Deanne Owen SMALLLLLLLLA familiar face, and voice, has returned to the Communications Department of the Benton Police Department. Deanne Owen, who previously worked at the BNPD Communications Department from 2012 to 2014, recently returned and has been promoted to the Communications Department Supervisor position.

The story of how a girl from Los Angeles, California first became interested in the dispatching field, to twice working at the Benton Communications Department, is filled with hard work, a positive attitude, and a dedication to helping people. Though Deanne Owen is not an advocate for anyone to pick up the phone and prank call any 911 dispatch center, that is precisely what she did as a very young girl. It was the consequence of that action that sparked her youthful, inquisitive mind to the roles of dispatchers, firefighters, law enforcement officers, and medical crews.

“The first responders showed up at my house so fast,” she said. “I thought that was something magical. I ended up getting in so much trouble from my mom though – because I ended up calling them back (after they left).”

At the age of 17, Deanne Owen and family packed their belongings and moved from L.A. to Benton, Arkansas. Thoughts of helping people traveled with her too. By January 2009, Deanne Owen was hired at MEMS ambulance service in Little Rock as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) and EMD (Emergency Medical Dispatcher). She later was hired as a part-time employee for MedTran at Saline Memorial Hospital in Benton.

In fact, when she hired as a full-time dispatcher for the BNPD Communications Department in 2012, she kept her positions at MEMS and MedTran. Deanne Owen also was a volunteer firefighter and a CPR Instructor. In 2014, Deanne Owen was given a new opportunity as a flight coordinator for Med-Flight.

More than 2 years ago, Deanne Owen moved to Arizona where she worked for American Medical Response as a dispatcher for ambulance and fire services covering rural areas in the northwest part of the state. Then four months ago, she moved back to Benton.

“When I moved back, I knew I wanted to continue my career as a dispatcher,” Deanne Owen said. “And I knew that I wanted to work again at the Benton Communications Department full-time. Number one, I live in this community and I want to serve the people in this community to the best of my capabilities. I wasn’t born and raised here, but this is my home and it’s the home for my kids.”

She is confident that her unique path and experience as a dispatcher, volunteer firefighter, and working for several ambulance services, as well as air-ambulance, will better serve this community.

“I want to take that experience and knowledge, and use it to train other dispatchers to be their best,” Deanne Owen said. “I believe having the experience in the different fields, and knowing in advance the resources first responders may need – before they even request it – will utilize their life saving skills and response time more efficiently.”

She also continues to teach CPR classes, which puts more people in the public with a life-saving skill. It is that desire to serve, she said, that keeps her enthusiasm high as she works tirelessly.

“I like communicating with the (911) callers, and more than anything, I like helping people,” Deanne Owen said. “No matter how small their problem may seem to anyone else, it is that caller’s worst day. They are calling 911, it’s a bad time for them at that moment. I really enjoying answering the phone, gathering the bits and pieces of information, and putting together that puzzle toward getting them the appropriate help they need.”