Today, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced that Luis Bixler has been selected as the new director for the Dane County Department of Public Safety Communications (911).
A former supervisor for the Dane County 911 Center, in 2009, Bixler was named 911 Telecommunicator of the Year for the State of Wisconsin by the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials and National Emergency Number Association. He also served as Secretary for the Wisconsin Association of Public Safety Communications Officials and as Public Safety Communications Center liaison to the Madison Police Department.
“We are excited to welcome Luis back to the Dane County family as the new director of our 911 Center,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “Luis has unmatched experience in the field of public safety communications and a true drive to give back to his community. I look forward to working with Luis in this new role and know he will serve our 911 Center well.”
During his time as Public Safety Communications Supervisor for the Dane County 911 Center, Bixler coordinated dispatch and call taking personnel in appropriate responses to public requests for emergency assistance for fire, police, and medical assistance in Dane County. The 911 Center dispatches 68 Dane County police, fire, and emergency medical services agencies and receives over 400,000 calls per year.
“I am extremely excited to be a part of the Dane County Public Safety Communications team and look forward towards building an inclusive culture with feedback from the staff, stakeholders, and community,” said Bixler. “I am very grateful to County Executive Parisi and his leadership team for providing this opportunity to me, it truly is a great honor.”
Bixler was born in northern Mexico and immigrated to the United States when he was 5 years old. His mother brought the family to the US to provide opportunities that would help them achieve more than they could in Mexico. According to Bixler, his family always considered themselves fortunate to have this gift, learning to speak English and being taught the importance of being a good citizen was something that was stressed in their home, but so was maintaining their cultural identity, experiences, and beliefs.
Bixler obtained his US citizenship when he turned 17 years old and joined the US Army shortly thereafter to serve his country and pursue further educational opportunities. The experience of growing up melding two different cultures instilled the importance of diversity in Bixler and continues to be a central pillar of his beliefs.
Bixler says he was able to take advantage of opportunities presented to him professionally, personally, and with education—including using his military service to obtain a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Wisconsin—Madison. One of his guiding principles is centered in the Wisconsin Idea, in which he feels public service is his moral obligation. Just as Bixler’s mother was able to provide a better life for him, he feels he must use the opportunities he has received to improve the quality of life for those in his community.
Bixler currently resides in Madison, Wisconsin with his wife, Skelly, and two daughters, Ruby and Eva, whom he calls his support network and team. Bixler’s first official day as director of Dane County Public Safety Communications will be November 22nd.