Acadian Ambulance’s Paramedic of the Year Luncheon was recently held at the Lafayette Convention Center in Lafayette, La.
The annual Luncheon honors all of Acadian’s medics and staff and recognizes the Paramedic of the Year, who is voted upon by his peers. The 2014 Paramedic of Year is Alex Durio of Lafayette. Senator Fred Mills, Jr., served as master of ceremonies for the event and the guest speaker was Willie Robertson, a businessman, outdoorsman, hunter, author, and star of A&E’s “Duck Dynasty.”
Robertson praised the medics and all of Acadian’s employees for working so hard to serve their communities, and noted how they redefine the conventional meaning of success. "Saving someone's life is a success," he said. "Keeping people safe is a success. Helping out your communities is a success, because our communities rely on you. You are all truly successful in what you do."
The luncheon was held during National EMS Week, which honors emergency medical services across the nation. “This year’s national theme is ‘EMS: Dedicated. For Life.’, and nothing could be truer,” said Acadian's Lead Medical Director Dr. Charles Burnell. “If you look around this room, you will see some of the finest EMTs and paramedics in the nation, who have dedicated themselves to providing the best emergency care to those in need. We also have to recognize our dedicated partners in the EMS field—our fellow first responders, fire fighters, law enforcement and ER teams—who help keep the chain of emergency care at the highest level. We are fortunate to work with you.”
Burnell presented the prestigious 2014 Paramedic of the Year Award to Alex Durio, a paramedic stationed in Lafayette, La., on a critical care unit. Durio joined the Acadian team in 2008, but placed his EMS career on hold in 2011 to join the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. Gone for nearly a year, he returned to Acadian to continue his EMS career. Because of his service to our country, Durio was awarded the Paramedic of the Year Commendation Medal in 2013 by the Attakapas Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.
Durio accepted the honor on behalf of all of his follow medics. "This is why I work for Acadian. We put service first. We recognize that the patient comes first and, by extension, the communities that we serve come first. We will not compromise the quality of our patient care,” Durio said.
Richard Zuschlag, Acadian’s CEO and chairman of the board, thanked the entire Acadian team for remaining dedicated to the company’s mission. “We are very fortunate to have excellent medics who put patient care first and excellence ahead of anything else. While we recognized Alex Durio today, we also honor all of our 4,000 employee-owners who work so hard to help the communities we serve,” Zuschlag said. “We are also very thankful for the support of the government officials, our law enforcement and fire department partners, the hospital and nursing home administrators, and all of our customers,” he added.
Since 1971, Acadian has been committed to providing the highest level of emergency medical care and transportation possible. In the past decade Acadian has expanded to include a diverse suite of divisions including Acadian Ambulance Service, Acadian Monitoring Services, Air Med, Executive Aircraft Charter Service, National EMS Academy and Safety Management Systems.