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Coconino County Search and Rescue and Community Emergency Response Team receives GEMS Awards


The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office was honored by having its Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and one of its Search and Rescue members, Dennis Gill, recognized by the Flagstaff GEMS Citywide Volunteer Recognition group, which was presented by the Civic Service Institute at NAU.

The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office CERT Team was awarded the GEMs 2020 “Civic Organization of the Year “award. CERT was recognized for its effort and work during the Museum Fire during the summer of 2019. CERT provided over 40 volunteers during the emergency working in support of multiple local government agencies. CERT worked in the Call Center taking over 1500+ calls keeping residence and visitors informed on the latest information about the fire, closures and restrictions. CERT supported City and County Law Enforcement assisting with contacting residences in the fire threatened areas during pre-evacuation, evacuation and re -entry stages. CERT also assisted with neighborhood notifications for community meetings going door to door in flood threatened areas passing out flyers informing residence of upcoming meetings.

The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office CERT team has been supported and sponsored by the Sheriff’s Office since 2004 and comprised of 140+ members spread throughout the county.

Dennis Gill a 36-year member of the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue Team was recognized as the GEMs 2020 “Volunteer of the Year “. Dennis over his career has responded to over 1000 missions and impacted hundreds of lives. Over Dennis’s Career he has been the leader of the Technical Rescue, Dennis was one of the first members of the “Northern Arizona Interagency Helicopter Rescue Team”. Dennis also served multiple terms on the Coconino County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Board of Directors where he helped to manage funds, develop and facilitate training to help improve the capabilities of the team. His expertise and knowledge is counted on frequently to help manage and respond to incidents around the county.


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