Pam Opoka, ENP, is the Public Safety Training Coordinator and Peer Support Program Planner at Mid-America Regional Council (MARC). She has over 25 years of experience in Public Safety and has a master’s degree in Public Administration. She has 15 years of experience under the dispatcher headset and 10 years on the other side of the screens—working on the Administrative side of 911--with the Geographic Information System (GIS) mapping database and Public Safety training program planning. Pam is active in University Research projects and workgroups within National Emergency Number Association (NENA). She is currently the co-chair of NENA’s Wellness Committee Peer Support Work Group, which is responsible for developing an Information Document on Peer Support Team Development, Implementation and Oversight-regardless of the agency’s budget.
Pam has written many articles and has been featured in several magazines, podcasts, webinars and conferences. She has received numerous awards for her leadership work to include creating the first roving Regional 911 Peer Support Team and for creating the first cross-disciplined (Police, Fire, EMS, Dispatch) Commander Level Peer Support Team; believed to be the only one of its kind in the United States. Both teams have over 50 members each and continue to grow with sub-committees within each team to help with the workload. She has fostered many partnerships and collaborations in the mental health and wellness field and continues to fight for better resources, training and opportunities for our public safety family.