Kevin R Shook is the Communications Director, Emergency Management Coordinator, and Addressing Coordinator for Transylvania County. He was born and raised in Buncombe County. Through volunteering with the Leicester Fire and Rescue Department, he gained a desire to pursue a career in Emergency Services. After achieving certification in the Emergency Medical field, he worked at and managed a local Ambulance Service in Asheville before transitioning into a position with Buncombe County Emergency Services. In 1992, he moved to Transylvania County, accepting a position with Transylvania County as the new Communications Director and establishing the first Communications Department for Transylvania County. The duties of the department have expanded over the years and now encompass the Addressing functions for all of Transylvania County as well as the Emergency Management functions for Transylvania County. He has one daughter and two grandsons that live locally.
Q & A
Q: What are your job duties for Transylvania County?
- Supervises rotating shifts of telecommunicators who handle communications and dispatching calls for law enforcement, and multiple rescue, fire, and EMS services as well as non-emergency departments of county government including but not limited to: county school system, county transportation, animal control, Department of Social Services, Building Department, Health Department, Solid Waste, Maintenance Department; plans and assigns work; hires, trains, and provides performance coaching and evaluation for department staff; develops work schedules; assures communications center is always staffed.
- Coordinates the provision of services and changes in service with police, sheriff, and other law enforcement agencies, County EMS and volunteer rescue departments, and multiple volunteer fire departments.
- Develops and administers department budget; procures equipment and supplies; researches, plans, and coordinates with telephone companies and vendors upgrades in equipment such as but not limited to 911 system both wire line and wireless, computer aided dispatch system, geographical systems interfaced with 911 systems, all county telephonic devices, and other electronic systems; coordinates and participates in installation, maintenance and repair of equipment at a technician level.
- Coordinates the installation of communication systems for both data and voice of all county facilities. Coordinates the installation of all telephonic devices of all county facilities as well as maintains the systems once installation is complete.
- Establishes and promotes community awareness for effective use of emergency communications services such as 911.
- Establishes and administers departmental policies and procedures; tracks statistical information, evaluates service delivery.
- Serves as telecommunicator on a shift when needed; operates DCI system, 911 system and computer-aided dispatch.
- Supervises the establishment and updating on indexes of telephone numbers, addresses, location directions, and emergency and disaster procedures.
- Participates on various emergency planning efforts; may perform on-scene communications assistance.
- Participates as a member of the Emergency Management Team with primary responsibilities being day-to-day logistics with the State Office of Emergency Management as well as electronics support for equipment used by the team. Responds according to need for field operations requiring on scene Emergency Management assistance. Must maintain knowledge and training in all areas of Emergency Management for field response.
- Oversees and maintains the Addressing Division, which covers the county as well as the City of Brevard, and the Town of Rosman. Oversees GIS hardware and software system including determine system configuration, supervises part time staff, maintains data and generates maps and other products from GIS database per specific request. Oversees and installs Street name signs throughout the county.
Q: What makes Transylvania County so special to you?
Transylvania County has special people in the community. They are very self reliant. I attend meetings and training sessions in parts of the state where my counter parts always have to make preparations for citizens that are not prepared for when disaster strikes. I can say that since 1992, during major events, even though we had shelters open, very few people have come to them. It has to be extremely bad. When I have asked citizens in the county about this, they say this is the way we were raised. You have to be prepared.
Q: In which ways do you hope to improve Transylvania County?
To continue to improve the 911 technology and services that will ensure an efficient and effective delivery of requested critical services to the citizens of our county when they are at their most vulnerable point in their life and expect only the best.
Q: Do you have any favorite things that you like to do in Transylvania County?
Enjoy mountain biking and exploring the trails.