2013 Outstanding EMS Administrator Award Winner

Vernovai_PictureChris Vernovai

Click here to congratulate Chris!

Chris Vernovai has shown an unwavering and endless commitment to Highland County as a Paramedic provider, an educator, role model, citizen and volunteer.

Highland County Volunteer Rescue Squad (HCVRS) is located an extremely rural community with a very limited pool of community volunteers willing to dedicate the necessary amount of time and commitment to provide professional quality EMS to its community.

Since his election as Captain in early 2013, there has been a sudden and dramatic change in HCVRS.  Morale as well as community opinion has taken a positive turn. 

  In the past 4 months, agency membership has increased more than 35% and there continues to be strong interest from the community.

Chris has been actively engaged in agency operations to include: updating HCVRS’s policies and procedures and implementing changes to enhance the organization’s structure and controls.  Change is not easy, so Chris has done his best to respect and include the senior members that have many years of local experience while encouraging new and updated policies and equipment to be considered, allowing the squad to best serve our community.

Reaching out to welcome an open line of communication between local officials—some for the first time in Highland County—from our Board of Supervisors, Sheriff Department, Fire Departments, LEPAC and civic groups, to working with surrounding Fire and EMS agencies as Mutual Aid resources, CSEMS, OEMS and VAVRS, Chris has opened the door to new ideas and inter-agency cooperation.  Chris stresses the importance of sharing and learning from everyone’s experience—by doing so Chris has created an environment of teamwork within the public safety community in Highland County and surrounding jurisdictions.

A career fire fighter and NREMT-Paramedic at the Navy Information Operations Command, Sugar Grove in West Virginia, Chris is limited in the amount of time he can dedicate to HCVRS.  However limited his time, Chris has a drive and ambition few can muster.  Chris works a 24 on, 24 off schedule which leaves him little time for family and personal time.  Most of his ‘off time’ is dedicated to HCVRS business as well as answering calls. His time has been filled with countless hours of communication and preparation of providing, organizing and attending business meetings,  CE classes, skills drills, equipment maintenance, ordering supplies, Q&As and muchm, much more.

HCVRS members are proud to have Chris Vernovai represent HCVRS and seek to have his dedication and commitment to their agency and the Highland County community at large publicly recognized through this award.