"Each year Texans Caring for Texans honors employees from state agencies across the upper 26 counties in the Texas Panhandle for their efforts that positively impact their communities. The event was created in 1996 by former State Representative David Swinford as a way to say, “Thank you for all the work that you do,” to outstanding Texas employees.
Dr. Walter Wendler, WTAMU president, served as keynote speaker for this year’s recognition ceremony. He spoke on servant leadership and how the “heart comes to life when we attend to the needs of others,” while also expressing appreciation to the honorees for their dedicated service to the State of Texas and to our region.
This year, two Texas Department of Transportation employees from the Amarillo District were among those recognized at the annual ceremony, held Aug. 10 on the West Texas A&M University campus in Canyon – Laura Rogers, an office manager in TxDOT’s Stratford maintenance section and Janet Williams, a supervisor for TxDOT’s Hansford County maintenance section. Both were nominated for this recognition by Dumas Area Engineer Corky Neukam.
Rogers, who joined TxDOT three years ago, was nominated for this honor for her service as a paramedic in Sherman County for 16 years. She is one of five paramedics supporting the Sherman County EMS. A typical call out could range from going to a nursing home and checking someone’s blood pressure or tending to minor injuries to transporting people to nearby medical facilities or responding to traffic accidents.
In addition to her career with TxDOT and volunteer efforts with the Sherman County EMS, Rogers is the mother to four children. In fact, as the mother of a handicapped teenaged daughter, Laura was also instrumental in encouraging TxDOT to install a large, permanent changing bench in the rest area in Donley County to help special needs that some travelers experience. The suggestion was so well-received that TxDOT expects to install these benches at all its rest areas.
Williams began her TxDOT career 20 years ago as an office manager and worked her way up to her current role as supervisor. She was nominated for the Texans Caring for Texans award for her volunteer work as a paramedic for the last 12 years and as a volunteer firefighter for the last 10 years. Williams is one of only three paramedics supporting the Hansford County EMS on every 911 call. She is certified to teach CPR, First Aid and AED classes. Janet also is certified to teach Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Pediatric Advanced Cardiac Life support.
Both Rogers and Williams appreciate the ability to serve in these volunteer capacities afforded through their careers with TxDOT. Williams says that if it wasn’t for the flexibility offered to her by TxDOT, Hansford County would not have fire or EMS responders and, for that, she is grateful. Williams has enjoyed her career with TxDOT so much that she convinced her son, Lance, to become part of the TxDOT family, too. He is a transportation engineer, recently promoted to Pampa assistant area engineer.
“Our District is blessed with several employees who are constantly giving back to the communities in which they serve,” says District Engineer Brian Crawford. “What an honor it is to have two outstanding employees from our district recognized for answering the call of duty both on the job with TxDOT and in their communities.”
Texans Caring for Texans committee members are volunteers that are committed to coordinating this annual recognition program to outstanding state employees."
-Texas Department of Transportation