This message has been transcribed from Mark Murray’s speech at General Council on March 23, 2018.
It’s wonderful to see a lot of familiar faces over the many years that I’ve been involved. I’ve been with the state 23-plus years, almost 24 years. I’ve also been involved with UPEA for about 23 years now and it’s been an honor and a privilege to work with UPEA and to work with all of you great people.
I have the opportunity to travel a lot. As I travel, I look at other states to see what’s going on with their state employees and law enforcement officers. When I was down in Texas, I didn’t realize that when you’re driving down there and it’s raining, you better have your lights turned on. It’s a good thing, because an officer who looked like Barney Fife was staring me down because I didn’t have my lights on, but he was tied up in an accident, but I saw the sign requiring such. It is fun to watch employees in different areas and different states and see what happens. It makes you realize how great Utah’s public employees really are. You know things happen. We’re behind the doors and nobody sees a lot of us, except for those right out in front of us, but the things that you do are so important. You’re the ones that make this state move forward because of your jobs. I don’t care what it is, how small you think it is; it is important and vital to the state of Utah, because you’re the ones making Utah great. I really appreciate everything that everyone in this room does. We have our association here that fights for our rights, for our wages, and to make sure that everything is aligned and that we’re not being taken advantage of.
There’s a little story that happened years ago, when I was parked down there at the Sears at Fashion Place. I was in the store, my wife was in the passenger seat and our 2 ½- or 3-year-old son was in the driver’s seat pretending he was driving the car. Some lady pulled up there, stopped, trying to be a Good Samaritan and let them in so they could proceed on their way, but there were about three things that she didn’t see. One of them was the driver was only about 3 years old, the other one was that there was an island there about 6 inches high up that they were parked in front of, and the third one was that there was about a 2 ½-inch-high hedge in front of the car. But she tried frantically to try to let them in and finally gave up in frustration and just left. Our jobs are kind of like that, there are barriers or hedges that block our way. That’s where we come in, as UPEA and our staff tears down these hedges to create a path where we can accomplish the tasks and things that we need to do, and you are the ones who do that.
I compliment our staff. They are awesome. There are things we get to see on Advisory and the Board, seeing what staff do, where you realize and appreciate how wonderful these people are and everything that they are doing for us. They are the ones that are there on our behalf making sure that things are happening, and they are the ones up on the Hill, making sure the good bills go through and the bad ones are stopped. And I am so appreciative of our staff and for what they do for us. I am also really appreciative of all of you for being here and for taking part in this, because you’re the ones that make UPEA happen. Dennis, will you stand up for a minute? Take a look at his shirt there. The law enforcement district comes up with a different t-shirt every year and if I remember right it says “attitude is everything” is that correct?” –Dennis said “yes.” And it is, attitude is everything and I try to instill that in my employees, because I know that you have to have a good attitude no matter what. Things look bad, but you always have a good attitude because they are going to be better. I appreciate all of you and everything that you’ve done and carry on!