people here that have given generously of their time to mentor me,” Judge Vieira said. “People who have assisted in projects and gone above and beyond what was required.”
Starting out as an Administrative Assistant, Judge Vieira held many different positions through her 38 years with the DIA; “I have dedicated my work life to the Commonwealth/DIA and as a result I have been blessed with all the wonderful people who have come into my life. I have truly enjoyed each and every position I held and have come to understand that how working together has made the DIA such a success in the Workers’ Compensation world.”
Attorney Sean Flaherty served as MATA Workers Comp co-chair for many years With Attorney Jud Pierce, who is now working in the national workers’ compensation field. “It was a wonderful event, headed off with a great class of awardees,” he said. “It’s always great to have members of the DIA and attorneys on both sides of the aisle in such a comradely and social atmosphere.”