The House of Representatives presented Wednesday a resolution recognizing and commending Colleen Joyce for her “significant role and extraordinary contributions” as on-site adviser to the 2020 Census of the CNMI.
Rep. Joseph Lee Pan T. Guerrero (R-Saipan), chairman of the House’s Commerce and Tourism Committee who introduced the resolution, said that, as the Census adviser, Joyce worked on a team that developed procedures, manuals and training materials to support the 2020 Census of the CNMI and the other island territories.
Joyce has worked for the U.S. Census Bureau since 1999 and served as an on-site adviser to the CNMI Census operations since September 2019.
“Since the early stages of the 2020 CNMI Census, Joyce has played an intricate and critical role in its operation and has remained steadfast during the course to ensure its success,” Guerrero said in reading the resolution.
Joyce thanked Commerce Secretary Mark Rabauliman, the Legislature, Gov. Ralph DLG. Torres, Lt. Gov. Arnold Palacios, and the entire CNMI government, for giving their full support.
“This team is amazing. They jumped right in. We were rolling. They were rolling before I even got here last September,” she said.
Joyce said she remembers getting on a plane to go to Rota for the first Census job fair, even they had not opened an office on Saipan yet. “So that was great. Thank you again. I feel so honored and appreciated today. But I want you all to know that appreciation goes back to you 10-fold. And you’ve been great on a professional level and on a personal level just made me feel so welcome here in this community,” she told the Census officers and staff.
CNMI Census office manager Claudio K. Norita described Joyce as the “guiding light” for the Census office in the past year. Norita said that Joyce gave them clear direction of where they need to go, how to do it right, among others.
“So we very much appreciate her being here. We’re lucky that we have her here. And she’s been a good [adviser], a great [adviser] for all of us in the CNMI,” Norita said.
He said they completed their mission months in advance, which is a feat considering the COVID-19 pandemic situation.
Rabauliman thanked Joyce for all the professional advice. “But I share your sentiment, you know, it goes back 10-fold to the men and women that contributed to the 2020 Census,” Rabauliman said.