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CAP Blog - Water Ways and Power Lines
CAP Employee Focus: Joseph Gaylord, Protective Services Manager
This is the second in a series of profiles regarding the professionals who are responsible for Central Arizona Project’s operations.
In a nutshell, what do you do for CAP?
I supervise CAP’s Protective Services department. Protective Services is made up of law enforcement officers and support staff members who have the responsibility of protecting employees, assets and overall security of the canal infrastructure. The officers are all certified law enforcement officers, which gives our employees a great resource in times of emergency. They have full power of arrest like any other officer.
How did you get into this line of work?
I started my career as a jailer in a county in Minnesota and then went to work for a city in Minnesota. I moved to Chandler in 1982 after investigating a 30-car accident in the middle of winter. The ink in my pen froze, so I had to complete the report in pencil. I then sat back and told myself if I was going to do this line of work, I would have to move to a warmer climate. I did just that and was allowed to move into several assignments within the Chandler police force. I retired from there in 2010 as an Assistant Chief and started to work for CAP the next day. I was also elected to the governing board of the Federal Bureau of Investigations National Academy Associates and will be the president in 2015. This allows me to have a very good working relationship with all departments within the state and even federal law enforcement throughout the United States and the world.
How does the work you do on a daily basis affect our water supply?
The supply has to be protected and we offer that protection – as the eyes and ears patrolling issues along the canal. Our agents are out in the field all day, every day, looking for security issues, protecting the employees and monitoring CAP’s assets.
What are some of the technical advances that allow you to do your job more effectively and efficiently?
We have several alarms and cameras along the canal that feed into the main compound. The cameras are monitored 24/7 by a contract security firm that calls the agents during the day and me after hours, if necessary.
What's the most gratifying part of your job?
Seeing that people trust us and will call an agent or myself with any concerns before they have the opportunity to become bigger concerns. The agents here are very experienced officers and it is a pleasure every day to be around such professional people. Plus, the staff members within our unit are outstanding – they really make customer service a top priority.
What’s the most unusual thing that has happened along the canal?
In this line of work, you can imagine that we see our fair share of unusual things. But recently, we had a heart-warming experience when we rescued a dog from Check 22 (between Scottsdale Road and Tatum Blvd.). The dog was stranded on the backside of the check. The structure gate was raised about a foot, which gave two of our agents enough space to reach the dog with a snare and pull him to safety. The woman who’d called us works with a rescue organization and was able to place the dog in a loving home. It’s days like that when our job is particularly rewarding!
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Meeting the challenges of the structural deficit, population growth and climate change
Central Arizona Project is Arizona’s largest source of renewable water supplies—providing 500 billion gallons of water each year to residents, businesses and farms in central and southern Arizona. CAP’s impact goes beyond quenching thirst—it’s also an economic engine for the state, generating $100 billion in benefit each year.
BOR Calls for Water Conservation Proposals
Know of a water conservation project that could help in drought times? The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) has announced it is now soliciting water conservation project ideas from Colorado River contractors and tribes in Arizona, California and Nevada.
Shortages, Pressure on Coal Plants Will Push Cost of Water Up
The following “Into the Mind” interview with CAP Board President Pam Pickard ran in the Saturday, Sept. 26 edition of the Arizona Republic. We’re reprinting it here so CAP News readers have a chance to see it, just in case they missed it in the paper.