LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) – Jon Swanson, executive director of MEMS, recently received the 2018 Excellence in Leadership Award at the Pinnacle EMS Conference in Phoenix, Arizona. 

The Pinnacle meeting is an opportunity for Emergency Medical Services leaders from around the nation to gather and discuss the challenges facing the industry, and recognize those who are making a difference in the profession.

“I am honored and humbled to receive this award,” Swanson said. “It is a testimony to the impactful, life-saving emergency work that the 325 MEMS professionals do on a daily basis in the communities we serve. I am privileged to work with these people every day.”

Additionally, on August 4, MEMS received the 2018 Advanced Life Support Service of the Year Award from the Arkansas Ambulance Association (AAA). The organization was praised for contributing 145 hours of community education in the areas of CPR, First Aid and Stop the Bleed, which is a program to train and equip people to help in a bleeding emergency until first responders arrive. 

“The fruits of their labor were revealed on July 1, 2017 when a mass shooting at the Power Ultra Lounge in downtown Little Rock left 28 people injured,” said Amanda Warren Newton, AAA Board Member. “Law enforcement officers were able to apply what they learned from MEMS Stop the Bleed training and save lives.” 

MEMS is a public, self-funded agency of the city of Little Rock, established in 1984, that serves communities throughout central Arkansas. 

Swanson, a retired United States Air Force Colonel, says there are significant differences in how EMS organizations across the nation are managed from clinical care to operational systems. The Pinnacle conference, he says, give the MEMS staff an opportunity to learn best practices from their peers in other places that can possibly be applied at home.

“The one thing all EMS operators have in common is a strong, personal commitment to help the people in our community in their time of need,” Swanson said. “MEMS is steadily 
growing, and we are looking for good people to enlist in our training academy and pursue a fulfilling career.” 

To learn more about career opportunities at MEMS, visit