Several Frederick County Department of Emergency Communications employees earned top honors last week at the Mid-Eastern Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) Fall Conference in Ocean City, bringing home awards for Director of the Year and Team of the Year.
“I am so proud of our team at the 9-1-1 Center,” said County Executive Jessica Fitzwater. “Frederick County is a statewide leader in the service our emergency call-takers provide. These dedicated employees work hard every day to keep our community safe.”
Assistant Director of Emergency Communications Kristie Dutrow was recognized by Mid-Eastern APCO as Communications Center Director of the Year for the State of Maryland. Dutrow was nominated for her work on improving the mental health of Frederick County’s 9-1-1 employees. Since her career began in 1998, Dutrow has provided enhanced employee training on mental well-being and advocated for a behavioral health coordinator to support Frederick County 9-1-1.
Team of the Year honors went to Frederick County employees of Teams A and F, who were recognized for their combined efforts in processing 62 emergency calls in 10 minutes and managing over 1,900 radio transmissions during the March 4, 2023, tanker fire on US 15 in Frederick. Emergency Communications Managers Jeffrey Lowman and James Worley II were recognized for their leadership during the incident.
Teams A and F managed the tanker incident while also handling numerous other incidents in the County. Recognized team members include Eric Stackhouse, Amanda Miss; Morgan Click, Angelia Axline, Jen Butler, Lisa Lanam, Jacob Dmuchowski, Hunter Clark, and Amelia Halvorsen.
In addition, Emergency Communications Supervisor Tom Ward was sworn in as the 2nd Vice President of Mid-Eastern APCO. Ward began his career with Frederick County in 2016 and serves on two committees with APCO International. As the Mid-Eastern APCO Vice President, Ward will advocate for the hundreds of 9-1-1 professionals across Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia.
Founded in 1935, APCO International is the world’s oldest and largest organization of public safety communications professionals.
Under the Division of Emergency Management, the Frederick County Department of Emergency Communications serves as the Public Safety Answering Point for all 9-1-1 calls and non-emergency requests and coordinates after-hours communications for County agencies. DEC dispatches fire, rescue, emergency medical services, and law enforcement, including Frederick County Sheriff’s Office, Brunswick City Police, Thurmont Police Department, Animal Control, and other County agencies.