911 calltakers and emergency dispatchers honored for role in keeping communities safe

2019 OPA Award Recipients

In honor of National Public Safety Telecommunicators’ Week, more than 400 emergency dispatchers and 911 calltakers from across the region enjoyed an evening of great food and good company at this year’s Telecommunications Appreciation Celebration and Outstanding Performance Awards. The annual event, which recognizes the critical role telecommunicators play in keeping our communities safe, took place on April 12 at The Gallery in Kansas City’s Power & Light District. 

MARC’s Regional Public Safety Communications Program hosts the celebration to show appreciation for the men and women who answer dozens of emergency calls each day, often working long shifts and under high stress situations. 

At this year’s celebration, Outstanding Performance Awards were presented to the following individuals for their exemplary service to the public.

  • Everyday Hero Award: Elizabeth Hoon, Lee’s Summit, Missouri, Police Department; Gale Wash, Johnson County, Kansas, Emergency Communications Center; and Master Deputy Eric Wright, Johnson County, Kansas, Sheriff’s Office
  • Outstanding Individual Performance in a Critical Incident:  Elisabeth Riley, Sugar Creek, Missouri, Police Department and Tammi Poplar, Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department
  • Outstanding Team Performance in a Critical Incident: David Gibbs, Cruz Gillespie, Allison Ray, Kayla Sell – Miami County Sheriff’s Office and Robyn Brown, Rita Hye, Cynthia Jones, Laura Lewis, Christina McCool, Kristina McCullough, Taylor Mills, Erica Reyes, Gabriell Vega – Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department
  • Outstanding Training Performance: Kellene Lyman, Lee’s Summit, Missouri, Police Department and Master Deputy Bradley Webb, Johnson County, Kansas, Sheriff’s Office
  • Outstanding PSAP Leader: Christina Hays, Independence, Missouri, Police Department
  • Outstanding Multi-Agency Performance: American Medical Response; Independence Police Department; Kansas City, Missouri, Fire Department; Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department; LifeFlight Eagle; Sugar Creek Police Department
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Jeane Fracassa, Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department and Mindi Lobner, Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department

Serving 10 counties, the regional 911 system has nearly 700 dispatchers at 44 public safety answering points that handle approximately 4 million 911 and administrative calls annually. The regional 911 system includes Cass, Clay, Jackson, Platte and Ray counties in Missouri, and Douglas, Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami and Wyandotte counties in Kansas.

View more photos from this year’s event on MARC’s Flickr page.