Every Season, Every Day


Toks Talks Transportation blog logoHappy Public Service Recognition Week, California! This nationwide celebration is a time to honor and thank all public servants for the vital, committed work they put forth every day. We know that here, in our great state, Californians are reliant on this dedication in order to maximize their wellness and overall quality of life. 

Click image to view Employee Recognition video sent from Secretary Tong and me

Nearly a quarter million California state workers serve all people in every community, so their range of work is as vast and varied as the 40 million people who call California home.

I’d like to mention the extraordinary public servants whose specific work responsibilities look a lot different than what most of us do for a living. They carry out their work with unique circumstances and in surroundings that the majority of us don’t need to consider as we sit down at our computer each day.

I’m referring to those whose roles, inherently, are deemed unpredictable and higher risk than working behind a desk. Within our CalSTA family, those individuals are CHP officers and Caltrans maintenance workers. These jobs are a critical part of our workforce contributing to a functional California, and those who step into these roles are nothing less than exceptional.

Image of Gov. Newsom speaking with CHP staff
At the 2024 CHP Memorial, Governor Newsom thanks dedicated CHP leadership for overseeing our state’s highest level of Safety, Service and Security.

Image of Secretary Toks with Caltrans staff at the Fallen Worker's Memorial
Caltrans Workers Memorial 2024. Director Tavares and each and every member of his 22,000 strong team are essential to California’s transportation network.

Tragically, some of these beloved CalSTA family members had their lives taken while performing their jobs in service to all Californians. Specifically, we have lost 193 workers from Caltrans and 232 peace officers from CHP. These heavy losses carry sadness and devastation that we never break from, and we must continue remembering these individuals in perpetuity.

Springtime is when we formally memorialize our fallen workers. Our ceremonies are important annual markers honoring those we lost in the line of duty, and it provides families, friends and colleagues a predictable and supportive time to recognize their loved one’s sacrifice.  But we must not lose sight of the fact that they are missed, thought about and loved every single season, every single day, during ceremonies, on walks, during dinner and all moments in between.

And Springtime is also designated for Public Service Recognition Week, as I mentioned we are observing in real time.

All public servants deserve appreciation and acknowledgement―today, tomorrow and every day.  Whether it’s winter, a Saturday or just a typical day at the office, I ask you to express your gratitude to those who truly deserve it, our hardworking determined public servants.


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