U.S. ARMY DUGWAY PROVING GROUND, Utah -- Heather Dekanich the lead public safety dispatcher at the Directorate of Emergency Services will be presented the Dugway Garrison Employee of the Quarter award.

"She is an incredibly valued member of Team DES who drives her team to high achievement standards with accuracy and professionalism," said Jennifer Ball, Dekanich's supervisor and mentor.

As a Public Safety Dispatcher for five and a half years, Dekanich has provided emergency police, fire and medical services to the public by answering emergency 911 calls and dispatching the appropriate personnel and equipment. She also provides Advanced Emergency Medical Dispatch Life Support care by delivering pre-arrival instructions to callers.

An emergency dispatcher, she is often a lifeline in a remote, rural community like Dugway.

Dekanich coordinates resources, makes notifications, runs safety and equipment checks, and generally helps anywhere it is needed, she said.

Dekanich wanted to serve as dispatcher because her husband, also a Dugway employee, would always talk about how "terrific" the Chief of Police, Phillip Fishbeck, was with his employees.

"He really looks out for his people and does anything and everything in his power for them," he said.

Service seems to come as second nature to her. She is active in a number of other ways to improve the circumstances.

"I love being able to make a difference and being a Public Safety Dispatcher, I feel that I am able to help people when they are having their worst possible day," she said.

Dekanich chaired duties as the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Coordinator for the Directorate of Emergency Services. CFC promotes and supports philanthropy in the workforce using an employee-focused program that provides a way for all federal employees to improve the quality of life for others in need.

"Her untiring efforts, creativity, and dedication to excellence contributed greatly to the success of raising $4,088 from her fellow employees. This was the highest donation received by any single directorate on the installation," Ball said.

But this is only a small part of why she is considered such a valued employee.

Dekanich volunteered to serve as a Dugway Police representative for the Tooele County's "Shop with a Cop" an annual event that brings a number of external police agencies to Dugway to raise funds to help children whose families face financial difficulties at Christmas. The combined county police agencies raised nearly $21,000 dollars.

She said it was amazing to have so many people working together for such a worthwhile cause. Noting that working directly with Sgt. Wall and Officers Ales and Summerhays was especially rewarding.

Deeply supportive of the Dugway community and the team at DES, Dekanich volunteered for additional shifts on Halloween, Thanksgiving and on New Year's Day to give team members a chance to spend time with their families during the holidays. She also helped organize a Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas party so the team could celebrate together.

"I love the people I work with," she confessed. "The team that Chief Fishbeck has assembled is awesome."

Dekanich is quick to praise the efforts of those who have encouraged her to be involved in the community.

"My supervisor, Jennifer Ball, goes above and beyond to make sure her employees have everything possible to succeed. We have a great work environment," she said. "Jennifer is the go-to person in the directorate. It's great to work with someone who has such a broad base of knowledge to learn from."

The citation:

Throughout this timeframe Mrs. Dekanich's demonstrated initiative, enthusiasm, professional ability, and sincere devotion to duty, which added immensely to the successful accomplishments of the Directorate of Emergency Services. Her actions
reflect great credit upon herself, the Directorate of Emergency Services, and the United States Army :To Protect and Serve America's Heroes!

"Our DES team is just fantastic, everyone is willing to go out of their way to help one another, we truly are a team," she added.
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U.S. Army Dugway Proving Ground is the nation's designated Major Range and Test Facility Base for chemical and biological defense testing. It provides testing, evaluation, training, and technical support to the Department of Defense, inter-agency partners, and our Allies. Dugway's Garrison plays a key role in support of the test center and the post community.