The recipient of this week's Ben's Bell is Caren Prather, who trains community members in emergency preparedness.

She was nominated by Mike Hein, director of the Pima County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Prather has volunteered with the office for 10 years and oversees the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training program.

"Caren has conducted numerous CERT training classes for the immediate community as well as throughout Southern Arizona. As a result, our citizens are better prepared to deal with disasters affecting their community with a better understanding of emergency preparedness," Hein wrote in his nomination.

"Caren does her work quietly and without regard for recognition, but her services are invaluable. She volunteers approximately 30 hours every week in our office and travels in her personal car to instruct these classes. While conducting these classes, Caren has never requested reimbursement for gas or other expenses."

Prather, who earned two master's degrees, is retired from the Navy, where she achieved the rank of captain and served as a registered nurse.

Prather is a volunteer member of the Arizona Disaster Medical Assistance Team and has deployed to several national disasters, including Hurricane Katrina.

The project

Ben's Bells promote kindness and community. Each week a person who betters Tucson is "belled." Go to to submit a name. Go to or call 628-2829 for information. Recipients also are featured on Friday's Morning Blend on KGUN 9.