San Diego Association of Public Safety Dispatchers
Dispatcher of the Year
San Diego Sheriff's Department
Emergency Services Dispatcher
Please describe in 500 words or less why the nominee should receive this award:
The San Diego Sheriff's Communications Center would like to nominate Emergency Services Dispatcher Sarah Ward for SDAPSD Dispatcher of the Year. Sarah began her career with the Sheriff's Communications Center on January 9, 2015. During her five year tenure, Sarah has shown herself to be a well-rounded dispatcher that exemplifies the traits of an exceptional dispatcher. There are many talented dispatchers that come to work, do their job well, and go home. Sarah does so much more. She goes above and beyond in everything she does every day. She has a variety of characteristics that make her an excellent candidate for Dispatcher of the Year. At the San Diego Sheriff's Department, critical incidents occur daily some of them rising to the level of being high profile and in the news. Sarah has handled several of these incidents, the most notable being the Chabad of Poway shooting and the Del Mar concert shooting. She navigated both incidents with exceptional poise and a calm and soothing presence. Both incidents required coordination with multiple agencies and multiple patches to facilitate radio communications for responding mutual aid. Sarah's exceptional knowledge of the systems at the communications center helps her to get through incidents such as these with minimal assistance. If you are watching Sarah while she is in the middle of a critical incident, you would never know the gravity of what she is handling. Her demeanor remains calm and she always has a smile on her face. When Sarah isn’t handling her own critical incident, she is a great radio partner and helps out wherever she can. Whether she just handled an officer involved shooting or is on her way out after a 12 hour shift, Sarah is a friend to all and a joy to work with. Her positive personality lights up the dispatch floor and reassures all her coworkers during tense times. Sarah is always willing to share her knowledge with others. Her supervisors and peers all share the sentiment that she is a joy to work with. Sarah has received several commendations from field units for being a team player. One deputy stated "Definitely part of the team. You make our day so smooth, your way of being calm, the way you read the call, and how you allow us to work even though at times we are knuckle heads. Thank you for all your help!". Another quote exemplifies how the field units feel about Sarah "We all really like hearing you on the air. Trust me. We say it's going to be a great day when you are on". There is no doubt that there are many deserving candidates for the Dispatcher of the Year Award. Our hope is that Sarah Ward is selected.