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City of Lincoln
Mayor's Office

2006 Media Releases

July 10, 2006
For More Information Contact:
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 441-7831


Mayor Coleen J. Seng today presented the Mayor’s Award of Excellence for June to Rebecca Lyons, an Emergency Dispatcher in the 911 Emergency Communications Center. The monthly award recognizes City employees who consistently provide exemplary service and work that demonstrates personal commitment to the City. The award was presented at the beginning of today’s City Council meeting.

Lyons has worked for the 911 Center since September 2002. She was nominated in the category of valor by 911 Communications Manager Julie Righter. Righter said dispatchers routinely take life-threatening emergency calls and cell phones have added a new level of complexity to the processing of emergency calls. With calls from regular phones, dispatchers are able to see the actual address of the location from which the 911 call was placed, even if the caller is incapacitated. With 911 calls from cell phones, no location is available for the dispatcher’s use.

Lyons was nominated for her handling of a 911 call from a cell phone in January of this year. The call was from a teenager whose friend began having a seizure while they were out walking. The caller did not know where they were and could see no addresses or street signs in the area. Lyons asked if the caller could provide the license plate number from any vehicles parked in driveways nearby. After getting registration information from the Police Department, Lyons was able to pinpoint the address and send medical response. Righter praised Lyons for her ingenuity and for making every effort to locate the source of the call.

The other categories in which employees can be nominated are loss prevention, safety, customer relations and productivity. All City employees are eligible for the Mayor’s Award of Excellence except for elected officials and some managers. Individuals or teams can be nominated by supervisors, peers, subordinates and the general public. Nomination forms are available from department heads, employee bulletin boards or the Personnel Department, which oversees the awards program.

All nominations are reviewed by the Mayor’s Award of Excellence Committee, which includes a representative with each union and a non-union representative appointed by the Mayor. Award winners receive a $100 U.S. savings bond, a day off with pay and a plaque. Monthly winners are eligible to receive the annual award, which comes with a $500 U.S. savings bond, two days off with pay and a plaque.

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