The 2019 AAA Election will once again be paperless and held entirely online. Primary contacts of Active Single State and Multi-State Members are permitted by AAA’s bylaws to vote in board elections.

Election Timeline

  • 9/30 | Voting Opens
    Election will be paperless and held online. Ballots will be delivered to AAA Active Member primary contacts via email.
  • 10/25 | Voting Closes 11:59pm
  • 11/5 | Election results announced at the 2019 AAA Annual Conference & Tradeshow.

Slate of Candidates

Thank you and best of luck to this year’s slate of talented and seasoned board candidates.

Region I (4)

Region I Director—4 Candidates

Region 1

ME, NH, VT, MA, RI, NY, CT, NJ

Reginald Allen

Chief Executive Officer
CHS Mobile Integrated Health Care
Rochester, NY

Candidate Statement

I have been involved in EMS and the fire service for the past 38 years, serving in many capacities, including volunteer, career, paramedic, and management. I currently serve as Board member as well as on the AAA on the Professional Standards Committee, Payment Reform Committee, and represent the AAA on the EMS 3.0 Committee. As a freshman board member, I am impressed with the board and their dedication to advancing EMS across the country. I feel that after one year on the board I am just learning the ropes as it were and would value the opportunity to continue to serve on the board.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. Increase reimbursement for EMS service. Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement is woefully short of what it costs to provide the service, and the private insurers are not offsetting the losses as the payer mix is shifting to government-funded payers
  2. Recognition of Paramedics and EMTs as a profession and providing for a livable wage. The national shortage of Paramedics and EMT’s is exacerbated by the historically low pay and benefits for EMS.
  3. Community Paramedicine or similar programs to help reduce overall health care costs and have patients treated at the most appropriate location, be it home, urgent care, physician’s office, or emergency department.

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. Increase engagement of the EMS Community. We need a collective voice to our communities and legislators to effect change to move our profession forward. A collective voice is crtical as we prepare for cost data collection. EMS across the country needs to be sharing data with CMS in a consistent manner.
  2. Lobby for stabilized and appropriate reimbursement for EMS services, be it transport or CPM programs, by gaining recognition as a provider service. There are some hopeful signs with ET3 and cost data collection. We need to continue our efforts in this area.
  3. Recognition of EMS as an essential emergency service for all communities. EMS agencies are closing their doors for lack of funding and or lack of personnel. We need to assure EMS across the country is recognized as an essential service, supported by the communities we serve.

Jim Finger

Chief Executive Officer/ Administrator
Regional Ambulance Service
Rutland, VT

Candidate Statement

I have been involved in the association and the industry for many decades and have the same, if not more passion for the work we do every day, even all these years later. I have served as the chair of many committees, and at one point had the honor of being the President of the American Ambulance Association, but our work is not done.

Ambulance services are a critical part of the healthcare continuum and in rural areas like much of Vermont provide the only access to healthcare for many. I believe that participating in the association is important for us to ensure that the Congress hear from those of us on the front lines and the more we speak with one voice, regardless of our differences the more we can accomplish for all services nationwide. We must get our levels of reimbursement to match our costs of providing services, we must advance EMS as a profession so our staff is valued at the same level as other health care providers, we must find ways to reimburse all providers at a level that allows them to not only survive but thrive. We must do this for the health and well being of our patients and the communities we serve. I believe I have the right combination of experience, education and enthusiasm to represent all the members of Region 1 and can truly make a difference if elected.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Find a way to get reimbursed for uncompensated care. We are the only providers out there who truly provide universal healthcare…we need to receive some type of separate compensation for the incredible level of charitable or uncompensated care we provide.
2. Public safety officers deaths benefits for all provider types. What patch you wear on you uniform shouldn’t matter.
3. Getting all insurance plans to cover emergency and non emergency ambulance services as part of their essential benefits package. The federal government and insurance commissions should mandate it.

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Reimbursement – while patient care is our top priority, we cannot provide it if we can’t keep the lights on, the ambulances running and supplied and the staff paid.
2. Push for a seat at the larger healthcare table. We are a primary gateway into the healthcare system, and as such we should have a seat at the table with the big players like the AMA and AHA.
3. Recruit more members so we can be an even greater influencer with the Congress. When we win on the Hill, everyone reaps the rewards, so we need to engage a many services as possible. We can accomplish even more with more members.


Ron Quaranto

Chief Operating Officer
Brewster Ambulance Service
Weymouth, MA

Candidate Statement

Thank you in advance for the consideration of electing me to the Region I board position on the American Ambulance Association Board of Directors. Being a past Board member I have enjoyed my time in this positions and look forward to continuing the mission of the Board which is to promote health care policies that ensure excellence in the ambulance services industry and provide research, education and communications programs to enable its members to effectively address the needs of the communities they serve. I feel that with my years of experience in the industry, my willingness to be openminded and the fact I am a self starter I feel I would be an excellent candidate for this position.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. Declining reimbursement poses many issues. Health systems and emergency services are forced to work with thinner margins, do more with less and try to not let it affect quality. Due to reimbursement reduction, expanding regulations and insurance denials, the financial environment is tougher each year.
  2. Staffing shortages poses one of the largest challenges for emergency healthcare.
  3. Getting regulations changed to keep up with the ever changing emergency healthcare systems.

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. To promote health care policies that ensure excellence in the ambulance services industry.
  2. To provide research, education and communications programs to enable its members to effectively address the needs of the communities they serve.
  3. Help address the staffing shortage and make Emergency Medical Services a sustainable career choice for people.

Patrick Sean Tyler

President and Chief Executive Officer
Lifeline Ambulance Service (Transformative Healthcare)
Woburn, MA

Candidate Statement

Pointedly, there are a host of challenges faced by EMS agencies and services across the USA. Common issues of a dwindling workforce, downward pressure on reimbursement and cost containment, combined with an immediate need for professionalization of our industry points to a need for the AAA to aptly balance its priorities.

Over time, the AAA and its leaders have tirelessly pursued solutions to components of these problems. Their efforts have set the stage for new thinking on these solutions to these problems, among the others that regionally affect each of us.

Answering the business challenges such that those who answer the call are adequately prepared to successfully deliver high-quality clinical care is my focus.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. Integration of clinical quality and reimbursement
  2. Diminishing workforce
  3. Rapidly growing wage pressure

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. Growth in reimbursement as a sustainable policy standard.
  2. Professional development surrounding expectations of minimum professional behavior.
  3. Develop a strategy to help leverage technology across the diverse spectrum of operators.

Region II (3)

Region II Director—3 Candidates

Region 2

PA, WV, MD, VA, NC, SC, GA, FL, DC, DE, MS, AL

David Grayson

Chief Executive Officer
CareMed EMS
Oxford, MS

Candidate Statement

I became an EMT when I was 18 years old so that I could work at a Boy Scout camp during the summers. Little did I know that it would lead to a career in EMS lasting over 30 years so far. EMS has proven to be a rewarding career and given me the chance to work with some extremely dedicated professionals. Now that I am not the youngest guy in the room, I cant imagine anything I would have rather dedicated my life to.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Payment Reform
2. ED Overcrowding/Overuse
3. Staffing

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Advocating for permanent payment reform.
2. Work closer with state associations to advocate for state issues.
3. Member Education.


Josef Penner

Executive Director
Mecklenburg EMS Agency – Medic
Charlotte, NC

Candidate Statement

The AAA’s advocacy on national reimbursement is critical to success of EMS delivery. The Cost Data Reporting is of paramount importance to ensure Medicare has correct information in setting future reimbursement. Education for the industry is essential to progress within a strategic framework that represents the needs of all members and their communities.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Cost Data Collection – Provide information to Medicare to improve reimbursement
2. Reducing costs and simultaneously improving access and quality
3. Leveraging access points (like EMS) to connect people to the care they need (CMMI’s ET3 is one example)

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Defending and improving Medicare reimbursement
2. Educating members to navigate opportunities brought by healthcare reform
3. Provide / facilitate useful educational opportunities for our members


Terence Ramotar

Regional Director
American Medical Response
Tampa, FL

Candidate Statement

I am currently the Region 2 Alternate Director and have been privileged to serve the American Ambulance Association in various roles over the past several years including Region Director, Chair of the Education Committee and on various other committees. With your support, I hope to represent our region as Director for the upcoming term.

My 25 years of working within the EMS industry includes volunteer services, non-profit agencies and both small and large EMS organizations. Currently overseeing multiple operations throughout Florida and Georgia, I’m seeing firsthand how regulatory and economic pressures are impacting the care we deliver as clinicians. Faced with declining reimbursement, increasing operational costs, regulatory restrictions and a changing workforce, ambulance services face pressures that may seem insurmountable. However, value and quality cannot be negotiated. Our industry has a moral mandate to serve our communities with excellence, and in the best interest of the public’s health and well-being.
I bring a deep commitment to integrity and a core belief in servant leadership. I look forward to providing the leadership necessary to help bring our AAA membership together, advocate on the region’s behalf and champion efforts that provide value to our services.

I wholeheartedly ask for your support in doing so.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Federal under-reimbursement for ambulance services continue to threaten the quality of the services we provide to our communities. Although the AAA has had some recent wins, we must continue aggressive efforts to be reimbursed at sustainable levels.
2. Human Resource challenges stress our services nationwide on two fronts. The demand for Paramedics are quickly exceeding the supply. Subsequently, the talent pool is shrinking. Our legendary EMS leaders from the past twenty years are retiring and succession planning is becoming problematic.
3. A renewed vision for the future of EMS in a rapidly changing healthcare environment is now a dire need. Healthcare calls for reform, but how EMS becomes part of the collaborative solution is yet to be determined.

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Reimbursement. The AAA needs to continue its strong voice on Capitol Hill and protect against further threats while advocating for additional relief.
2. Membership. Our strength is in numbers. While the AAA membership is strong, there still is the opportunity to become stronger.
3. Leadership Development. By continuing to expand learning opportunities and sharing its wealth of knowledge, the AAA is and should continue to be the primary source for industry information and education.

Region III (2)

Region III Director—2 Candidates

Region 3

MI, WI, IL, OH, KY, TN, IN

Wayne Jurecki

Vice President / Chief Operating Officer
Bell Ambulance Service, Inc.
Milwaukee, WI

Candidate Statement

My name is Wayne Jurecki and I am honored to have been elected, and to serve, as Director – Region III of the American Ambulance Association since 2015. I have been involved with the Association since the early 1990’s. Previously I have been the chair of the Association Management Options workgroup, a co-chair of the Medicare Regulatory Committee, member of the Strategic Planning Workgroup, and speaker at both the Reimbursement and Annual conferences of the Association.

I am the Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Bell Ambulance, Inc. of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I have been with Bell for 35 years and started by doing data entry in the Billing Office. During my time at Bell I have worked in the Billing, Accounting, Human Resources, and Information Technology Departments. In 2003 I became Vice President and in 2011 became the Chief Operating Officers. I was instrumental in the drafting and negotiation of several service contracts, including Bell’s involvement in the City of Milwaukee’s 911 system. I have been involved in Bell’s growth from three locations within the City of Milwaukee to nine locations in Southeastern Wisconsin.

I am seeking re-election to the position of Director – Region III of the American Ambulance Association. I feel I can continue to be beneficial to the Association as we attempt to secure long-term reimbursement and regulatory reforms for the ambulance industry.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. Sustainability under increasing regularity and fiscal pressures
  2. Uncertainty of non-emergency transportation coverage
  3. Uncompensated and under-compensated care

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. Obtain long-term reimbursement relief and payment reform
  2. Obtain and ensure a consistent industry message
  3. Maintain and expand the AAA’s influential position on regulatory issues

 

Tom Tornstrom

Executive Director
Gundersen Tri-State Ambulance
La Crosse, WI

Candidate Statement

Greetings, I have served as an alternate AAA board member for Region 3 for just under one year. Alternate directors serve a one-year term and mine is up! During the first year, I have been learning and listening to the very knowledgeable and experienced board members and staff. I am extremely impressed with the connections our AAA staff and board have in Washington D.C. and at the state levels. As this first year was a learning process, I hope to continue for a second term and really be able to represent our members. I’ve been in EMS for 28 years and have served in numerous roles throughout my career. I understand EMS from the ground level to the top. I would greatly appreciate your vote!

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Reimbursement
2. Staffing
3. Rural Sustainability

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Reimbursement
2. Advocacy in all related issues
3. A voice for EMS

Region IV (2)

Region IV Director—2 Candidates

Region 4

KS, OK, TX, LA, AR, IA, MN, MO, SD, ND, NE

Jamie Pafford-Gresham

Chief Executive Officer
Pafford Medical Services, Inc.
Hope, AR

Candidate Statement

As our industry finds itself at a crossroads with Ambulance Cost Data Collection, ET3, vehicle safety changes, and endless reimbursement issues, I feel lead to seek a board position within the AAA. As your region 4 director, I will continue to help define our role as an association and industry as we look for our space within the healthcare industry. With over 36 years in EMS, I have gleaned a wealth of knowledge in all things ambulance! I love to talk about our industry, our medics and the great work they do on behalf of our communities. One of my strongest assets is building relationships and listening to others. I believe in the importance of working together across all provider types, allowing every provider the opportunity to express their issues and concerns, all while protecting ambulance services nationwide. I humbly ask for your support and would appreciate the opportunity to continue to serve within the AAA as your Board Director for Region 4.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. REIMBURSEMENT: The financial security of our providers is critical to the continued growth, development and stability of the industry and our association.
  2. INDUSTRY IDENTITY: Possibly the most significant contributing factor to all other issues we are faced with today is our identity crisis. As EMS moves from its infancy to adolescence we find ourselves still searching for just who we are, where we want to be, and how we want to get there.
    Are we, as an industry, public safety or mobile healthcare? Are we field clinicians or glorified taxi drivers? Are we an extension of the greater healthcare model or are we simply facilitators of patient access? A clearer and more defined identity will effectively solidify our professions place in this country.
  3. RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION: The ability to train and retain EMS personnel is at a critical point. Shortages of medics can be felt across the country.

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. COST COLLECTION: As CMS moves forward with Ambulance Cost Data Collection it is vital that we as an association take ownership. We must ensure that all providers understand the cost collection procedures by educating providers nationwide on techniques, the importance of capturing proper data, how it affects our industry and the future of our reimbursement. This is an educational opportunity for our association.
  2. RECRUITMENT: Association growth equals strength in so many areas like Capitol Hill presence, Committee level participation, financial stability for the association. We must continue to build relationships, recruit members and strengthen our foothold not only on Capitol Hill but with State associations to continue the dialogue and share our positions with government and elected officials.
  3. REIMBURSEMENT-FOCUS: As this is an exciting time for our industry, with ET3, Data Cost Collection, and many other issues on the table, We must not lose focus of our number one battle for proper reimbursement! Our providers continue to struggle with low rates nationwide and with discussions of surprise billing, arbitration of ambulance bills and in network providers, we must be vigilant in protecting our space and ensuring we can find equitable payments for our industry.

David Tetrault

Administrator/Chief Executive Officer
St. Francois County Ambulance District
Farmington, MO

Candidate Statement

As I run for the AAA Board of Directors Region 4 seat, I’m asking for your vote to continue our work bringing EMS forward. Let me be your voice on Capitol Hill as we continue to fight for both small, rural services as well as larger and urban providers. I will follow through, surface and address concerns within the region, and serve the needs of ambulance services across our nation to the very best of my ability.

I’ve served in EMS for more than 29 years, and have demonstrated my committed to EMS advocacy through attendance at hundreds of meetings and volunteering thousands of hours as a director and chair at both the state and national level.

As past president of the Missouri Emergency Medical Services Association and other positions I have been responsible for assisting and participating in planning, preparation, and execution of our annual meetings and workshops. I have also been instrumental in internal audits and the recommendation and implementation of financial procedures for MEMSA. I was a principal player in starting EMS day at the State Capital more than 10 years ago and am still actively involved in legislative activities and initiatives.

I am presently Chair of the AAA’s Membership Committee, in addition to Director for Region 4.

Given the opportunity, I will use all of my experience, skills, and abilities to drive results for YOUR ambulance service.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

  1. Healthcare Reform, Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement
  2. Making sure that EMS stays in front and continues to be recognized in this country and is held in the same light, strength and representation as Police and Fire.
  3. Standardization across the country, less fragmentation among EMS providers

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

  1. Education, training, focused work on reimbursement for Ambulance services throughout the country
  2. Communications to its members and growing strength in numbers and voices across the country
  3. Moving EMS forward Continuing to make our voices heard loud & clear, that we are here to stay. keeping up with all the healthcare changes with reforming EMS for the future.

Region V (2)

Region V Director—2 Candidates

Region 5

AZ, CA, NV, UT, OR, ID, WY, MT, WA, HI, AK, NM, CO

Chris Archuleta

Chief Executive Officer
Superior Ambulance Service, Inc.
Albuquerque, NM

Candidate Statement

Over the past several year’s I’ve been voted to represent you in Region 5 both as an Alternate and as a Director to the Board of Directors. This has been a great experience working with the AAA Board of Directors. As a Director I’ve seen how much the Board of Directors are involved with issues that affect our industry at a Regional and at a National level, and how important it is to have active and members on the Board that are well versed with our industry.

In the past year’s we’ve discussed changes and upcoming changes within our industry that affect us daily; changes in Federal regulations such as reimbursement, increased audits, Cost Reporting, and CMS expecting more and more from us as providers. Although we as an industry all feel the effects of the demands being placed upon us, I see that many of us as medium and small providers have a difficult time having our voices heard and us trying to stay compliant while trying to stay fiscally viable. Many of us as small and medium providers live and operate within the communities we serve, we are vested to our communities. Day-to-day we’re so entrenched and obligated to our communities that we don’t always have the time to voice our concerns to those handing down the regulations that will affect our business. It’s therefore important that we have someone representing us, someone who knows how these regulations will affect us. My concern is your concern, as many of the ambulance services in this country are small and medium sized services, and just like you, I have everyday concerns as I too am a medium sized provider, that when new regulations are handed down upon us, I wonder and worry how it will effect my business.

As your Region 5 Director I want to involve myself as much as possible in voicing the concerns of our industry and how some regulation changes can affect the ambulance industry, and how the effects can impact the smaller and medium services. As your Region 5 Director I will continue to represent the small and medium providers within our industry. I’m again seeking your support and your vote so that I can continue in representing you as a Director for Region 5. Thank you for your consideration and your vote.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. EMT Wellness and EMT Fatigue
2. Medicare / Medicaid reimbursement
3. The lack of private sector paramedics available for employment, Recruitment and Retention

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. CMS regulatory issues and Medicare reimbursement
2. New Legislative mandates regarding Cost Reporting
3. Surprise Billing / Balance Billing Legislation


JD Fuiten

Owner & President
Metro West Ambulance Service, Inc.
Hillsboro, OR

Candidate Statement

Out of hospital healthcare continues to change and evolve and create challenges for all providers, whether you are in a rural or urban setting. Because of my (almost) 66 years of experience in EMS, and owning companies in both settings, I am uniquely positioned to face these challenges head on. I understand the complexities of EMS in any setting and will work with the entire membership to make sure your voice is heard. I look forward to serving the members of the AAA am energized to engage our membership and elected officials in meaningful conversations that will ultimately have a positive impact on how we all provide EMS to the communities we are privileged to serve.

Top 3 Issues in Emergency Healthcare

1. Cost Reporting
2. Reimbursement
3. Workforce recruitment and retention

Top 3 Priorities for AAA

1. Reimbursement
2. Collaboration with other groups and associations
3. Workforce recruitment and retention


Meet the Ethics Committee Candidates

Questions? Please contact acamas@ambulance.org for assistance.