9-1-1 Leaders Gather to Address Critical Public Safety Issues
Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Posted by: Chris Nussman
and Leaders Honored; Hundreds Participate in Charity 5K Event; Membership
day, America’s 9-1-1 call takers answer an estimated 600,000 calls for help,
with all requiring extraordinary attention and composure. To advance the cause
of better 9-1-1 service to the public, more than 2,000 people who lead, staff,
and support America’s 9-1-1 systems gathered in Indianapolis on June 11-16 for
the National Emergency Number Association’s (NENA) Annual
Conference & Expo. The
conference agenda focused on critical public safety issues including
text-to-9-1-1, location accuracy, and the ongoing transition to more powerful
digital and multimedia technologies.
one of the most exciting developments, NENA outgoing board president Christy
Williams announced that the organization’s membership has grown from about 7,000
to more than 11,000 since the introduction in 2014 of a new tier of membership
for front-line 9-1-1 call takers.
another front, the NG911 Now Coalition, comprised of national public safety
and industry leaders focused on the acceleration of Next Generation 9-1-1
(NG911) deployment, announced the creation of the "NG911 NOW Partners Program.”
The new program is designed to expand participation in the coalition and to
coalesce national, state, and local efforts around deploying NG911 by the end
first new partners of the coalition are the Internet2
Technology Evaluation Center
(ITEC) at Texas A&M University; the iCERT 911 Education Foundation (9EF); the National
States Geographic Information Council
(NSGIC); and the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA). For more information on the partners
program, click here.
of 9-1-1” Scholarships Awarded; 5K Race Off Conference
third-annual Friends of 9-1-1 "Run for 9-1-1” 5K run/walk kicked off the
conference at White River State Park, with more than 200 participants raising
funds for education, training, and wellness programs for 9-1-1 professionals.
of 9-1-1 also awarded five emergency call takers across the country with
Telecommunicator Continuing Education Scholarships. The recipients were
recognized for their dedication and outstanding performance as call takers.
This year’s recipients are:
Miller with Hendricks County, Indiana Communications Center – sponsored by
Aubrey of Roscommon County, Michigan Central Dispatch – sponsored by Hamra
Hoffman of the Georgetown/Scott County, Kentucky 9-1-1 Center - sponsored by Enbridge and Vector Pipeline;
Robbins with the Maine Department of Public Safety; and
Darger from the Colorado City Communications Center in Arizona.
Recognize Heroic and Dedicated Service
the conference, a number of individuals were recognized for their heroism and
dedication to 9-1-1 excellence. NENA presented its most prestigious award, the
William E. Stanton Lifetime Achievement Award, to Bob Cobb, ENP for his
decades-long commitment to serving NENA and his work to develop many of its
longest-standing programs and initiatives.
Presidential Award for Advocacy: Richard Ray from the City of Los Angeles
Department of Disability;
Presidential Award for Leadership: David Tuttle from the Peoria County, IL
Emergency Telephone System Board;
Telecommunicator of the Year: Samantha
Morris from the Paulding County, GA 9-1-1 Center; and
NENA Volunteer of the Year: Cheryl Benjamin from the New York State
Office of Information Technology Services.
Board Installed as Association Celebrates Milestones & Achievements
Also during the conference, NENA’s new slate
of board members took office. During her remarks to the membership, new board
president Renee Hardwick, ENP, of Horry County, SC, E9-1-1 shared her vision
for NENA’s future, highlighting her desire for the organization to tackle
technology, staffing, and funding issues.
Nine other executive board members were
sworn in at the Conference: First Vice President Rob McMullen, ENP; Second Vice
President Jamison Peevyhouse, ENP; Past President Christy Williams, ENP;
Northeastern Region Director Erin Elrod, ENP; North Central Region Director Bob
Currier, ENP; Southeastern Region Director Linda Draughn-Woloski, ENP; Western
Region Director Monica Million, ENP; Canadian Region Director Nancy Banks, ENP;
and Private Sector Director Ron Bloom, ENP.
conference featured keynote remarks from three inspiring speakers: leadership
expert Jake Wood; Boston Marathon
hero Natalie Stavas; and master
motivator Rick Lasky. These speakers
shared their personal stories of team building, managing chaotic situations,
and leadership under pressure, and they thanked the attendees for their hard
work and efforts that help save lives every day.
Goals Set for Friends of 9-1-1
of 9-1-1 is a NENA
initiative that provides scholarships for continuing education and wellness
programs for 9-1-1 professionals around the country.
the conference, outgoing president Christy Williams announced three new goals
for the initiative:
50 by 50: NENA aims to increase the number of Telecommunicator
Continuing Education Scholarships from 5 to 50 per year by 2018, the 50th
anniversary of the start of 9-1-1 service in America;
Wellness Seminar: NENA plans to develop a 9-1-1 Wellness
Seminar that will be free to 9-1-1 professionals who will become wellness
ambassadors in their centers; and
Online Training: NENA envisions a free
online training program that will instruct call takers on how to handle the
challenges associated with wireless 9-1-1 calls and new technologies.