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2018 Recipients of the EMS Advocate of the Year Awards Announced

Mar 13, 2018

NAEMT will present the 2018 EMS Advocate of the Year Awards on April 11 at EMS On The Hill Day. EMS Advocate of the Year Awards recognize EMS professionals whose volunteer efforts advance EMS through educating and engaging elected government leaders, the EMS community, the wider healthcare community, and the public. NAEMT congratulates and thanks the recipients for their determined support on behalf of the EMS profession and our patients!

Three EMS professionals were selected to receive the 2018 awards from nominations submitted from around the country. The recipients are:

Andrew Jackson (Illinois)
Andrew is Director and EMS Chief of Putnam County EMS and advocates consistently to ensure that every patient receives the best prehospital care. He is an ambassador for the EMS profession and takes it upon himself to meet with local and state officials to educate them on the important service EMS provides in the community. He has also joined in our advocacy efforts during EMS On The Hill Day for many years. Staff member Kathy Newhalfen said, “Our Chief lives and breathes for all of us in this great EMS field.” Jermey Simmons, another staff member, continued, “We, the staff and the Putnam county residents, feel that Chief Andrew Jackson is an outstanding person and really deserves some recognition for his hard work on behalf of our profession.”

William “Mike” McMichael (Delaware)
Delaware Governor John Carney said in his nomination, “Throughout his career, Mike has worked to strengthen the EMS community through education and advocacy.” Mike has served his EMS profession and NAEMT as the advocacy coordinator in the state of Delaware. Using his more than 30 years of service in fire and EMS agencies, Mike has demonstrated his leadership and advocacy skills at the local and state levels. Mike has also supported our profession on Capitol Hill through his regular attendance at EMS On The Hill Day. “He is strong and a driven team player who genuinely cares about his community. He strives to improve it through his service every day,” continued Gov. Carney.

Jennifer Smith (Wisconsin)
Jennifer serves on the Wisconsin EMS Association’s (WEMSA’s) Board of Directors and chairs the association’s advocacy committee. She has taken the lead on advocating on EMS issues in Wisconsin and in 2017, co-chaired the inaugural EMS Day at the state Capitol in Madison. She authors the WEMSA column, News from the Capitol, on local, state and national legislative issues. Jennifer advocates actively in her town, county and state. Mark Cohen, WEMSA Executive Director, states, “Jennifer regularly attends meeting in the Wisconsin Capitol with me to meet and educate legislators on EMS issues.” Jennifer testifies before the Wisconsin Senate and House Committees on EMS issues and works collaboratively with state organizations.

As part of the award, recipients have their expenses paid to participate in EMS On The Hill Day. Nominations for this award are evaluated on the extent to which the nominee effectively advocates for the passage of EMS legislation by:

  • Educating elected government leaders at the local, state or federal levels on the components of the legislation and how it supports the ability of EMS to provide quality patient care.
  • Building strong relationships with the elected officials and their staff who have influence over the passage of EMS legislation.
  • Educating fellow EMS professionals about EMS legislation; how the legislation would impact the ability of EMS to provide quality patient care; the importance of advocating for the legislation; and how to effectively advocate.
  • Engaging members of the EMS profession in advocacy activities in support of the legislation.
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