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Bill Rise Named 2011 EMT of the Year

Aug 31, 2011

On August 30, at its General Membership Meeting in Las Vegas, NAEMT awarded its EMT of the Year Award to William (Bill) Rise, EMT-I, of Milbank, South Dakota.

Rise, a volunteer EMT-I with Grant-Roberts County Ambulance Service, is described as an outstanding example of an EMT by Katheryn Q. Benton, South Dakota EMT Association (SDEMTA) State Training Officer. “By helping educate other EMS providers and the public, as well as promoting safety to everyone, Bill shows his commitment to the care and welfare of the people of his community and the State of South Dakota,” she says.

Benton notes that because of Rise's commitment to EMS, he currently is enrolled in a paramedic program to increase his skill level. He looks to “provide an even higher level of care to the patients he serves and for the ambulance service of which he is a vital member,” says Benton.

Assistant Chief Corey Hooth of the Milbank Police Department also notes that Rise actively works on improving his knowledge and skills in EMS. Hooth says Rise's “dedication and commitment to the EMS profession is beyond reproach.” Duane Tillman, EMT-I, of Grant-Roberts Ambulance Service, commends Rise for sharing his knowledge with other EMS personnel as well.

Mike Mach of the Milbank Fire and Rescue Department comments that Rise has always been very active with the department, not only at the scene of incidents, but also during drills and in helping newer members. “He is experienced with rescue drills and helps with planning and setting up different rescue drills such as vehicle extraction and procedures in an actual water rescue,” Mach says.

Since 1989, Rise has found time to volunteer with the Grant-Roberts County Ambulance Service and also volunteers many hours with organizations including the Milbank Volunteer Fire Department and the Police Reserves.

He has served as a police reserve officer since 1999 and is Secretary/Treasurer of the Fraternal Order of Police. As a member of the Milbank Police Department, Rise has been “a valuable member of our department, serving the Milbank community with honor and distinction,” says Hooth.

“Through continual training and hands-on experience, Bill has become a valuable asset to the local community,” says Tillman. Rise is trained in Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD) and helps on the Watertown, S.D., CISD team. It's one of his toughest jobs, Benton says.

Trained as an American Heart Association CPR/AED instructor, Rise has been involved in coordinating and teaching bicycle safety courses to the public, teaching first aid courses to local fire departments, Boy Scouts and 4-H groups, and in many events promoting safety in the community. He also is involved with the Department of Public Safety, conducting annual child safety seat, seat belt and motorcycle helmet surveys within the county.

Rise has served as Vice-President of the SDEMTA for more than 10 years and has been involved on its various committees. He also volunteers for the Masonic Temple, Elraid Shrine in Sioux Falls, and the Yelduz Shrine in Aberdeen. “He has made numerous trips transporting children to the Shrine Hospital in the Twin Cities,” notes Tillman.

Benton says, “It's time for everyone to take notice of the person who is always helping, is there when needed, and is the one who always can be relied upon to get the job done.”

The NAEMT EMT of the Year Award is sponsored by Braun Industries and is a part of the National EMS Awards program. Award recipients receive $1,000, registration to EMS World Expo, plus $1,000 for travel and lodging to attend EMS World Expo and the NAEMT Annual Meeting.