Cintas 2022 COY

The winner of the 2022 Cintas Custodian of the Year contest is Lydell Henderson from Presidential Park Elementary School in Middletown, New York. 

After nearly 90,000 votes were cast, Cintas Corporation confirmed Lydell Henderson is this year’s contest winner. Mr. Henderson was honored by over 1,500 students and staff in a surprise ceremony at the school and will receive a $10,000 cash prize from Cintas. 

“This contest showcases the unique stories of hardworking custodians throughout the country who deserve recognition for their dedication to their profession,” said Christiny Betsch, Marketing Manager, Cintas. “The community at Presidential Park Elementary School clearly thinks the world of Mr. Henderson, and we’re honored to recognize Mr. Henderson for his achievements.” 

School custodians often go above and beyond their regular tasks, including the time Mr. Henderson helped to prevent a student from choking. Without hesitation, he stepped up and performed the Heimlich Maneuver, which may have saved the student’s life. On top of this heroic act, he has been an asset at his school district for the last 34 years with unmatched professionalism. His district and community rallied around him throughout the voting process, earning him roughly 30 percent of the contest’s total votes.  

“Custodians play a vital role in schools across the U.S. in helping to keep students, faculty and staff healthy and safe,” says John Barrett, executive director, ISSA. “At ISSA, we’re dedicated to providing custodians and other cleaning professionals certification programs to make their jobs easier and more efficient. We’re excited to again offer our training services this year to contest winners and finalists.” 

In addition to the $10,000 cash prize from Cintas, the school will receive $5,000 in products and services from Cintas and Rubbermaid Commercial Products, along with a comprehensive training and development package from ISSA, The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association, valued at $30,000. Mr. Henderson will also receive enrollment in the GBAC Fundamentals Online Course that teaches cleaning professionals to prepare for, respond to and recover from biorisks in all types of facilities, from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), a Division of ISSA.  

Each of the remaining nine finalists will receive a cash prize of $1,000 from Cintas and free tuition to one ISSA Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) training event, valued at $1,500. 

“This is an exciting moment for Mr. Henderson, and we’re proud to take part in recognizing his achievement as the nation’s best custodian,” shares Robert Posthauer, sr. vice president Sales and Marketing, Rubbermaid Commercial Products.

Plenty of awards are going around honoring the best frontline employees in the cleaning industry! The winner of Tennant Company's national Custodians Are Key competition was also recently announced. Read more on that here