March

Non-Sworn Employees of the Month

March 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month, Tim KempkerMarch 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month, Liz Leuckel

Tim Kempker and Liz Leuckel
Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Unit
Office of the Director

Tim Kempker and Liz Leuckel, with the Office of the Director’s Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Unit, have been selected as the Department of Public Safety's March 2019 Non-Sworn Employees of the Month.

Tim and Liz administer the Law Enforcement Support Office (LESO) Program, which gets valuable surplus U.S. Department of Defense equipment to Missouri law enforcement agencies to help them better serve their communities. They’re being recognized for their outstanding efforts, efficiency and commitment to serving our local law enforcement partners.

The LESO Program allows Missouri law enforcement agencies to acquire useful law enforcement and emergency response equipment they would never be able to afford due to budget constraints. But responding to the 300 Missouri agencies now utilizing the program and complying with complicated federal oversight requirements takes long hours, patience and attention to detail. Tim and Liz meet all of these expectations while working in an off-site office of DPS.

Largely self-trained, Tim and Liz have administered the LESO Program for less than two years but continue to perform exceedingly well managing an inventory that now exceeds 6,300 pieces of property and $26 million in value.

Their efforts make Tim and Liz outstanding models for other DPS employees to emulate!

Sworn Employee of the Month

March 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month, Gary Grundy

Gary E. Gundy
Trooper
Missouri State Highway Patrol

Gary E. Gundy, a Trooper with the Missouri State Highway Patrol, has been selected as the Department of Public Safety’s March 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month.

Gary is a road trooper assigned to central Missouri’s Troop F. He was chosen for the excellence he demonstrated during four separate high-stress incidents he handled over a one-week period in November, including capturing a suspected bank robber.

While off duty, Gary stopped on I-70 to check on what first appeared to be a medical emergency in a vehicle. It turned out to be a domestic assault in progress. Gary captured the fleeing suspect, subdued him and held him until police arrived.

Four days later, Gary was working a crash on I-70 when a multi-vehicle crash occurred, killing four people. Gary handled control of the scene, rerouting traffic, and the initial investigation with professionalism.

The next day, while handling paperwork from the crash, Gary learned of an armed bank robbery, responded, and quickly located and apprehended a suspect – who was half his age – after a foot pursuit.

One day later, Gary responded to a crash involving a commercial vehicle hauling car batteries. He handled the investigation and remained in contact with the Department of Natural Resources, tow company, and the contractor cleaning up the hazardous materials, even when off-duty.

Congratulations to Gary for the outstanding example he’s set for his co-workers throughout the Department of Public Safety!

View the video of the March 2019 Employee of the Month ceremonies here.

February

Non-Sworn Employee of the Month

February 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month

Patti Tye
Administrative Office Support Assistant
State Emergency Management Agency

Patti Tye, an Administrative Office Support Assistant at the State Emergency Management Agency, has been selected as the Department of Public Safety's February 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month.

Patti, who is assigned to the Missouri Emergency Response Commission, was chosen for her “get-it-done” attitude and problem-solving abilities.

Federal law requires many businesses and facilities that handle hazardous materials to file an annual Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory called a Tier II Report. They must be filed in the online system by March 1 to provide first responders and the public with information about potential hazards.

To reduce past confusion about the Tier II online reporting process, Patti went to work and wrote in-depth, step-by-step filing instructions, including visuals. She then worked to create video tutorials, using her extensive knowledge of the system to walk users through the entire process. Patti appeared onscreen as part of two instructional videos and assisted with final production – one for first-time filers and another for returning users.

In the past, the MERC has been inundated with questions and issues as Tier II reporters attempted to complete the online reporting process. This year, because of Patti’s efforts, call volume dropped dramatically. The video tutorials also allowed the MERC team to focus its efforts on customer service, and meant the MERC was better able to serve Missourians.

Congratulations to Patti for the outstanding example she’s set for her co-workers throughout the Department of Public Safety!


Sworn Employee of the Month

February 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month

Ashley Klempke
Trooper
Missouri State Highway Patrol

Ashley Klempke, a Trooper with the Missouri State Highway Patrol, has been selected as the Department of Public Safety's February 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month.

Ashley, who is a road trooper in central Missouri’s Troop F, was chosen for the determination, initiative and compassion with which she approaches her responsibilities as a law enforcement officer and protector of the public.

In the early morning hours of October 2018, Ashley responded to a report of two young girls walking along a highway in Cole County. The girls were dressed only in pajamas and had no shoes. While other agencies were skeptical of the girls’ allegations of long-term abuse, Ashley insisted on conducting a thorough investigation, including a medical evaluation.

The medical evaluations supported the girls’ claims of severe abuse, as did forensic interviews and a search warrant executed at their residence. As a result of Ashley’s effort, a total of six children were placed in protective custody and both parents were criminally charged.

Ashley carried out a very thorough investigation, including 16 interviews and the execution of multiple search warrants. If not for Ashley’s dedication, perseverance and compassion, the young victims would still be subjected to abuse.

Ashley’s pursuit of justice in this case also led to the Missouri State Troopers’ Association “adopting” the two girls for Christmas. They enjoyed a pizza party and donated presents for the holidays.

Congratulations to Ashley for the outstanding example she’s set for her co-workers throughout the Department of Public Safety!

*Named Missouri State Employee of the Month for March 2019

View the video of the February 2019 Employee of the Month ceremonies here.

January

Non-Sworn Employee of the Month

January 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month, Darin Dorris

Daren Dorris
Maintenance Technician
Missouri Veterans Commission

Daren Dorris, a maintenance technician with the Department of Public Safety's Missouri Veterans Commission, has been selected as the department's January 2019 Non-Sworn Employee of the Month.

Daren, who works at the St. Louis Missouri Veterans Home, was selected for his outstanding work ethic, leadership and "do-it-all" abilities as a maintenance department technician. He has demonstrated proficiency in many areas of maintenance at the St. Louis Home, including plumbing, floor installation, painting, and wall repairs.

Recently after the St. Louis Home sustained tornado damage, Daren quickly went to work – securing shingles, ridge caps, and installing a network of tarps as a stopgap measure to prevent further damage to more than 40 areas of the roof at the facility.

Daren also frequently comes to work outside normal working hours to complete essential repairs. He has conducted after-hours repairs to the kitchen area which prevented downtime to the dietary department. He also worked late nights to test fire suppression systems and participate as a member of the wheelchair audit team to ensure Veterans are both safe and as comfortable as possible.

Daren has been an employee in the maintenance department at the Missouri Veterans Home – St. Louis since 2005.

Congratulations to Daren for the outstanding example he’s set for his co-workers throughout the Department of Public Safety!


Sworn Employee of the Month

January 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month, David Johnson

David Johnson
Trooper
Missouri State Highway Patrol

David L. Johnson, a trooper with the Department of Public Safety's Missouri State Highway Patrol — Troop D, has been selected as the department's January 2019 Sworn Employee of the Month.

In June 2018, David attended specialized training involving interdiction methods to protect children. Within the next three months, he arrested five suspects for charges involving possession of child pornography, failing to register as a sex offender, and violating terms of their sentence.

In one case, David stopped a car for following too close on Missouri Highway 13 in Polk County. His interviewing technique during the traffic stop led to the arrest of the driver for possessing child pornography and failure to register as a sex offender.

In another incident, while off-duty with his family, he observed suspicious behavior by a subject in a vehicle at the same park. After he returned to work, David followed up with the registered owner, identified him as the driver of the vehicle, and found he was a registered sex offender who was restricted from being at a public park. This same suspect had initially failed to list his vehicle in his sex offender registry information.

Since June, the Patrol has conducted the 16-hour Interdiction for the Protection of Children training in all nine troops. It concentrates on identifying signs during a traffic stop that a child might be in danger. A total of 307 troopers have completed the training. Since being trained, troopers have initiated a total of 22 investigations.

David recognizes there are many nuances to this type of investigative method and continues to refine his technique.

Congratulations to David for the outstanding example he’s set for his co-workers throughout the Department of Public Safety!