Training and Touring the Utah Capitol Grounds

Earlier this morning, my friend “Mike” dropped me a note chastising me for not posting a blog last night.  After apologizing to him, I shared with him, and now you, the fact that we’ve been very busy with our classes this week and yesterday was no exception.  Yesterday, we began our second class, CERT Train-the-Trainer, which is a three-day class.  It was a bit different for us yesterday as we relocated our class from our earlier auditorium location in the State Office Building over to the operations floor of the state’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) which is in the Capitol Building.  This relocation was a one-day transition, and today (and tomorrow) we’re back in our normal auditorium setting.

As is typical to what we normally see, most students seemed to enjoy the Train-the-Trainer class more than the Program Manager class.  Most of us have more fun working as an instructor (helping people learn) vs developing and managing programs (program/project management).  Of course, there are some (me included) that absolutely enjoy both.  Maybe it was my corporate background, but I feel very comfortable, and enjoy, all aspects (strategic and tactical) of program development and management.  And, to be able to develop and conduct training (working with people and helping provide an environment in which to learn and be better), well it’s a perfect opportunity!

Utah SIAC 

Today we were fortunate to have Mr. Jared Terry join us to introduce a new initiative the state is kicking off for homeland security.  Jared is an Intelligence Analyst (Intern) working with the Department of Public Safety in the Utah Statewide Information and Analysis Center (SIAC)

If you aren’t familiar with the SIAC, it’s the state’s intelligence fusion center.  A fusion center is an effective and efficient mechanism to exchange information and intelligence, maximize resources, streamline operations, and improve the ability to fight crime and terrorism by analyzing data from a variety of sources.  Fusion centers have been created within state and local governments to foster both collaboration and the exchange of intelligence between law enforcement, first responders, public health, critical infrastructure (private sector), and other agencies involved in crime suppression, homeland security, and counterterrorism from all agencies and levels of government.

The Utah SIAC serves as a collaborative effort of multiple agencies that provides resources, expertise and information for analysis, with the goal of maximizing their ability to detect, prevent, investigate, and respond to criminal and terrorist activity.

Presently, the SIAC is trying to improve the awareness, ability, and willingness of Utahans to report suspicious activity to law enforcement.  In the past, general public reporting has not been as effective as what authorities would like.  To overcome this information shortfall, a new initiative is being implemented across the state.  The program is called “If you see something, say something” and is intended to encourage the general public to feel confident in reporting suspicious behavior to their local law enforcement.  In turn, there is a process in place that allows local law enforcement to share those reports with the SIAC and vice versa.

Touring the Capitol grounds

Yesterday and then again today, we had the opportunity to walk around the Capitol grounds and see some very interesting memorials there are here in tribute to significant Utahans.  I’d like to share with you some of what we saw.  I hope that you enjoy this brief tour around the Utah Capitol grounds.

The Utah State Capitol 

The Utah State Capital grounds are very beautiful and well maintained.  One observation we’ve made several times while we’ve been here is how few people there were walking around outside or even inside the buildings.  It’s very pleasant.

On the Capital grounds, there are several monuments including:

  • Mormon Battalion Monument – commemorates the sacrifices made by 500 Mormon pioneer volunteers who joined the U.S. Army during the Mexican War. The 100-foot granite and bronze monument was created by Gilbert Riswold in 1927. There are many figures chronicling different periods of the Battalion’s history – you will find “The Enlistment,” “The March,” “The Discovery of Gold in California,” and “The Arrival of the Pueblo Detachment.”
  • Harriman Memorial – The expense of building the State Capitol was supplemented by a collection of an inheritance tax upon the death of Edward Harriman, president of the Union Pacific Railroad. He had invested in a trolley car system in Salt Lake City and the tax levied on his properties was enough to give the State the fiscal ability to begin building its Capitol.
  • Civil War Memorial – This memorial honors Utahans who served and died in the Civil War. This monument was created as a part of the golden age of American public sculpture. The importance of historical awareness was emphasized in the wake of the Civil War and erecting monuments to significant historic events became a national trend.
  • Daniel Cowing Jackling – Jackling’s progressive vision of massive extraction of low-grade minerals at Brigham Canyon copper mines helped pave the way for the success of Utah’s mining industry.
  • Brigadier General Thomas L. Kane – General Kane was an indispensable help to the early settlers in Utah. He assisted pioneers as they traveled to the region and mitigated early conflicts with the federal government before the territory was made a state.
  • Martha Hughes Cannon – the first woman senator in the United States, was erected by Utah sculptor Laura Lee Stay. Cannon was elected in Utah’s first state election in November 1896. While she was a senator and prominent suffragist, Cannon held a medical degree and promoted important health policy in Utah.

Chief Massasoit

This memorial is a tribute to the Indian chief who befriended the Pilgrims after they landed in Massachusetts. It was done by prolific Utah sculptor Cyrus E. Dallin in 1921. Another one of Dallin’s notable works, “Angel Moroni,” can be seen just south of the Capitol atop a spire of a temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

Utah Law Enforcement Memorial 

As the local ABC television affiliate said in an article at the time the memorial was constructed, they are Utah heroes and a memorial on Utah’s Capitol Hill honors Utah police officers who gave their lives in the line of duty.  Three statues along with the names of Utah’s fallen officers mark the Capitol site.  The motto of the memorial here is “All give some, some give all”.

Vietnam War Memorial

Just south of the Utah Law Enforcement Memorial lies the Vietnam War Memorial.  The circular memorial is set in the hillside directly west of the Capitol building and south of the west entrance sidewalk and is approximately 60 feet in diameter, with a heroic-sized 8-foot bronze statue of an infantryman on a base of cast stone 9 feet in diameter. The base also serves as a planter with seats.  The statue faces away from four polished black marble slates with the names of Utah’s Vietnam war dead inscribed on them.

The statue, was sculpted by former Salt Lake resident and Marine Corps veteran Clyde Ross Morgan, and is titled, “But Not Forgotten.”  It depicts a young soldier returning from battle carrying a fallen friend’s rifle.  According to a story that appeared in a Deseret News article when the memorial was first announced, Morgan said the expression on his face mixes bewilderment with determination to do the job his country sent him to do, a look often called the “thousand-year stare.”

Here’s a slide show of pictures of some of the things we saw  …

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Well, tomorrow we wrap up our week of training here in Salt Lake City and I can’t wait to get home!  As we always like to finish on the high side, we’ve got a lot to do tonight to get ready for our last day.  Come back in two days (on May 19) and I’ll post a short closing blog from this trip and I’ll also let you know where I’m heading to next.

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