2022 WA APCO-NENA Award Winners
Congratulations to our 2022 award winners!
Exemplary Handling of a Critical Incident – Sheila Ring
No one chooses the incidents they are a part of when they answer the phone or respond to radio traffic from first responders. However, they do choose how they show up to the call. Sheila did just that; she showed up on May 15th, 2022, when a call was received by Kitsap 911 advising of an assault in progress involving over 200 individuals. Sheila captured details, provided updated information, and repeated the necessary information. Sheila made quick notifications to local agencies. At one point, Kitsap 911 received a call from the Regional Dispatch Center advising that a subject, possibly related to this fight, was being detained at the Naval gate for Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. Shots were fired while this call was taking place, and a plethora of information came into the Kitsap 911 center.
During this event, the dispatcher needed to be on their “A” game. Fortunately for Kitsap 911 and their responders, Sheila was on her “A” game. This clearly came across throughout this event. Due to Sheila’s vigilance in obtaining and providing vital information, there was a quick response with no injuries, and suspects were quickly identified.
Team of the Year – TCOMM 911
There is no “i” in Team, but there were lots of eyes providing resources on October 16th, 2022, out of TCOMM 911 Center when a fire dispatcher who was helping answer overflow calls picked up the 911 line to hear a muffled female voice who sounded like she was yelling a distance from the phone mouthpiece which ultimately lead to the coordination of resources and successful outcome of an abduction.
Congratulate TCOMM’s staff who was working:
• Shelly Moody, • Angela Lohrengel, • Lorie Manix, • Erin Jackson, • Laurie Shefler, • Jenny Kempke,
• Cassie Hall, • Christina Chandler, • Fritz Riddle, • Kelsey Dolle, • Jamie Lewis, • Dan Johnson,
• Shayla Murphy, • Sharon Cox, • Morgan Rodgers, • Becki Mullen, • Jenn Rodgers, • Heather Rooks,
• Andrea Jansen, • Kristen Stewart
Technician of the Year – John Heglin
John was nominated by three co-workers at SREC 911. None of which knew the other was submitting his name for all his service. John has provided 26 years of his life to public safety and is committed to SREC and the service its folks provide their community.
A quote from one of John’s nominations said this, “John continually demonstrates his expertise and knowledge as he manages, maintains, and troubleshoots our emergency phone system. What’s more, John invests in relationships at SREC. He does not do this intentionally to make his job easier or to get things done more efficiently, even though those things can be unintentional outcomes. He truly cares about people and understands the importance of his role in public safety. As he’s built his career with us, he has become a jack of all trades and has taught himself so much more than is expected of him that he is literally the go-to person for many IT-related issues—being requested by name more than anyone else on the team.”
Telecommunicator of the Year, Sustained Performance – Kristen Stewart
Kristen has worked for Thurston County 911 (TCOMM) for 16 years. She is described as bright, positive, kind, and an asset to the workforce. Kristen exudes compassion, concern, and assurance that is authentic and genuine. She shows up this way to the callers, the staff she works around, and the users she interacts with. Kristen shows up this way each and every shift, no matter what her life outside of TCOMM brings or the changing demands of the call center.
Kristen is the telecommunicator we wish we had more of – the kind that shows her tenure through staff mentorship, positivity, and promotion of a healthy workplace. She is flexible, relational, and resourceful.
Kristen has an extensive bucket of quality and good that she draws from; however, it was best captured in her nomination, stating, “Public speaker Dr. Dale Henry encourages people to avoid saying “That’s not my job” as an excuse for not engaging a potentially difficult situation and absolving yourself of all personal responsibility. Kristen is one of our favorite examples of a person who genuinely wants to serve the greater good, whether that’s a citizen, her coworkers, our user agencies, or TCOMM as a whole. She considers everything as fair game for her “job” and doesn’t shy away from undesirable tasks in favor of excitement and glory. She seeks to improve every situation and focuses on what she can do at this moment to effect a positive change. Every center needs 10 or 20 Kristen Stewarts! We are most fortunate to have her as part of our team.”
Trainer of the Year – Amy Sullivan
Amy comes from Spokane Regional Emergency Communications (aka SREC or SHREK for those of us that struggle without the “H”) where she works as a 911 Communications Training Officer.
Amy is described as instrumental in assisting SREC in adapting and overcoming the difficulties that the 911 industry sees as a whole. Amy has over two decades working in 911 and inspires new recruits to love the work and provides an insight into the reward that the 911 public safety career can be.
Her nomination stated, “Amy is purely the definition of excellence for Trainers. She is knowledgeable, approachable, likable, and instrumental to our agency’s success. Amy is selfless, constantly putting the needs of others ahead of her own needs. She works to improve the performance of our trainees, to improve the skillset of her peer CTOs, and to improve the Training Program itself. As our State navigates the waters to allow those in our profession to be recognized as true First Responders, others can look to Amy to see how she embodies the service to others mentality that truly defines all First Responders.” which embodies the role of a well-rounded, sought after telecommunicator and trainer.
Supervisor of the Year
Tannis carries 31 years of public safety experience under a headset providing direct support to Bothell Police staff, management, users, and citizens. She has been highlighted for her abilities and tireless efforts around training, scheduling, and engaging her creativity to make things better and more efficient for Bothell Police Department.
Tannis has self-accountability and holds staff to high standards using humor, knowledge, skill, and rapport to work alongside Bothell Police employees. She demonstrates commitment, professionalism, and servitude in her daily tasking. She is described as energetic, enthusiastic, and resourceful. You can see by her warm smile, Tannis has maintained a healthy attitude and approach to the work that public safety brings.