6-County Legion Taps EMT of Year

UTICA, June 17, 2011 – Philip Taurisano, a Utica paramedic who participated in an international exchange, has been named Emergency Medical Technician of the Year by the American Legion's Fifth District, encompassing Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Oswego, Oneida and Onondaga counties. The selection means he will now be considered for the Legion's state EMT of the year award.

Philip Taurisano

State Sen. Joe Griffo and Fifth District Law-and-Order Chair Paul Wojcik presented the award during the recent Oneida County Legion Convention in Lee Center. Taurisano was nominated by Utica Post 229, which honored him last October as its EMT of the Year.

Taurisano is a firefighter/paramedic who has been with the Utica Fire Department since Sept. 22, 2000. Wojcik noted that Fire Chief Russell Brooks referred to Taurisano as an outstanding paramedic "who has demonstrated dedication and courage every day he is on the job."

Taurisano has been active in an exchange program with Polish paramedics. In 2008 he traveled to Poland and competed in the Polish International Paramedic Competition, taking first place. In 2007 he completed a Tactical Operational Medical Support Course in Texas; then, in 2008, he took and passed the Sequential Trauma Emergency Preparedness class in Cairo, Egypt, and in 2009 he completed the Critical Care Emergency Medical Transport Program at the University of Maryland.

“If you’re having chest pain, this is the guy you want there,” Chief Brooks quipped of Taurisano.