The National Child Passenger Safety Board created an annual award to recognize one exemplary CPS Technician as well as well as one exceptional CPS Technician Instructor for their work and dedication to this field. The winners of the second annual Child Passenger Safety Technician and Instructor of the Year Awards are:

award-winner-1The CPS Instructor of the Year:
Katrina Altenhofen

Washington County, Iowa

Katrina Altenhofen is the Program Manager of the Iowa Department of Public Health and was one of Iowa’s first CPS technicians and instructors. She began her career as a paramedic and joined the Iowa Department of Public Health in 1995, where she was certified as a CPS technician and instructor. She started Iowa’s Child Passenger Safety Seat program in October 1998, and the following year worked tirelessly to obtain an Iowa vanity license plate to help fund injury prevention initiatives. The “Love Our Kids” license plates still available today have helped fund hundreds of CPS projects throughout her state. In addition to her work in Iowa, Katrina was a member of the panel that created the NHTSA Transporting Children Safely in Ground Ambulances guidelines and is currently assisting New York’s EMSC program to develop an online EMS CPS training. Katrina lives in rural Washington County, Iowa with her husband, Mike, and is the mother of three adult sons.

Additional details about Katrina and dedication to child passenger safety can be found in the Instructor of the Year press release

award-winner-1The CPS Technician of the Year:
Mandi Seethaler

Anchorage, Alaska

Mandi is a CPS technician from the Alaska Injury Prevention Center – the busiest fitting station in Alaska. Mandi was certified as a CPS technician in 2010, and in the last two years has checked more than 300 child safety seats all throughout the state, oftentimes traveling great distances in harsh weather conditions. Through her work at the Alaska Injury Prevention Center, Mandi helps host the annual Alaska CPS Conference, where CPS technicians from all throughout the state travel hundreds of miles to attend. The conference presents an opportunity for Alaska CPS technicians to learn together and share stories of how technicians work through the challenges with small communities to encourage families to safely secure their children. Mandi lives in Anchorage with her husband, Thad, and 16-year-old son, Kolin.

Additional details about Mandi and dedication to child passenger safety can be found in the Technician of the Year press release


The CPS Board received 68 nominations for the 2012 CPS technician and instructor of the year awards. All nominees and the persons who nominated them are listed in the "Congratulations 2012 CPS Award Winners" document

Below: Congratulations to the 2012 CPS Award winners. Pictured here (L to R) are Jennifer Huebner-Davidson of AAA, Technician of the year Mandi Seethaler, Instructor of the Year Katrina Altenhofen, and CPS Board President Amy Heinzen at the 2012 Lifesavers Conference awards presentation.