updated 2/9/2012 7:45:01 PM ET 2012-02-10T00:45:01

A state worker is facing disciplinary action after sending an official email to hundreds of people Thursday that contained an off-color term for breasts, the Oklahoma Insurance Department said.

The email was sent as the agency searched for people to honor at a tornado preparedness meeting.

The email with "offensive and unacceptable language" was traced to a staff member who was deeply apologetic, department spokesman Glenn Craven said. The agency did not identify the staffer.

"This email was not vetted through the normal process and neither the Insurance Commissioner nor any supervisory staff was aware of the distribution," Craven said in a statement. "This email was traced to a staff member who has accepted full responsibility and is deeply apologetic."

The email stated the Insurance Commissioner's Award would go to "the girl with the biggest" breasts, using a slang term. The agency sent a second "corrected and authorized" email about 20 minutes later saying the award would be given next month to someone who made outstanding contributions to the insurance industry in tornado preparedness.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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