NASC Announces 2024 Award Recipients
Section: NASC

Several NASC members and former members were honored with awards at the recent 2024 NASC Annual Conference, held in Lexington, Kentucky, on March 13-15. Award recipients were selected by NASC President and Administrator of Montana’s State Financial Services Division Cheryl Grey. Awards were presented during a ceremony held on the evening of Wednesday, March 13.


Louis L. Goldstein Leadership Award

Vern Larson was selected as the recipient of the Louis. L. Goldstein Leadership Award. This is NASC’s most prestigious award, named for a legend in the state government finance community, former Comptroller of Maryland Louis L. Goldstein.

Vern Larson served as the elected comptroller of South Dakota from 1979 through 2003 and as the elected state treasurer of South Dakota from 2003 through 2011. He is a past president of NASC as well as the NASC’s parent organization, the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers. He has received numerous industry awards over the years. During his time with NASC and NASACT he helped navigate numerous industry challenges including issues related to the financial crisis in 2008.


Ed Ross Distinguished Service Award

Stacy Neal was selected to receive the Ed Ross Distinguished Service Award. This is NASC’s award to recognize exceptional service during a career. It was renamed last year to be the “Ed Ross” Distinguished Service Award in honor of longtime Kentucky State Controller Edgar Ross, who retired in November of 2022.

Stacy Neal is Missouri’s director of accounting. She is a past president of NASC, where she addressed numerous industry and association challenges including serving during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, where she helped pivot NASC’s activities to a virtual format and spent a notable amount of time and energy helping NASC examine subsequent issues and legislation related to pandemic recovery funding. She is also a champion for NASC’s member benchmark data, which is compiled into a publication called State Comptrollers: Technical Activities and Functions, having served as chair of the committee that reviews and manages the publication for several years.


President’s Award

Doug Cotnoir, state controller of Maine, received NASC President’s Award to recognize his leadership on issues related to managing COVID relief funding and his valuable and ongoing contributions to efforts by states to address the American Rescue Plan Act. Additionally, he was selected in recognition of his service in 2022-23 as president of the association.

Special Recognition Award

Jennifer Pacheco, audit, risk and compliance services director in the North Carolina Office of the State Controller, received a Special Recognition Award. The award recognizes her service as co-chair of the NASC Human Resources Information Sharing group since its inception in January 2020 and her willingness to co-chair the new NASC Internal Audit Information Sharing Group started in 2023.