Kristin Dailey grew up in Eugene, Oregon, with a mother who worked for 30 years at the Eugene Police Department as a 911 dispatcher. Upon moving to Baker City, Dailey would follow in her mother’s footsteps, beginning her career in dispatch.
“One of my friends in Baker worked for law enforcement and she talked me into applying for the job,” explained Dailey. “I was previously a customer service agent for an airline, so in a lot of ways, this position was a natural fit.”
Dailey began the rigorous training to become a dispatcher, which she equates to including many of the same “perquisites for being a mom,” like using “repetitive persistence” to get the answers needed from the person in distress. Often, dispatchers can be the difference between life and death for people in crisis situations. For Dailey, she says her experience as a mother and her patient and calming presence helped her be successful.
“As dispatchers, we have the ability to provide the aid necessary to help people while they wait for first-responders,” said Dailey. “In my 20 years as a dispatcher, I have aided several people in providing CPR to a distressed individual while they waited for medical teams to arrive. It’s rewarding to know that we play a part in saving lives.”
Dailey raised four children while working graveyards, managing to attend nearly all athletic and school events, cook dinner and help her children with homework. This wasn’t always easy, especially when life threw her family a curveball: Her son was diagnosed with leukemia.
“It was challenging, but I was able to schedule my work around his treatment schedule,” said Dailey. “The outreach and support from the office, my fellow employees and the community was overwhelming.”
Dailey’s son passed away and shortly after, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. The Baker County Sheriff’s Office and the community rallied to support her by donating paid leave and hosting fundraisers to help with the medical costs.
“As a mother, and a daughter of someone who worked in law enforcement, I have always been proud of my job,” said Dailey. “Law enforcement as a career is rewarding, but in times of hardship, it becomes a second family.”
In Baker County, members of law enforcement are family, friends and truly an integral piece of the community.
“We would be in this business if we didn’t genuinely care about the people in our community,” said Dailey. “In fact, we received an emergency call from a young boy, so a deputy went to the house only to find that the boy had woken up while his family was out feeding their cattle. The boy wanted to join them, but he couldn’t get dressed by himself, so he had called 911. The deputy helped him and sent him out to join his family.”
Dailey couldn’t be more proud to be a mother and raise four children while being a part of the Baker County Sheriff’s Office, which has helped to shape her life is numerous ways.