January 2016

Officer Charles Gerhart, Missouri Capitol Police, has been selected as the January, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Officer Gerhart was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his unselfish actions in rescuing a citizen from a burning vehicle caused by an automotive accident, as he was traveling off duty with his family to a water amusement park. Officer Gerhart could have kept his distance by just calling in the accident, but he did what he was trained to do which is to protect and serve. Officer Gerhart’s instinctive response clearly demonstrates his leadership qualities and willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty.

February 2016

Cody Hanavan, Electronic Gaming Device Specialist II within the Missouri Gaming Commission, has been selected as the February, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Cody was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his initiative and willingness to expand the scope of a routine patron complaint, which revealed an unbeknownst promotional deficiency at a Missouri casino. Cody’s extensive technical knowledge of electronic gaming devices and the gaming system greatly attributed to the investigation and its outcome. As a result, all future gaming promotions of this kind will be administered in a fair and equitable manner and according to the rules governing the event, ensuring the integrity of the industry.

March 2016

Derek Lohner, State Emergency Management Agency, has been selected as the March, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Derek serves as the Region Coordinator for Region C, which encompasses 11 counties and the City of St. Louis, and was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his coordinated response and recovery efforts during the historic Missouri flooding in late December, 2015 and early January, 2016. The foundation of a successful Regional Coordinator is the development of strong relationships with the local emergency management officials, which is something that Derek excels at. Derek’s credibility through those relationships and his ability to plan, exercise and prioritize for and during disaster situations that one hopes never happen were continually demonstrated through strong, consistent, simultaneous coordination of local, state, and federal response and recovery activities.

April 2016

Darrell Taube, Senior Procurement and Inventory Manager within the Missouri State Highway Patrol, has been selected as the April, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Darrell was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of the manner in which he manages multiple specialties simultaneously with ease, expertise, and a positive attitude. Each area, including purchasing, supply, and print shop operations, is unique and has very specific management needs and goals that are essential to the overall operation, efficiency and effectiveness of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. It goes without saying, and all who approach him with a business need will attest, that Darrell’s experience, skills and knowledge have led to the earned trust and respect they have for him and make him a tremendous asset to the agency. The selfless giving of his time combined with his experience, knowledge and work ethic make Darrell the epitome of what any employee should strive to be.

May 2016

Sgt. Brooks McGinnis, and Sgt. Gregory Primm, Missouri State Highway Patrol, have been selected as the May, 2016 Employees of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Together, Sgt. McGinnis and Sgt. Primm make up Troop A SEIZ Unit and are responsible for interdicting drug couriers traveling through Missouri. Sgt. McGinnis and Sgt. Primm were chosen as the Employees of the Month because of their invaluable service to the state for their level assistance and dedication to other officers in accomplishing the mission of ridding Missouri’s roadways of drug traffickers. In 2015, Sgt. McGinnis and Sgt. Primm together conducted 671 traffic stops, of which 159 involved searches that resulted in contraband being located in 126 of those searches. This computes to an outstanding “hit rate” of 79%. Sgt. McGinnis and Sgt. Primm routinely work long hours to assist officers with vehicle stops, searches, arrests, and follow up investigations. With contagious work ethics and demonstrated leadership qualities, Sgt. McGinnis and Sgt. Primm directly influence the success of other officers who in turn ultimately make Missouri a safer place to live.

June 2016

Sgt. Mike Broniec, Tpr. Derek Mason, and Tpr. Jose Sanchez, Missouri State Highway Patrol, have been selected as the June, 2016 Employees of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Sgt. Broniec, Tpr. Mason, and Tpr. Sanchez were chosen as the Employees of the Month because of the integral role that they each played in an investigation that originated in New Mexico, crossed many state lines and engaged many different law enforcement agencies. The case involved an adult male attempting to smuggle an abducted minor child to Portugal with the intent to use her as a sex slave. The New Mexico investigator knew that the suspect and minor child were on a Greyhound bus and headed east, but was met with resistence as to the seriousness of the event until he made contact with Sgt. Broniec, Tpr. Mason and Tpr. Sanchez. Because of Sgt. Broniec, Tpr. Mason and Tpr. Sanchez’s commitment to the investigation and the amount of hours that they each expended in effort to locate the suspect and child, the suspect was captured in Indiana and extradited back to New Mexico, while the minor child was safely reunited with her family also in New Mexico. Search warrants of the suspect’s New Mexico home resulted in insurmountable amounts of evidence and manufactured child pornography.

July 2016

Amy Trachsel, Auditor I within the Missouri Gaming Commission, has been selected as the July, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Amy was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of the reliable, consistent, professional, and attentive manner in which she performs the responsibilities of her position. Amy’s position includes checking for discrepancies with casino filings that would result in the State not collecting the correct amount of taxes. Amy takes this responsibility very seriously as she works to ensure there are no inconsistencies or miscalculations and that Missouri’s casino regulations are professionally and consistently applied.

August 2016

Paul Martin, Cemetery Worker within the Missouri Veterans Commission, has been selected as the August, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Paul was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his heartfelt initiative to and his individual compassion for an elderly veteran who, while visiting the grave of his wife, became ill. As the veteran was physically at his wife’s grave site, Paul noticed that he was in immediate obvious need of assistance. Had Paul not been quick on his response to the veteran, who was alone for the visit, his condition could have quickly deteriorated. Paul’s actions were what we would hope to be common of all people, but especially more for those who are employed in a service dedicated to the care of veterans and their dependents. Paul is a shining example of how we all should respond in any situation where another human is in need.

September 2016

Trooper James Thuss, Missouri State Highway Patrol, has been selected as the September, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Trooper Thuss was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his heroic actions at the scene of a two vehicle crash in Cass County. Trooper Thuss was performing his routine law enforcement duties when he came upon a horrific motor vehicle crash, in which one of vehicles was on fire and the driver was trapped inside. Without hesitation and regard for his own safety, Trooper Thuss entered the burning vehicle to secure the driver. While extracting the driver from the vehicle, Trooper Thuss was giving verbal information and commands to bystanders and fellow responding law enforcement officers. Without a doubt, Trooper Thuss’ quick actions, bravery, and dedication saved the driver’s life.

October 2016

Trooper Adam Miller, Missouri State Highway Patrol, has been selected as the October, 2016 Employee of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Trooper Miller was chosen as the Employee of the Month because of his heroic actions at the scene of a residential fire in Sikeston. Trooper Miller was performing his typical law enforcement duties when he overheard and responded to radio traffic regarding a nearby house fire. Upon arrival at the fire and without regard to his own personal safety, Trooper Miller entered the smoke filled residence and was unable to see. In effort to assist with searching for occupants, Trooper Miller remained low, crawled and felt his way through the residence and discovered an individual sitting in a chair. As no response was given from the subject, Trooper Miller grabbed the individual and dragged him to the doorway, where he received further assistance from other law enforcement personnel that responded to the fire. Trooper Miller and the subject, who was later identified as a disabled individual that could not walk or talk, were both transported for medical treatment. Trooper Miller’s actions demonstrate the highest and utmost regard for the citizens of the state of Missouri. Without a doubt, Trooper Miller’s quick actions, bravery, and dedication attributed to saving the individual’s life.

November 2016

Trooper Shayne Talburt, and Trooper Logan Monahan, Missouri State Highway Patrol, have been selected as the November, 2016 Employees of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Tpr. Talburt and Tpr. Monahan were chosen as the Employees of the Month for their heroic actions in rescuing an elder driver trapped inside a crashed vehicle which was partially submerged in flooded waters. Tpr. Talburt and Tpr. Monahan fearlessly entered the contaminated flooded waterway of up to six feet in depth, applied sound safety medical procedures and combatted the flooded waterway to safely remove the driver from the vehicle, transport him to the bank and ultimately saving the drivers life.

December 2016

Sergeant Jason Glendenning, and Trooper Tyler Zimmerman, Missouri State Highway Patrol, have been selected as the December 2016 Employees of the Month for the Department of Public Safety. Sgt. Glendenning and Tpr. Zimmerman were chosen as the Employees of the Month because of their heroic actions on the waterways of the Niangua River in July, 2016. Sgt. Glendenning and Tpr. Zimmerman deployed their jet boat proactively searching for trouble areas after a recent flooding event. Within four miles on the river, they located an area where the river flow was sweeping into a larger tree, creating a strainer. Strainers are formed when an object blocks the passage of larger objects, but allows the flow of water to continue. These objects can be very dangerous for individuals floating into the area because the force of the water can pin a body against the strainer and eventually push the body under the water. Before Sgt. Glendenning and Tpr. Zimmerman could even attempt to reduce the strainer by cutting tree limbs, multiple individuals on the waterway were put in harm’s way at this location. Sgt. Glendenning and Tpr. Zimmerman went above and beyond to save the lives of multiple individuals. They maneuvered their boat into the dangerous area on multiple occasions, entered the water, and placed themselves in harm’s way to protect the lives of the citizens in danger on the waterway. The courage and dedication displayed by Sgt. Glendenning and Tpr. Zimmerman during these rescues speak volumes to their character.