Off Limits

With all of the fur flying over dog parks and canines pooping at Cheesman, the Spring 2003 issue of Children's couldn't have come at a better time. For the past two years, each edition of the Children's Hospital magazine has included a thank-you note from a patient, and in the current edition, young McKenzie offers this:

Dear Dr. O'Connor,

Going poop is so easy right now! I actually love going poop. My mom and dad are proud of me. I've only clogged the toilet once. Thanks for helping me!

This is no small-type letter to the editor: McKenzie's glee -- and the explanation of her chronic retentive constipation ailment -- takes up nearly a half a page. "We get so many letters from patients and families, and we just thought that one was really, really cute," says Children's editor Melissa Howell.

Just keep it outta the parks.

Preparation eh? Emergency preparedness is all the rage. The Colorado Department of Agriculture recently installed a director of Livestock Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security. The University of Denver now boasts the Rocky Mountain Center for Homeland Defense. And Emergency Preparedness Seminars, a company based in Highlands Ranch, is taking full advantage of the situation, lining up heavy hitters to speak at one-day seminars on the topic.

EPS even got former senator Gary Hart, who may not be prepared to announce another presidential bid but is more than happy to further his Paul Revere image, to sign on as a keynote speaker at its first event, set for Denver on June 19. "He has been focusing on national security issues for a number of years, but he has really recently gained a great deal of prominence based on his work with Senator Warren Rudman and the U.S. Commission on National Security," says Jack Sparks, Hart's spokesman. "I think the forum they're putting together here in Colorado is important because it's focusing on business leaders. It's definitely an audience he has talked to in the past and is looking forward to speaking with again."

And Hart won't be alone. The company has signed on a slew of names, including such surprisingly high-profile players as Gilead Sher, former cabinet secretary for Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and a chief Palestinian negotiator. Local speakers include Kirk Yeager, Colorado assistant insurance commissioner, and Dave Heller, Qwest vice president of risk management and chief compliance officer. Hell, even Aurora's SWAT team is represented, by Joe Young.

"I'm not an expert in any field whatsoever," says EMS president Mark Sisselman. "But I know how to put together a group of people who are. We've been really good at getting Gilead and Gary, but we wanted to get a local perspective. Each individual area has their own nuances, and we're trying to not just cover the field generically."

And who knows? People might even pay the $595 to have a shot at a live, local representative of Qwest.


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