For Immediate Release: March 14, 2011

The Carrollton Municipal Complex

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Carrollton, TX9-1-1 Telecommunicators Brenda Rodriguez of the City of Carrollton Public Safety Communications (PSC) Center and Angela Sherrod, Lewisville Police Department were awarded the 2011 Dr. Allen Groff Emergency Medical Dispatch scholarship by the Denco Area 9-1-1 District Board of Managers at its March meeting. Denco Area 9-1-1 District serves as the coordinating agency for 9-1-1 emergency service throughout Denton County and the entire City of Carrollton. It is the organization which implemented and maintains the 9-1-1 system.

The recipients were chosen by the Denco board based on specific application criteria, interest in the area of medical dispatch, general compliance with established Emergency Medical Dispatch protocols and overall attitude. Rodriguez and Sherrod will attend the national Navigator Emergency Dispatch conference in April. The scholarship includes paid travel to the conference, hotel room and registration fee. Both winners have committed to sharing knowledge learned at the conference with their fellow dispatchers from across the District.

Denco 9-1-1 board vice chair, Mayor Olive Stephens presented the awards to this year’s recipients, commenting that, “it’s you that make the 9-1-1 system work for our citizens.” Board chair, Jack Miller said “scoring the applications is one of the most challenging tasks that Board members undertake, since the applicants are all so deserving of the opportunity.”

Rodriguez, a veteran Telecommunicator with more than 20 years of experience, was excited about the chance to attend a national conference. In her application, she stated, “it is because of my EMD training that I am able to get the best possible care to those needing help, in the quickest manner possible.” She plans to return from the conference with new knowledge that will help her “do her best each day.”

All Telecommunicators in Denton County are trained as Emergency Medical Dispatchers (EMDs) using the nationally recognized and certified Priority Dispatch System. When a 9-1-1 caller has a medical emergency, the EMD uses a flip card system to ask detailed questions about the situation and provide pre-arrival instructions, when appropriate. Using the system, Telecommunicators can provide step-by-step instructions for performing CPR, the Heimlich maneuver, and even delivering a baby.

The scholarship was established in 2000 by the Denco board to honor the memory of Dr. Allen Groff who served on the board from 1992 until his passing in August, 2000. As a primary care physician serving northern Denton County, Groff was committed to high quality Emergency Medical Dispatch training for Telecommunicators who answer 9-1-1 calls across the district.

City of Carrollton Public Safety Communications Center Manager Raney Tate said, “Brenda Rodriguez is the 8th City of Carrollton PSC dispatcher to receive this annual scholarship since it was first offered 11 years ago.  I believe this speaks directly to the quality of our dispatchers, who truly are the first responders serving our community in emergencies.”

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