April 10, 2024 by Flynn Nogueira

Kicking off NPSTW

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Industries: 9-1-1 & Law Enforcement

Topics: CAD NG9-1-1 PSAPs Public Safety Applications Records and Evidence Situational Awareness SaaS

DeeDee and Lorenzo share their passion, purpose and pride

As we kick off National Public Safety Telecommunicator Week, April 14 – 20, the first of the stories we are sharing with you are of Motorolans who have sat in the chair. Motorola Solutions has many employees who are former telecommunicators whose experience brings incredible value and knowledge in keeping people safe and saving lives.

Beginning April 15 we have eight more stories coming from telecommunicators from across the US and Canada. And this blog will take you to them!

Meet DeeDee Wilson and Lorenzo Clark

The passion, purpose and pride they held as telecommunicators continues to drive their desire to serve today. As DeeDee says, “I always have been and will always be a telecommunicator.” 

DeeDee is the PremierOne CAD product manager. The experience she gained dispatching, training and managing a 9-1-1 center in Northern California has benefited not only the PSAPs Motorola Solutions serves, but her colleagues across Motorola Solutions.  “For the last twelve years, as a Motorolan,” says Dee Dee, “I’ve had the opportunity to work with hundreds of our customers in different public safety dispatch centers and help them find solutions to make their job safer.”

Lorenzo, like DeeDee, says being a telecommunicator remains in his heart and his passion to serve. “I dispatched for fifteen years in Nashville, Tennessee and gained a lot of experience that is a part of my commitment and involvement in what I do today.” 

Lorenzo is on the product demonstration team and travels around the country speaking to telecommunicators helping them understand how to use Motorola Solutions’ products to help them do their jobs safer and more efficiently. 

The telecommunicator profession 

When asked why the telecommunicator profession is so important, each responded with the memories of what they accomplished in the chair. 

“When you think about the responsibility a telecommunicator has, on any given day, there is a lot of passion that comes from that individual because you’re the voice on the phone for that person who could be having the worst day in their life or the best,” says Lorenzo. “I remember taking calls for people where someone was being shot or trying to commit suicide; but then at the same time, I was there to aid someone bringing a child into into the world. At the end of the day, the telecommunicator is the first, first responder, the first voice a person hears.”

DeeDee couldn’t agree more. “Telecommunicators save lives and make a difference in people’s lives. I’ve talked through someone giving birth, and she was home by herself, to being the last person someone spoke with. Telecommunicators hear unbelievable things, just like firefighters and police officers see unbelievable things.”

The hardest call

We asked Lorenzo and DeeDee what is the hardest call they have taken – the one that stays with them and here is their description.

Proud of what you do

When asked what they are proud of, both recounted actions they took that continue to influence and drive recognition for the telecommunicator profession.

“What I am most proud of,” says DeeDee, “was being able to make our center better and to help other dispatchers. Within a year of becoming a dispatcher, you need to take the hundred and twenty hour basic dispatcher course. I was in a rural center so we had to send people out of town for those three weeks which was a hardship for them and for our agency. I went through a master instructor program and brought that course to our community college. Not only did it save our dispatchers from having to travel so far, it became a very good recruiting tool as people take it as a community college course and then hire from there. It’s still in existence today. I’m always looking for different ways to see how we can move the profession forward. That’s part of the reason why I’m here at Motorola Solutions.” 

Lorenzo describes how, when he was at Nashville, he was the union president. “We were fighting to get recognized. I remember speaking in front of our city council multiple times, pleading the case for what we did as telecommunicators. It was just last year that we got the recognition for all of those that I sat beside who worked twenty-five, thirty years –  to see them being able to fully retire, be fully vested, is a great feeling.”

Let’s celebrate

NPSTW is the time to celebrate the incredible people who keep us safe, who are the first voice a 9-1-1 caller hears. Thank you Dee Dee and Lorenzo for sharing your stories and for your passion, purpose and pride. 

Stay tuned as we publish more inspiring stories for you starting Monday, April 15. You can check back to this blog and it will take you to the world of the telecommunicator – whom we are so honored to serve.

For more information, visit us at www.motorolasolutions.com/ng911 

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