Campus: Cal Poly, Pomona -- August 22, 2000

Carolyn Forrester, Longtime Chemistry Department Member, Honored With Govenor's Safety Award

Carolyn Forrester, an instructional support technician in the chemistry department at Cal Poly Pomona, has been selected to receive a Governor's Employee Safety Award for 1999.

A La Verne resident who has been a member of the university's chemistry department since 1985, Forrester will be honored at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 25, during a special ceremony at the Sacramento Convention Center.

Forrester, who serves as stockroom manager for the entire freshman laboratory program in chemistry, earned distinction for safety work above and beyond that included in her job description. She volunteered to be a building marshal for the university's Emergency Management Plan; on her own time attended and paid for Community Emergency Response Team training; scheduled quarterly educational programs to increase preparedness skills of college emergency personnel; recruited a student to help enhance emergency evacuation plans; and obtained college funding to provide family-band radios that allow campus buildings to stay in contact during emergency situations.

"I was really shocked when I got the letter from Sacramento. They'd told me I'd been nominated but I really didn't expect to get it," says Forrester. "All the people I recruit to help with safety are volunteers, too, so they all deserve a part of this award."

According to Simon Bernau, dean of the College of Science, simply proclaiming the importance of safety isn't enough. The challenge is to constantly maintain a truly safe environment in which exposure to risk is kept to an absolute minimum.

"This requires a cadre of devoted staff professionals who are constantly on the alert for possible hazards, prepared to deal immediately with emergency situations and are both willing and able to train others," says Bernau. "Carolyn Forrester epitomizes these essential qualities in everything she does."

This marks the fifth time in 10 years that an individual/department from Cal Poly Pomona has been honored as a Governor's Employee Safety Award winner. Past university honorees include the College of Environmental Design; Mark Bailey, department engineer, electrical & computer engineering department; Noel Vernon, associate dean, College of Environmental Design; and the university housing services' emergency preparedness team.

It is Forrester's drive and dedication that earned her total support across campus.

"She's a dream for someone like me," says Debbi McFall, emergency services coordinator in the university's department of public safety. "She's an amazing individual who cares about the college and the entire campus."

Since 1980 the Governor's Employee Safety Awards have recognized individuals and groups who distinguish themselves through outstanding safety and health service to the state during the previous year. Awards are presented for lifesaving, response to hazardous events and developing safety programs that are not part of an individual or group's normal duties.

For additional information, contact Debbi McFall in Cal Poly Pomona's department of public safety at (909) 869-6981 or the State Consumer Services Office at (916) 653-2636.

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