TRANSFORM911Practitioner Corner

Practitioner Corner

The Practitioner Corner features short videos by 911 professionals about their work, the field, and the changes they hope to see. Interested in being featured here? Email us at

Julian Silvestri | Tucson, Arizona

“One thing that would better help support 9-1-1 professionals across the board is better training programs.”

Karina Putnam | Kent, Washington | video 1

“I would hope to see, number one, above all, recognition that we are first responders.”

Michelle Little | Portland, Oregon

“Having representation, diversity in the job force that reflects what our communities look like is very important.”

Rita Salazar | King County, Washington

“We have lost probably 30 percent of our workforce in the last two years.”

Ivan de la Torre | Tucson, Arizona

“What I find most rewarding about my work is knowing that I was able to provide a critical service to someone who is in high danger or high stress, and I was able to get them out of that situation.”

Kristina Gore | Portland, Oregon

“It’s important to take care of our mental health as we’re doing this difficult work.”

Karina Putnam | Kent, Washington | video 2

“This is a high calling, and a lot of us feel strongly about making everything better for the next generation.”

Gwendolyn Douglas | New Orleans, Louisiana

“I already take pride in my work, and I just think that [reclassification] would be such a big morale booster for myself and my team.”

Beth Mackey | Rogers County, Oklahoma

“I would classify all 9-1-1 dispatchers and call takers and anyone on radio traffic as a first responder.”

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The Health Lab strives to improve public health, its impacts, and how it is discussed. If you identify an area of our work that you believe misses a critical perspective or employs language that needs improvement, please contact us at We welcome your feedback.