Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Beltrami County Citizens recognized by the Minnesota Sheriff's Association as "Volunteers of the year"


BEMIDJI, MN: At ceremonies held on June 6, 2021 during the Minnesota Sheriff's Association (MSA) Summer Conference, Beltrami County residents Dr. Ralph D. Morris M.D, M.P.H, and Dr. Donna L. Morris RN, DrPH, were recognized by the MSA as the "MSA 2020 Sheriff's Volunteers of the Year".

The Sheriff's Volunteer of the Year Award is presented to the civilian who volunteers his or her time in support of the Office of Sheriff and community performing in such a manner this is far and above the average over a sustained period of time.

Ralph and Donna were nominated by Sheriff Ernie Beitel for their voluntary support to the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office and our community as members of our Emergency Operations Team. Beltrami County Sheriff's Office activated its Emergency Operations Center in early March, 2019 and partnered with Beltrami County Public Health to aid in bringing our community, local government, medical community and our schools to most appropriately prepare and respond to the COVID-10 pandemic.

Ralph and Donna, prior to retirement, worked extensively in preventive medicine and public health preparedness in responding to disasters at the local, state and federal level. Their service began with the Sheriff's Office and the Community with first, twice daily briefings, which turned into more meetings and then countless hours in zoom meeting to help prepare the Sheriff's Office, community and our jail for the pandemic.

Countless documents and easy to follow algorithms were created by them to provide guidance to our community days, if not weeks, ahead of the Minnesota Department of Health or the Minnesota Department of Corrections.

But one of the greatest things that Ralph and Donna offered-was peace of mind to our Sheriff's Office Staff. They were only a phone call away, day or night to bring peace of mind, reassurance, and guidance to them.

From March 2020, until they were nominated on September 11, 2020, Ralph and Donna had donated a combined 775 hours to your Sheriff's Office and our community.


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