Oregonians Urged to Contact 811 Before Digging

 Contact: Josh Thomas, Executive Director, Oregon Utility Notification Center
503-317-5007 | josh.thomas@digsafelyoregon.com 

 

This Thursday, August 11 (8/11), is National 811 Day. Also known as National Safe Digging Day, the observance exists to raise awareness about contacting 811 before beginning a digging or excavation project. The Oregon Utility Notification Center, which oversees the statewide call or click before you dig program, is reminding Oregonians that using the free service can save money and lives. 

“None of us have x-ray vision to see underground utilities before breaking ground, and we know there are a lot of construction and home improvement projects happening this time of year,” said Josh Thomas, Executive Director of the Oregon Utility Notification Center. “National Safe Digging Day is a perfect time to remind everyone to contact 811 first so they don’t have to call 911.”  Read more

Service Tariff 2022

April is Oregon Dig Safely Month

Oregon 811 is a proud sponsor of the Hillsboro Hops baseball team in 2021

Oregon 811 is a proud sponsor of the Hillsboro Hops baseball team in 2021. We’ve been out this week with our 811 Trailer and 811 Corvette celebrating National 811 Day and promoting our Call Before You Dig safe message.
Dozer Day

The OUNC partnered with NWN at Dozer Day/Nutter Foundation Vancouver

The OUNC partnered with NWN at Dozer Day/Nutter Foundation Vancouver over the weekend. The drive-through event brought over 1,000 cars filled with kids excited to see us put on a skit as they stopped at our dig site. With an excavator ready to dig, BobTheBuilder was there to make sure the 811 call was made. Kids were given a hard hat, safety vest, and backpack filled with our 811 swag. We are proud to support the Nutter Foundation.

Oregon Utility Notification Center names its first Executive Director. Veteran communications professional Josh Thomas joined the OUNC May 17, 2021.

(PORTLAND, Ore., May 2021) — Oregon Utility Notification Center (OUNC), also known as Oregon 811, is pleased to announce that after a yearlong search, Josh Thomas has been named the notification center’s first-ever executive director.

“It has been a long-awaited appointment for our agency, and we are excited to bring Josh onboard,” said Micah Brown, OUNC board chairman. “With Josh’s background and experience, we look to ensure future success in delivering the 811 message”

Thomas began his new role May 17, 2021. He comes to OUNC with nearly 25 years of experience in public relations and organizational representation. He has held lead communications roles within the Oregon Legislature, municipal government, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Port of Portland. Most recently, he has represented the Oregon dairy industry for the past six years.

Thomas holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from Portland State University, and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Oregon. His service on boards and committees has included an art festival, university bookstore, leadership training series, community events, state government, and organizations such as the American Association of Port Authorities, American Cancer Society and the Public Relations Society of America.

In this newly created role, Thomas will lead the 20-member OUNC board of directors, all of whom represent an industry segment and are appointed by the governor for a four-year term. The board is tasked with administering the OUNC and carrying out a variety of public relations and educational programs focused on spreading the “dig safely” damage prevention message.

“I am a firm believer that the best way to solve a problem is to prevent it—and I see great potential with the robust data we can use to effectively target our efforts,” said Thomas. “As the first executive director for the Oregon Utility Notification Center, I am committed to preventing underground utility damage and injuries through effective training, planning and communications.”

“Josh Thomas joining the OUNC as its first Executive Director is a major milestone for the OUNC,” said Ryan Sandhu, OUNC board member and chair of the organization’s executive director selection committee. “Josh has the experience and skill set to help the OUNC continue to fulfil its damage prevention mission and help lead the agency into the next round of advances in the damage prevention industry.”

Thomas lives in Tigard, where he is the Scoutmaster for Troop 423. His oldest son is an Eagle Scout and a student at Oregon State University; his youngest son plays baseball for Tigard High School. His wife, Laurie, runs a small family business as a structural engineer.

April is National Safe Digging Month

We want to remind homeowners and contractors to #call811 before any digging is done to reduce the risk of striking an underground utility line… This is essential to ensure utility services are not interrupted for community members as we continue to deal with COVID-19.

Joyce Nelson receives OUNC recognition plaque

Joyce Nelson receives recognition plaqueAfter months of delays due to COVID-19, OUNC Chairman, Micah Brown, finally had an opportunity to present Joyce Nelsen her recognition plaque.  Joyce was on the OUNC board for 8 years, holding two terms.  She held the Treasurer’s position for 6 years and her dedication will forever be appreciated.  She continues her 811 efforts supporting the East Linn council and has for over a decade. Thank you Joyce!

OUNC earns Honor Roll for FY 2020!

The Oregon Utility Notification Center earns Honor Roll for Fiscal Year 2020.  Read details here.

Honor Roll Certificate

Congratulations to Frank Frenzel, who received the 2020 Morrison Award!

Frank Frenzel - Morrison AwardCongratulations to Frank Frenzel, who received the 2020 Morrison Award!
Frank was a member of the East Linn UCC for over 25 years. During his time with ELUCC he participated in the contractor’s breakfast & dinners and volunteered at many safety days spreading the Dig Safe message.
He was an advocate at the Career Day in Lebanon where he successfully brought in over 1,000 students and people to view the different contractors in our area. He reached out to the OUNC who has helped support his efforts at these events. His humbleness always shines through as he shares his Call Before You Dig message.