(Brattleboro, Vt.)  Legal Secretary Jody S. Kaiser of Hinsdale, N.H. has been named the winner of the coveted Diane Lynch Distinguished Service Award at the northern New England law firm Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC.

The award was presented at the firm’s annual holiday celebration at the Hanover Inn on Dec. 1.

“Anyone who has had the pleasure of working with you knows of your commitment to excellence,” reads a citation presented to Kaiser at the event. “You give 200 percent and go above and beyond every day. You are the ultimate team player for DRM and you are a pleasure to work with.”

Kaiser joined DRM in 2009 and has worked in both the Brattleboro and Lebanon offices as a receptionist, office clerk and legal secretary. In her most recent assignment, she applies comprehensive skills as a legal secretary supporting four attorneys working in labor and employment law. Her work includes helping to prepare for arbitrations, negotiations, mediations, defense and prosecution of unfair labor practice charges, equal employment matters and other issues in the field of labor and employment law.

Kaiser studied at Michigan Technological University and Michigan State University and earned the non-bar juris doctor at California Southern University in 2008. In a wide-ranging career spanning several states she has also been a teacher, school bus driver and head of the K-3 day program of a boarding school, a master fabric craftsman creating marine canvas products, and a chef, receptionist and marketing assistant for a 28-room country inn.

Established in 2000 to honor the memory of Lynch, a long time and highly valued employee, the award is given each year to a former or current employee who has demonstrated loyalty, dedication, energy, drive, selflessness, good nature, humor and commitment. Lynch joined the firm in 1974 as a legal secretary, and worked for more than 20 years in the firm’s St. Johnsbury office. She was named office manager in 1976 and personnel and administrative manager in 1983. In that position, she managed employment services for a law firm that grew from 15 employees working in one office in 1974 to more than 130 employees in five offices when she left the firm due to illness.