by: Submitted photo - Dispatcher Norman Lucei, left, and Ken Lydy, assistant fire management officer, display awards.

   The small Warm Springs fire dispatch unit won a big award last week at a regional conference in Seaside.
   Representatives Ken Lydy, assistant fire management officer, and lead dispatcher Norman Lucei, who is the only dispatcher in the office for most of the year, picked up the Outstanding Unit Award for 2006 "for significant contributions to the Northwest area coordination activities."
   "It was a great honor for us," said Lydy, noting that the Warm Springs unit represents both the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. "For them to single us out really made us proud."
   The Warm Springs award was the first given to a BIA dispatch unit since 1992, Lydy said.
   "We're just a small operation compared with some of them that have as many as 32 people in summertime," Lucei explained. "I was stunned when they called our name."
   The annual award is given out by the Northwest Coordination Center in Portland, which represents all wildland fire agencies in the Northwest.
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