BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Bakersfield police announced its “Dispatcher of the Year” for 2020 is Lance Powell, who has served a total of almost 27 years in the department’s communications center.
A Dispatch Academy instructor, Powell is recognized for his ability in helping trainees through the last phases of training, earning him the nickname “The Closer,” police said. He taught two classes in 2020 on interpersonal skills and domestic violence.
Powell’s experience proved invaluable on Nov. 7, 2020, police said, when he received a call to check the welfare of a 93-year-old woman who hadn’t been heard from for several days. Recognizing the woman may have suffered serious injury, Powell initiated a priority police and medical aid response.
First responders found the woman had fallen and been unable to get help. Police said Powell’s decision to make the call a priority “eliminated the potential for additional suffering.”