At the SWODA Public Safety Conference, front row from left, Patricia Redmon, Sayre PD; Dana Church, SWODA; and Bridget Stout, Elk City PD. Back row, Danette Traugott, SWODA; Leslie, Elk City PD; Mona Sims, Weatherford PD; and Christina Franks, Elk City PD.
Attendance was up at this year’s Annual Public Safety Conference in Norman. The conference, entitled “9-1-1…Your Worst Day is Our Work Day,” offered comprehensive training for Public Safety Communications Officers from across Oklahoma.
“Our region was well represented,” said Dana Church, E911 Director with South Western Oklahoma Development Authority (SWODA),” with a total of seven in attendance from across our area.”
The Southwestern Oklahoma Regional 911 Association provided scholarships to three of those attending from our area including Christina Franks with the Elk City Police Department, Mona Sims with the Weatherford Police Department and Patricia Redmon with the Sayre Police Department. Other area attendees include Dana Church and Danette Traugott with SWODA, and Bridget Stout and Leslie Denley with the Elk City Police Department.
Oklahoma Lieutenant Governor, Todd Lamb, who was formerly in law enforcement, was the opening session speaker. He complimented the workers in the public safety communications industry and stated, “My door is always open for you.”
The conference continued throughout the day with a variety of breakout sessions and networking opportunities. Attendees were able to plot their own course throughout the day.
“The conference is two and one-half days packed full of classes. It’s inexpensive, which helps the smaller communities that can’t afford high priced classes for their communication officers, said Lieutenant Bridget Stout, “…It is a pleasure working for the Elk City PD. Our Chief wants us to think of this as a career, not just a job. With a career you always need continued training.”
“I am thankful for the opportunity to attend the DPS Conference this past week,” said Patty Redmon, “I know without the scholarship, I wouldn’t have been able to attend. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it and learned a great deal.”
There were also some exciting door prizes given away throughout the day to help lighten the workload. Bridget Stout with the Elk City Police Department won a bag of autographed rock and roll CDs along with autographed copies of Steven Tyler and Sammy Hagar’s books.
“This profession has a tendency to be rather secluded, so it was a great reminder that there are others all across not just our state but the country and world that deal with the same issues. Be it personal or work related, we all just want to make a difference in peoples’ everyday lives,” said Christina Franks.