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Posted on: May 30, 2023

Caldwell Receives City Strive Award for Safety

A City Strive coin in a wooden holder that says "Above & Beyond"

Dial-A-Ride driver Ken Caldwell with City Manager Brad Kaye and his DART supervisors and managers

(Left to right: Dial-A-Ride Supervisor Rod Merillat, City Manager Brad Kaye, Driver Ken Caldwell, and Dial-A-Ride Manager Amy Bidwell)

May 30, 2023 – The City of Midland is excited to announce that it has recognized Dial-A-Ride driver Ken Caldwell as its latest recipient of a City Strive Award for his dedication to safety in the workplace. The award was presented during a department meeting earlier this month.

Caldwell received the Safety First Award, which recognizes an individual for consistently exhibiting and promoting safe work practices and encouraging employee health and wellness by following safety policies, utilizing appropriate protective equipment, and striving to reduce risk and improve safety in the workplace. 

He was nominated by supervisor Rod Merillat and manager Amy Bidwell for his  extensive record of safe, compassionate driving for Dial-A-Ride: 

“In 2023, Ken will log his 20th year as a part-time bus driver for Dial-A-Ride. While we only have data saved from the past 10 years, we can estimate from that data that Ken has driven well over 150,000 miles through Midland and logged over 10,800 hours on the road during his 20-year Dial-A-Ride career. During this time, Ken has not had a single at-fault safety incident.  

Over the past 10 years as Ken's supervisor, I have had the opportunity both to ride with him on his bus and to review camera footage of Ken in action behind the wheel. Ken is highly attentive to his passengers’ needs and adjusts his driving accordingly. If he has a passenger on board in a wheelchair, he will reduce his speed and be careful on his turns so as not to cause the person undue anxiety. Ken does not allow pressures of the day to influence his driving. He stays calm and collected at all times on the road. Ken is a consummate professional, adjusting the heat/air conditioning to best serve his passengers and setting them at ease that he will get them safely where they need to go. It's easy for Ken to "drive" under the radar because of his quiet competence, but as he approaches his 20-year anniversary, we want to loudly celebrate him with this award he is much deserving of!”

 Ken Caldwell has worked for the City since 2003. 

“As a municipal employee, ensuring the safety and security of our residents is a top priority,” said City Manager Brad Kaye. “Ken’s 20-year commitment to providing a safe, reliable, and comfortable experience for Dial-A-Ride passengers is an incredible achievement and we are incredibly grateful for his service to the City of Midland every day.” 

For more information on the City Strive Award program or to submit a nomination for a deserving City employee, please visit www.cityofmidlandmi.gov/citystrive

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