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Hale, Pepper Named Recipients of Operation Lifesaver 2014 National Safety Awards

By Operation Lifesaver


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., May 16, 2014 – Railroad safety nonprofit Operation Lifesaver (OL, gave national safety awards highlighting individual achievements in preventing deaths and injuries around tracks and trains to Ron Hale of North Little Rock, Arkansas, and Allen Pepper of Starkville, Mississippi. Hale received the F. Tom Roberts Memorial Volunteer Award for his prodigious rail safety education efforts; Pepper received the OL Champion Award for being a champion of rail safety education in the law enforcement and first responder communities over his career. The awards were presented at a dinner during the Operation Lifesaver Leadership Conference here. 

“We are proud to present these prestigious awards to Ron Hale and Allen Pepper, honoring them for their dedication to saving lives on behalf of Operation Lifesaver,” said Operation Lifesaver, Inc. President and CEO Joyce Rose. “These individuals truly exemplify the passion and creativity of our volunteers and partners.”

Hale, a retired Union Pacific employee, has been an Operation Lifesaver volunteer for more than 19 years. In 2013 alone, Hale conducted 547 presentations, traveling almost 14,000 miles, and reached an audience of 23,150 people in the state of Arkansas.

Pepper, recently retired from Kansas City Southern Railway and from a position on the OL Board of Directors, has held a wide range of safety roles in his career, including locomotive engineer, railroad special agent, Mississippi highway patrol officer, and railroad public safety official.  He became involved with Operation Lifesaver in the 1990s, lending his expertise to Operation Lifesaver programs both nationally and in six states. He has been a champion of rail safety education for the law enforcement and first responder communities, and has been instrumental in shaping Operation Lifesaver’s Grade Crossing and Collision Investigation and Rail Safety for Emergency Responder programs.

Eight additional nominees for the F. Tom Roberts award were also recognized at the dinner:  Earl Roider of Stockton, California; Alex Goff of Newington, Connecticut; George Bollinger of Jacksonville, Florida; Darlene Osterhaus of Topeka, Kansas; Thomas Schmidt of New Orleans, Louisiana; Alan Stouder of Pioneer, Ohio; Eddie Kroutter of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; and Randy Mulkey of Cheyenne, Wyoming.  

Started in 1994 in memory of a man who dedicated the majority of his life to reducing or eliminating death and injuries along railroad tracks, the F. Tom Roberts Memorial Award honors an individual who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to safety in the number of volunteer hours committed to Operation Lifesaver annually, the nature of volunteer activities performed, and other personal contributions to the Operation Lifesaver program.

Established in 2010 to recognize people inside or outside of the Operation Lifesaver program who advance OL’s community safety goals, the OL Champion Award honors an individual who through their work has contributed significantly to the mission of Operation Lifesaver in the past two years, in any of the three “E” components of rail safety:  education, enforcement or engineering.


Hale, Pepper Named Recipients of Operation Lifesaver 2014 National Safety Awards at #OLILeadership Conference

Congrats to #OperationLifesaver Safety Award Recipients Allen Pepper and Ron Hale!

We are so proud of our F. Tom Roberts Volunteer Award Nominees and Winners! #railsafety

About Operation Lifesaver

Operation Lifesaver's mission is to end collisions, deaths and injuries at highway-rail grade crossings and along railroad rights of way. A national network of trained volunteers provides free presentations on rail safety. Learn more at Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.


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