Final date for submission for the 2024 annual Northern California APCO Chapter awards is Friday, March 29, 2024. All nominations this year will be submitted online using Google Forms. Please see a description of each award below, and click on the link to be taken to that application. Each award winner will receive a comparable award as our in person awards, so please submit those applications to honor those that work hard as First Responders and those that support them.

If you are unable to use the Google Form, please submit an agency memo in lieu of the form. The memo can be emailed to

Awards Banquet

This year, the award winners and a guest will enjoy a scenic evening cruise on the Sacramento River with dinner and entertainment. Join us May 17 in Sacramento aboard the River City Queen.

May 17, 2024 at 5:00 PM

Boarding begins at 4:30 PM


Here are the award categories, click on each to be brought to a description of them:
Telecommunicator of the Year
IT Technician of the Year
RF Technician of the Year
Line Supervisor of the Year
Dispatch Team of the Year
Trainer of the Year
Communications Center Director of the Year
The Preston Thomson Award of Excellence

Telecommunicator of the Year

Sample Responsibilities

  • Functions as a front-line dispatcher or call taker for police, fire, and/or EMS agencies.
  • Operates telecommunications equipment to receive emergency and non-emergency phone calls.
  • Determines situations from callers and ascertains all required information for dispatch of a call.
  • Relays information to a dispatcher (if a separate position) via CAD or manual dispatch cards.
  • Operates radio equipment to dispatch first responder units to request emergency services, receives radio traffic from first responders, monitors emergency and support radio frequencies.
  • Maintains unit status and practices both decision-making and multitasking skills.
  • Operates computer equipment to assist both officers and citizens with the retrieval of information.
  • Maintains appropriate security and confidentiality of information created or encountered in the performance of assigned duties.

Sample Job Titles

  • Public Safety Dispatcher, Emergency Communications Operator, Dispatcher, or Call Taker.

IT Technician of the Year

Sample Job Responsibilities

    • Provides technical support and performs professional work related to the operation and support of computer hardware, peripherals, and software applications.
    • Participates in the evaluation and implementation of new computing technologies.
    • Performs complex level application support work on the agency’s computer applications systems.
    • Provides project and program leadership to professional and technical staff.
    • Provides project management for large scale support projects.
    • Performs routine to complex level application support work on the agency’s computer applications systems.
    • Performs advanced level telecommunications work related to the purchase, installation, and maintenance of communications equipment.
    • Performs technical work gathering, analyzing, and summarizing data.
    • Performs and coordinates the activities necessary to administer and manage the databases and systems used within and across departments throughout the agency.
    • Designs and develops GIS applications.
    • Provides analytical modeling in support of planning functions.
    • Manages and coordinates the design installation, upgrade and maintenance of agency wide network systems.

Sample Job Titles

  • Systems Administrator, Information Technologist Specialist, Information Technologist, Network Administrator, Systems Engineer, Senior Computer Analyst, CAD/GIS Administrator, Network Services Supervisor, NCIC/CAD System Manager, Technician, 9-1-1 Systems, Information Technology Coordinator, Senior Project Manager, Records Technician (MSAG Coordinator), Mobile/CAD System Administrator, Information Technology Specialist 4, IT Tech and Address/Mapping Coordinator, etc.

RF Technician of the Year

Sample Responsibilities:

  • Manages the installation, operation, and maintenance of equipment.
  • Maintains knowledge of 700MHz, 800MHz, and P25 radio communications systems and equipment.
  • Possesses experience in UHF/VHF radios, repeaters, digital/analog microwave, and an extensive network of mobile radios.
  • Demonstrates ability to work with many different user agencies.
  • Possesses ability to provide information to assist in grant writing for radio.
  • Prepares and maintains various records of maintenance and operation as required by the FCC including renewal of FCC licensing.
  • Installs and/or oversees the installation of radio site ground, antenna systems, security systems, carrier equipment (ex.T1,DS3), emergency power generators, fuel systems, towers, transmission lines, and site alarm status reporting equipment.
  • Maintains current experience in state of the art electronic equipment repair, including bench repair and radio transmitting and receiving equipment.
  • Plans for infrastructure additions, site expansions and improvements as necessary to insure coverage and systems reliability.
  • Develops and presents written and oral recommendations, budgets, and schedules for upgrading existing systems.

Sample Job Titles:

  • Director Public Safety Communications, Electronics Communications Technician, Telecommunications Engineer, Communications Technician, Senior Communications Technician, Radio Lead Technician, Radio Technician, Technical Systems Administrator, etc.

Line Supervisor of the Year

Sample Responsibilities

  • Plans, organizes, establishes objectives; resolves difficult and complex operational issues; participates in the administration of a Communications Center, and supervises one or more employees.
  • Is familiar with all operations and functions expected of subordinates and demonstrates that knowledge on a regular basis.
  • Monitors and evaluates staff performance for completeness, accuracy and compliance with established policies and procedures.
  • Recognizes performance issues and takes appropriate measures to correct, or praise employees.
  • Is able to quickly prioritize and organize operational functions and makes appropriate decisions in stressful situations.
  • Recognizes and mitigates potential issues within, or affecting, the Communications Center and is able to diffuse tense situations.
  • Maintains a professional attitude at all times and ensures employees maintain the same.
  • Promotes a positive working relationship with subordinates as well as supervisors, coworkers, and other professional entities.

Sample Job Titles

  • Dispatch Line Supervisor, Dispatch Supervisor, Dispatch Operations Shift Supervisor, Supervising Public Safety Dispatcher, Supervisor, Shift Manager/Supervisor, Communications Supervisor, Communications Shift Supervisor, Communications Center Supervisor, Line Supervisor, Operations Supervisor, Emergency Resource Supervisor, Telecommunications Supervisor, Senior Fire Communications Supervisor

Dispatch Team of the Year

Team members may hold any title within a Public-Safety Communications Center.

Trainer of the Year

Sample Responsibilities:

  • Plans, develops, schedules and conducts on the job and/or classroom training for 9-1-1 and public safety communications call takers, dispatchers and supervisors.
  • Evaluates trainees’ skills and job performance.
  • Plans and/or develops advanced training for 911 public safety communications call takers, dispatchers and supervisors.
  • Assists with developing and enhancing trainees’ professional knowledge, skill, and ability through in-service training or career development training.

Sample Job Titles:

  • Communications Training Officer (CTO), Field Training Officer (FTO), Communications Training
    Instructor, Career Development Coordinator, Manager, Supervisor, Specialist, etc.

Communications Center Director of the Year

Sample Responsibilities:

  • Maintains appropriate contacts with the public, users and the media on the proper use of the emergency communications system.
  • Responsible for planning and directing the daily operations of the Communications Center.
  • Responsible for developing and monitoring the policies and procedures of the
    Communications Center.
  • Serves on advisory boards and other professional organizations and fosters the professionalism of the agency.
  • Maintains active liaisons with all participants, customers, emergency service providers and other departments and local, state and federal agencies relative to the operations of the Communications Center.
  • Prepares and submits an annual plan, including budget preparation and administration, program goals and Capital Improvement Plan.
  • Employs, schedules, counsels, disciplines, and evaluates the performance of Communications Center staff.
  • Performs a variety of functions as directed that could include accounts payable and employee payroll.

Sample Job Titles:

  • Director, Assistant Director, Executive Director, Deputy Director, PSAP Manager, Communication Center Director, Communications Director/Manager, Communications Administrator, Center Manager, Communications Chief, Public Safety Manager, Communications, etc.

The Preston Thomson Award of Excellence

The Preston Thomson Award of Excellence is designed for individuals who have performed and demonstrated exceptional and outstanding accomplishments within the purview of their duties and responsibilities as described in the following nominating categories: Telecommunicator, Communications Center Manager, Supervisor, Trainer, IT Technologist, or RF Technologist.