Fitch & Associates, one of the world?s largest and most respected emergency-services consulting firms, recently announced that it has named Thomas Judge as the winner of the Pinnacle Exemplary Leadership Award.
Judge is executive director of LifeFlight of Maine, a position he has held since 1999. He has over 30 years of experience in the emergency medical services field.
Awarded in recognition of an EMS community leader?s efforts in advancing emergency and out-of-hospital care and transport, the Pinnacle Exemplary Leadership Award is presented annually at the Pinnacle EMS Leadership Forum for nationally changing the understanding and practice of the emergency care system.
Addressing an audience of some 400 EMS chiefs, CEOs and directors, Fitch & Associates partner Christine Zalar praised Judge?s accomplishments. “Mr. Judge has an unbelievable litany of activities, achievements and works in progress,” Zalar said. Judge serves as executive director of LifeFlight of Maine, a non-profit, hospital-based air- and ground critical-care system serving the entire state of Maine.
“Guided by Tom?s leadership, LifeFlight has implemented innovative programs to help evaluate and mitigate risk; established a statewide navigation and weather reporting infrastructure to create a safer aviation environment; and developed a medical training outreach program that helps strengthen the entire emergency healthcare network,” Zalar said.
Judge, who was taken by surprise with the award, noted how honored he was to be recognized by respected peers from across the country.
“The real recipients of this leadership award are the tremendous team of people that I work with at LifeFlight and at my local volunteer ambulance service in St. George,” he said. “They make a difference in people’s lives every day, and it’s a gift to work with such an amazing and talented group. We meet patients and families on the worst day of their life and it’s our job to try and give them that day back. To make that happen we need to continually find ways to measurably improve the emergency care system.”
“Passion for the patient has always been a driver for the tireless hours Tom spends serving his program, foundation, state, at the national level, and internationally on EMS and air medical related projects,” Zalar said. “His feverish drive for improving the system—all the moving parts—is contagious.”
Zalar also praised Judge for his work over the past four years as chair of the Association of Critical Care Transport (ACCT). “Tom?s leadership at ACCT is the most recent illustration of how his vision and unwavering intensity for developing a system to reliably and consistently provide safe, quality care for critical care patients,” she said.
Judge was also appointed by U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to serve on the National Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council, which advises the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on all EMS matters and related issues. He was appointed to the group of experts for a third term.