By virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution in the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, there is hereby officially recognized:
|Larry A. Oliver
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Excellence in EMS
For 30 years Larry has been devoted to the EMS system and helping those in need. He’s been actively involved with the Lord Fairfax EMS Council for 27 years, serving as president and currently as vice-president. Larry is an enthusiastic leader and mentor that continues to demonstrate the importance of education in EMS. Currently, he works as an advanced life support coordinator and deputy chief in charge of training in Frederick County. He also travels throughout Virginia as a skills evaluator for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians-Intermediate and Paramedic. Not only is Larry viewed as “the face of EMS” by his colleagues in the Lord Fairfax region, but his extensive background in EMS and fire training along with certifications, memberships and volunteerism are a testament to his dedication and excellence in the field. Larry’s contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|John R. Bomar
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding Pre-hospital Provider
John has provided exemplary services on the local level as well as on the national level. In the spring of 2008 he was handpicked to serve on a team of individuals to assist in the pilot and development of a national response team capability known as the Medical Operational Detachment Squad, developed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Disaster Medical System. In September of 2008, due to his exemplary pre-hospital leadership qualities, John was selected to the position of deputy commander for VA-1 Disaster Medical Assistance Team and then deployed to Atlanta to prepare for the arrival of Hurricane Ike. When it was determined that Hurricane Ike would bypass Florida and head into the Gulf of Mexico, he repacked his team of 35 doctors, nurses, paramedics and support personnel and was bussed over four states to Louisiana. Bomar’s stellar attributes and dedication to volunteering demonstrate his mission to provide outstanding pre-hospital care. John’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Scott Weir, M.D.
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding EMS Physician
Dr. Scott Weir epitomizes what the emergency medical services field is by leading a very large system with poise, intuition and intelligence. He strives to make the Commonwealth’s EMS system the best it can be and to achieve optimal patient care. For more than eight years, Dr. Weir has served as the Operational Medical Director for Fairfax County Fire and Rescue, one of the largest career departments in the state. His responsibilities include medical oversight and policy for approximately 1,225 career employees and 300 volunteers. Dr. Weir routinely participates in training related to the Federal Emergency Management Agency Task Force and Urban Search and Rescue Team and has been deployed all over the world. He exemplifies outstanding leadership and dedication in his implementation of medical control. Dr. Weir’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Gary R. Burke
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding EMS Pre-Hospital Educator
Gary excels in teaching and serving as a model and mentor for others. He has delivered all aspects of EMS training and education to the Tidewater EMS region for more than 15 years and has been an active member of the Chesapeake Fire Department for the past 20 years. Since 2005, Gary has served as the training officer in the Chesapeake Fire Department. Previously, the fire department relied solely upon outside training resources. However, with the growing need to improve the program’s performance and training initiatives, Gary created an in-house program that has been replicated by many agencies throughout the Tidewater region. As an EMS educator, mentor, trainer, peer, paramedic and firefighter, Gary has left an indelible mark with his initiative, energy and drive. Gary’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Natalie M. Root, R.N.
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Nurse with Outstanding Contribution to EMS
Natalie plays an important role in many aspects of patient care delivery through her work at Mary Washington Hospital and partnership with the Rappahannock EMS Council Regional Training & Simulation Center. She is currently serving as a clinical nurse specialist and coordinates and implements education programs while developing new protocols and processes to improve patient care delivery. Natalie played a critical role in the MediCorp partnership with the Rappahannock EMS Council in the creation of pediatric and trauma simulation labs at the Regional Training Center in Fredericksburg. Since the Regional Training & Simulation Center opened in October 2007, over 1,200 EMS personnel have utilized the facility and its simulation labs. It’s the only facility of its kind in the region for EMS personnel and has seen a great deal of success because of Natalie’s contributions. She’s an exceptional nurse who has demonstrated strong leadership and cooperation in support of the regional EMS system. She has shown respect and understanding for EMS through her desire to work with the Rappahannock EMS Council and EMS providers to deliver better outcomes for patient care. Natalie’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Byron F. Andrews
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding EMS Administrator
With more than 30 years of service to EMS, Byron has demonstrated exemplary leadership and administrative skills through organizing, conducting, managing, problem-solving and evaluating within his affiliated organizations. Since 1988, Chief Andrews has served in various positions and is currently the Chief of Sterling Volunteer Rescue Squad, where he administers and commands 150 volunteers. In a region that’s primarily run by career EMS groups and a county that continues to add career support to their volunteer agencies, Chief Andrews has been able to recruit and maintain a large volunteer force by using his extensive skills as an administrator. Through his leadership and expertise, Chief Andrews’ squad stands out as an excellent example of a well-run volunteer EMS agency. Most recently, Sterling Volunteer Rescue Squad was recognized in EMS Magazine as the “Best Volunteer Agency”, which is a direct result of Chief Andrews’ leadership. Chief Andrews’ significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Franklin Southampton Charities
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding Contribution to EMS
Founded in 2000, Franklin Southampton Charities has been a proud supporter of EMS and fire agencies in their region. Their mission is to provide financial support for activities that improve the health and quality of life for people within their service area. The Tidewater EMS region was able to purchase new personal protective clothing, cardiac monitors, autovents and response vehicles with their sponsorship. Additionally, their financial support has been instrumental in providing advanced life support training to EMS providers. Franklin Southampton Charities significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|The Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad, Inc.
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding EMS Agency
The Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad (SARS) is a volunteer agency that provides outstanding professionalism and quality of service through innovative training, community awareness, preventative health programs, public relations and active participation in the EMS system. SARS stresses the importance of education by regularly hosting training sessions and by having eight EMT-Basic instructors teach classes regionally. SARS also instated a quality assurance committee that actively reviews EMS calls to make sure that proper patient care and protocol procedures were followed. SARS actively participates in the community by attending local events and sponsoring organizations like the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank and Boy Scout venture club. They visit local daycares, elementary schools, adolescent behavioral health facilities and other community groups to provide information about health and safety. Twice a year they offer CPR classes to the public and remain a resource for patrons that have medical questions or need their blood pressure or blood glucose checked. Additionally, The City of Staunton designated the SARS building as an emergency operations center in case of a local or regional disaster. The Staunton-Augusta Rescue Squad’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly valued by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Safe Kids Central Shenandoah Valley Coalition
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding Contribution to EMS for Children
Safe Kids Central Shenandoah Valley Coalition helped to pass legislation (which went into effect July 1, 2009) prohibiting the sale of novelty lighters to juveniles under the age of 18. Additionally, Safe Kids Central Shenandoah partnered with Harrisonburg Fire Department, WHSV-TV3 and Rockingham Memorial Hospital to form the Child Safety Alliance to help parents with child safety seat inspections. This program has been a huge success because they are able to have a full-time child safety seat technician on-duty Monday through Friday. They’ve also seen inspection rates sky rocket from 665 in 2006 to 1,436 in 2008. Safe Kids Central Shenandoah also received grant funding to conduct a study on distracted drivers in school zones, to educate children on the dangers of playing around railroad tracks and to disseminate more than 4,000 bike helmets to Harrisonburg students in kindergarten through eighth grade. Safe Kids Central Shenandoah Valley Coalition’s significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly appreciated by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
|Erin D. Elrod
2009 Governor’s Emergency Medical Services Award for Outstanding Telecommunications Dispatcher
Erin has been employed by the Winchester Emergency Communications Center for more than 13 years and has served in the Director’s position since May 2005. During that period she has proven to be a tremendous asset to both the EMS community and her staff. Her leadership and management skills were put to the test when her workforce was at an all time low due to staffing shortages, but she was able to increase her team from five to twelve full-time members. She also set up an extensive and cohesive training program for telecommunications specialists. Erin kept team morale strong by establishing programs like “Dress Up Day”, where employees would donate $5 to dress in their favorite funky socks or funny hat. Then, the money collected would go toward community outreach projects like the Salvation Army Angel Tree, breast cancer research, gifts for residents at nursing homes and other worthwhile causes. Erin’s dedication and significant contributions to Virginia’s local, regional and state EMS system are exceptional and greatly appreciated by the Commonwealth of Virginia.
2009 Governor’s EMS Award for Outstanding Contribution to EMS by a High School Senior
After experiencing several near-death experiences with her mom, Audrey knew at a very young age that she wanted to save lives. Countless times she’d witnessed the awe-inspiring work of those people “in the big flashing box” and she knew it was her calling. Even today, she says that she owes her drive and perseverance to her mother and the medic crews that saved her mom’s life! Audrey is an EMT-B with the Montross Volunteer Rescue Squad, and she’s one of the youngest EMT-B’s in Westmoreland County that holds certifications as Firefighter 1 & 2, Hazmat Operations and Basic and Light Rescue. Audrey also serves as Captain of the Oak Grove Junior Volunteer Fire Department, where she pulls overnight shifts in addition to maintaining her rank as 6th in her class and dual enrollment in honors courses and advanced placement. Her ultimate goal is to become a flight medic and she plans to attend Rappahannock Community College.