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2024 Notary of the Year: Debbie Best-Schneidmill

Debbie Best-Schneidmill with the Notary of the Year trophy

Four decades ago, Debbie Best-Schneidmill became a Notary for the small law office where she worked. Today, she is a certified Notary Signing Agent, a Remote Online Notary and holds dual commissions in Washington D.C and Maryland. Debbie has worked closely with Notary officials to bolster support for Notaries and improve official training and educational materials for Notaries Public. Debbie also serves as a mentor and educator to many of her colleagues.

For Debbie’s dedicated efforts to improve and strengthen Notary education, training, policies and procedures, the NNA is honored to name her as the 2024 Notary of the Year. Her accomplishments will be celebrated at the NNA Conference this May.  

Debbie’s work to improve Notary education

When Debbie attended her first NNA conference in 2014, she had been a Notary in Washington D.C. since 1984 and had held her Notary commission in Maryland for over twenty years. It was at the conference she realized that some states provided substantial training and guidance, but many others did not. It was that knowledge that first inspired Debbie to speak with the Manager of Training and Development for her law firm’s support staff to establish and implement ongoing training for their Notary-commissioned employees.

Debbie was designated as the “Notary Expert” for her firm. She developed a multi-state audiovisual Notary education program, was available to answer questions for other Notaries on staff, and tracked commission information to ensure everyone’s commissions were renewed on time and correctly. But she didn’t stop there.

Debbie saw that Notaries outside her firm also needed more resources and training to be successful and competent. In 2016, Debbie heard that Judi Gold, Director of the Office of Notary Commissions and Authentications in Washington D.C., was scheduled to speak at an event in Maryland. Debbie reached out to volunteer her assistance with updating Notary educational materials and guidelines. Since then, Debbie and Ms. Gold have collaborated to improve the look, ease of comprehension, and thoroughness of the District of Columbia’s Notary Public Handbook. Being an experienced legal document proofreader, Debbie pointed out areas where Notary guidelines could be reworded to provide more clarity.

When Debbie was asked by a friend why she would put in this level of effort without compensation, Debbie’s response was “I enjoy it, and I’m playing a vital role in the process.”

The more Debbie learned about the nuances of being a Notary, the more she wanted to learn. Debbie is also a certified Notary Signing Agent and Remote Online Notary. Since retiring from her law firm in 2021, Debbie continues to offer Notarial services and networks with other Notaries to ensure the need for Notary services is always met in her community. She has also been an advisor, educator and speaker at Notary seminars across the District of Columbia and Maryland.

Debbie’s community and charity work

Community service is a common trait among those selected as Notary of the Year, and Debbie Best-Schneidmill continues that tradition. For 10 years, Debbie volunteered as a Reading Buddy to third graders in the D.C. public school system. Studies into education and future success have shown that children who are not reading at grade level by the time they reach fourth grade are more likely to struggle with academic achievements and may be less likely to graduate high school on time. Debbie loved seeing children realize the fun of reading.

While she no longer regularly visits classrooms, she always carries with her a few children’s books. If presented with the opportunity, she gladly will gift a child she meets with a book to take home with them. Children are excited to receive the gift, and she continues to foster the love of reading.

Debbie has also been an IRS tax preparer and served as treasurer of her church. Throughout her career, she learned that she loves meeting people, loves making personal connections, and has a desire to share information. Though she describes herself as quiet, she says she has found a new voice through community and Notary service. “Talking to other Notaries is engaging. You hear new ideas. Always something new. I never feel like I’ve heard everything,” she said.

Debbie’s desire to learn, serve others and willingness to teach, is a standard every Notary can respect and aspire to.

The Notary of the Year is selected annually for outstanding service, contributions to the Notary Public office and community service. If you would like to nominate someone as a candidate for the 2025 Notary of the Year, please complete and submit our online NOTY nomination form.

31 Comments

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Shelly Gause

27 Mar 2024

Congratulations to DBest 😊. Seriously though, I am so proud of my friend for obtaining this honor. Congratulations Debbie! I’ll continue to sit at your feet and learn. 🎊👏🏾🎊👏🏾

Alicia T. Robinson

27 Mar 2024

Congratulations!! You are “D-BEST” and you deserve it!! I am so happy and proud of you!! 👏🏽👏🏽

Cynthia y

30 Mar 2024

Congratulations! What an honor!

Debbie Van Kirk

30 Mar 2024

Congratulations, Debbie. A well deserved recognition for you. You have always gone above and beyond to educate and help others. It was a pleasure to be your co-worker!

Sadie Crutcher

31 Mar 2024

Congratulations!!!! I am so proud of you!!! God Bless you! ❤️

Carolyn Brisco

03 Apr 2024

Congratulations!!!

Beatrice Johnson

04 Apr 2024

Congratulations 🎉🍾 From what I read, you’re a Rock ⭐️ Sincerely, BJ Johnson

Geraldine Pierre-Fleurimond

04 Apr 2024

Congratulations!! A job well done!! Welcome to the club! NOTY 2003!

Debbie

08 Apr 2024

Congratulations! D-Best from Chicago… Way to go😊 I so proud of you.🎉🎊🎁🍾

Debbie B from That Girl Notary

08 Apr 2024

Congratulations!!🎈🎉 D-Best so proud of you 😊

Christina Hough

08 Apr 2024

Congratulations from one Notary of the Year (2023) to another! It's great to see that notaries have a shining example and mentor in the Maryland area and beyond!

Kathleen Cheney

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations Debbie! You are an inspiration to all those who come in contact with you.

Stacia Dashiell

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations. Job well done.

Angela P. Williams

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations!

Sharron SmithDixon

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations ‼️ well deserved 😊can you please help me to get recognition, I’ve had my certification/license for sometime now and I’ve yet to have any work. Signed up with a few agencies. Now that has expired. I’m totally at a loss on how to get started. PLEASE HELP!!

Fwebb

15 Apr 2024

CONGRATULATIONS

SHERYL L CALDWELL, Galveston Texas

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations enjoy being all that to all us regular ole Notaries!!!🙂

Jamice Fowler

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations 🎊 👏. You are a inspiration 😊

Ava Grigg

15 Apr 2024

This is awesome. Thanks for all the work you are doing in the DMV area.

Gigi Andueza

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations Debbie! You are the best and so deserving of this award. I cannot express my gratitude for your amazing work and your professionalism. You are a STAR! ✨⭐️

Sharon Fulks

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations 🎊 That is Wonderful Very Inspiring

Mary Ralls

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations for your outstanding work.

Mary Ralls

15 Apr 2024

Congratulations for your outstanding work.

Cathy Betts-Frazier

16 Apr 2024

Congrats. Continued education was my goal for fellow notaries in my state. Brown bag lunches monthly to discuss problems for fellow county employees. Very happy for you Retired now, but I attended 25 national conferences for my continued education in my 28 years. NOTY. Honoree 2005

Lea Thompson

16 Apr 2024

Congratulations Debbie, Your credentials, experience, and community work speak volumes. Best Regards

Al Johnson

17 Apr 2024

Wow, what an inspiring piece. D-Best is yet to come. Always learning and sharing. Congratulations to you and continued success.

Leisa

19 Apr 2024

Congrats Debbie! You always give first-class, professional service that sets you apart. A very deserving award.

Catia D'Imperio

19 Apr 2024

I truly can't think of anyone who is more deserving for this award - Debbie truly shows the epitome of excellence with her notary skills, her contribution to her community and charity work! Congratulations Debbie!!! Hmmm, ever think of running for office? You would have my vote. :)

cepree@netzero.net

19 Apr 2024

Congratulations on your accomplishments!

Sara Hay

20 Apr 2024

Congrats! Well deserved!

Joyce Darby

22 Apr 2024

Congratulations!!! 🎉 Thanks for all you do!!

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