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The Governor of Virginia’s Award for Outstanding EMS Prehospital Educator for 2024 is given to a local EMS provider



Pulaski County, Virginia – Many years of commitment, many volunteer hours, and innumerable students instructed… The effort paid off, as a 2024 Governor of Virginia’s Award for Outstanding EMS Prehospital Educator was given to an EMS practitioner serving our hometowns.

“I really didn’t believe it when they told me I won,” said Michael Garnett.

Michael Garnett has 22 years of experience as an EMS educator and 35 years of experience working in the Roanoke and New River Valleys.

“The education is being able to derive our providers the competence and confidence that they need to adequately work with patients,” explained Garnett.

With this honor, Garnett is acknowledged as a teacher who “consistently demonstrates excellence and a dedication to the education of prehospital EMS providers” and who “exemplifies outstanding teaching and leadership qualities.” Governor Glenn Youngkin presented him with the honor at a ceremony held in the Governor’s Mansion in Richmond, to which he was invited.

“It was really an honor because I never expected to be in the Governor’s Mansion and I never expected to actually win the award itself. But I have to say that it was definitely a lifetime event,” said Garnett.

According to Garnett’s colleagues, a mere 2% of EMS are certified as educators.

“It’s a very small number of people putting in the time and effort and have the dedication to even become an educator, and to reach the level of excellence that Mike has done” said Nathaniel Davis, the Administrative Captain for Pulaski County Public Safety.

It is an honor for the county to recognize its own. “It’s just confirmation that some of the best and the brightest come from Southwestern Virginia,” stated Pulaski County Administrator Jonathan Sweet. It seems fitting that some of the greatest and brightest are grooming the greatest and brightest of the future.

Garnett is eager to carry on with his efforts in the field.

“It actually gives me incentive to keep going forward and to be able to keep doing what I’m doing,” he said. “Just being able to keep going forward with the progression of EMS education and adding my little bit of a footprint to what these providers learn and what they’re able to do.”


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