Ask Me Why I Care
Public Service Stories | Public Safety
This edition of Public Service Stories highlights the careers of professionals working in the sphere of public safety. These individuals have committed themselves to assuring the well-being of their fellow citizens on the city, state and national level, working tirelessly to create and maintain a stable environment in which everyone can live freely and without fear.
Does being a part of our justice system interest you? Is putting out fires--literally or figuratively--a match for your talent? Are you the type of person who has a clear sense of right and wrong yet still has an open mind? Is the word bystander not a part of your vocabulary? If you answered YES to any of those questions, you must watch these videos. They just might change your life.
Edward A. Flynn - current police chief in Milwaukee. When this interview was recorded by the National Academy of Public Administration in 2005, he was secretary of public safety for Massachusetts. Did you know that the 17,000 separate law enforcement agencies in the U.S. make us much more vulnerable to terrorists than countries with more centralized systems? This video explains why.
Troy Jellison - fire captain/advanced EMT for the El Dorado, Kansas, Fire Department. Interview recorded in 2014. Watch this video for a down-to-earth look at what a fireman does and why he does it.
Valerie Lemmie - director of exploratory research for the Kettering Foundation. Former city manager for the cities of Petersburg, Virginia and Dayton and Cincinnati, Ohio. This interview was recorded by the National Academy of Public Administration in 2006. How does a local government effectively respond to a community’s concern about police practices? This video provides a good example.
Suggested Assignments for Students
Review videos for one or more of the following (Don't worry--if it's not covered in the video, just say so):
- What did you find inspirational/admirable about each of the speakers?
- While all of the interviewees may not have told us why they chose a career in public service, what do their words indicate that they care about?
- What is the content of the public service work they’ve done?
- How does their work fit into public service?
- What is the role of education in their career choice/career path?
- Where did each feel they made a difference in the lives of others?
- What values led them to public service and/or were reinforced by their experiences in public services?
- Some of these videos were recorded in 2005/2006. What parts of their content sound current?
- What surprised you about any of these individuals and their stories?
- Which speaker did you like best and why?
- What are your take-aways from these interviews?
- What are the common threads in all the videos?
A Special Thank You
UNO thanks the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) for their generosity in providing the video interviews of Ed Flynn and Valerie Lemmie for use in this project.