Courageous. Committed. Ready. Dependable.

These words characterize the 86,000 licensed or certified EMS providers in California. These individuals exemplify these traits on a daily basis by rendering assistance when it is most crucial and diligently upholding the efficiency of the EMS system. Nevertheless, each year, specific individuals among this group shine the brightest, either due to exceptional circumstances or their extraordinary dedication and effort.

 Nominations for the 2024 Awards will open in June. We encourage EMS providers, supervisors, and managers to submit nominations for individuals they believe are deserving of recognition


2023 EMS Award Recipients

2023 EMS Awards – Photos 



Nominate an EMS Hero

Nominate an EMS Hero


EMSA will open nominations for the 2024 California EMS Awards in June. We encourage EMS providers, supervisors, and managers to submit nominations for individuals they believe are deserving of recognition.

Nominations must be received by December 31, 2024.

2024 California EMS Awards Nominations

EMSA will accept nominations for the annual awards on a continuous basis. However, all nominations for the 2024 awards program must be submitted by December 31, 2024.

Become an EMS Awards Sponsor!

Become an EMS Awards Sponsor!

The California EMS Awards Program is run without incurring expenses for the State of California. Funding for the event comes from two sources: the sale of dinner tickets (with award recipients and their guests hosted) and sponsorship contributions. The event(s) could not be conducted without the invaluable support received from sponsorships within the EMS community, which plays a critical role in making these awards programs possible.

Select your sponsorship tier:

Title: $20,000      Platinum: $10,000      Gold: $5,000      Silver: $3,500      Bronze: $2,500

$20,000 – At the top-tier sponsorship level, which grants the exclusive privilege of naming the event, the title sponsor plays a central role in our event’s identity. As the event’s namesake (e.g., ‘2023 EMS Awards presented by XYZ Corporation’), the title sponsor receives prominent branding exposure and comprehensive promotional opportunities throughout the entire event, including the privilege of presenting a prestigious Award of the Year. The title sponsor assumes responsibility for directly covering the expenses associated with the beverage package at the venue.
In addition, as part of the Title Sponsorship package, we are pleased to extend eight event tickets, and we’re excited to announce that the title sponsor’s logo will be prominently featured on the event’s challenge coin as a lasting token of their support.

$10,000 – Platinum sponsors are key supporters and will enjoy prominent acknowledgment, including logo placement on event materials, prime positioning of banners and signage, and the opportunity to present a prestigious award of their choosing. Platinum sponsors will also receive six event tickets.

$5,000 – Gold sponsors are acknowledged as significant backers of the event and will enjoy advantages like having their logo prominently featured on promotional materials. Gold sponsors will also receive four event tickets.

$3,500 – Silver sponsors receive recognition through logo placement on event materials and two event tickets.

$2,500 – Bronze sponsors are acknowledged as event supporters and may receive recognition through logo placement on select materials.

Aside from supporting a commendable cause, sponsors are acknowledged for their contributions through various means, which encompass:

  1. Verbal acknowledgment during the awards program.
  2. Prominent placement of the sponsor’s logo on the event website.
  3. Promotion on social media platforms.
  4. Immortalization of their sponsorship in an event video posted online.
Award Categories

The California EMS Awards Program celebrates exceptional advocacy, meritorious deeds, acts of heroism, innovative solutions, and novel approaches that enhance EMS in the state. It also acknowledges distinctive and impactful contributions made by a diverse range of individuals, including EMS personnel, physicians, nurses, EMTs, other healthcare providers, local authorities, members of law enforcement, community members, and first responders. These awards aim to commend noteworthy accomplishments by certified and/or licensed EMS providers.
To submit a nomination, please specify the nominee’s connection to the EMS system, detail the nature of the services or acts that merit recognition, and include relevant supporting documentation where applicable.

List of Individual Awards

Medal of Valor
EMS Cross
Distinguished Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal
Lifesaving Medal
Community Service Award
Inter-service EMS Recognition Medal
Civilian Award for EMS



Medal of Valor

This award is bestowed upon an EMT who has demonstrated exceptional personal valor or heroism in the course of providing emergency medical care, leading to the preservation of a life under extremely challenging conditions and/or in extraordinary situations.

EMS Cross

This award is presented to a uniformed EMT whose actions and achievements exemplify the highest level of excellence in EMS over an extended duration. It stands as the highest honor that can be bestowed without the presence of extreme conditions or extraordinary circumstances.

Distinguished Service Medal

This award acknowledges an individual for their distinguished service or noteworthy accomplishments that have significantly impacted statewide EMS throughout an extended period. A maximum of ten Distinguished Service Medals will be granted in any given year.

Meritorious Service Medal

This distinction is conferred upon an individual in recognition of their outstanding service or exceptional contributions to the field of EMS. The award also honors an EMT who has displayed extraordinary dedication and gone above and beyond the call of duty during a specific EMS emergency or event.

Lifesaving Medal

This honor is awarded to an EMS provider who, while in an off-duty or volunteer capacity, makes an exceptionally remarkable contribution to initiatives that lead to the preservation of a life.

Community Service Award

This accolade is presented to an EMT who has demonstrated an exceptional dedication to the non-patient care facets of their community’s EMS system, with a particular focus on EMS Public Information, Education, and Relations. A maximum of ten Community Service Awards will be granted in any given year.

Inter-service EMS Recognition Medal

This award commends exceptional acts of heroism, extraordinary service, or noteworthy achievements by individuals who are not EMTs, including police officers, firefighters, lifeguards, dispatchers, and various public or private safety officers. This recognition is bestowed upon those who have provided outstanding or exceptional support during specific EMS emergencies, events, or operations.

Civilian Award for EMS

This award acknowledges the exceptional contributions of individuals who are not certified or healthcare providers but have demonstrated outstanding service in the midst of an EMS emergency. These awards are granted based on the level of patient outcome, the challenges posed by extreme conditions, or extraordinary circumstances encountered during the emergency situation.


List of Statewide Awards

EMT of the Year
EMS Educator of the Year
EMS Medical Director of the Year
EMS Administrator of the Year

EMT of the Year Award

The EMT of the Year Award is a prestigious recognition that celebrates the exemplary contributions and outstanding dedication of Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT-I, EMT-II, and EMT-Paramedic) who have not only demonstrated exceptional quality of patient care but have also showcased unwavering commitment to their communities. This award stands as a symbol of the highest honor within the EMS profession, highlighting the profound impact an EMT can have on patient well-being and the broader community.

Candidates eligible for this accolade include any EMT-I or EMT-II holding statewide certification, as well as licensed EMT-Paramedics. To merit nomination for this esteemed award, individuals must have transcended the ordinary in their service to the EMS field. Nominations can be submitted by anyone who has witnessed the nominee’s remarkable qualities and contributions to the local EMS service or system.

The criteria for receiving this award are exacting, as it is reserved for those who have gone far above and beyond the call of duty. Nominees should embody qualities such as exceptional clinical skills, unwavering compassion, and an unrelenting commitment to improving patient outcomes. Furthermore, their contributions to the local EMS service or system should be nothing short of transformative. To further underscore the significance of their impact, letters of support from fellow EMTs, local EMS directors, and community officials are heavily weighed in the evaluation process. Receiving the EMT of the Year Award is a testament to an individual’s extraordinary service and lasting legacy within the EMS profession, a recognition that is not only prestigious but a true reflection of their dedication and impact.

EMS Educator of the Year Award

The EMS Educator of the Year Award stands as a distinguished accolade, spotlighting the outstanding achievements of an exceptional EMS educator who has demonstrated remarkable proficiency as a teacher and has left an indelible mark on the EMS education landscape within the state. This award recognizes the profound impact educators can have on shaping the future of EMS professionals, making it one of the highest honors in the field.

Eligibility for this prestigious award extends to active EMS educators and EMS training officers who have devoted their careers to the development and mentorship of future EMS practitioners. Nominations for this esteemed accolade are open to anyone who has been inspired or influenced by the nominee’s exceptional teaching prowess and their significant contributions to EMS education in the state.

To qualify for this award, nominees must exemplify excellence in EMS education through a distinguished teaching record or transformative contributions to EMS training programs. The nominations should encompass a detailed account of the nominee’s background, educational philosophy, and professional achievements. It should explicitly outline why the nominee deserves this prestigious recognition, highlighting their innovative teaching methods, their ability to inspire students, and their tangible impact on the EMS education ecosystem.

The EMS Educator of the Year Award is not only a tribute to an individual’s exceptional dedication to educating the next generation of EMS professionals but also an acknowledgment of their profound influence in shaping the future of the EMS field. This award serves as a symbol of honor and gratitude for their tireless efforts and unwavering commitment to advancing EMS education.

EMS Administrator of the Year Award

The EMS Administrator of the Year Award is a prestigious accolade that pays tribute to the exceptional contributions and leadership of an EMS system administrator who has made a significant impact at the local, regional, or statewide level within the dynamic field of EMS. This award stands as a beacon of recognition, celebrating the profound influence and dedication of individuals who play a pivotal role in the organization and management of EMS systems, particularly within the vibrant EMS landscape of California.

Eligibility for this prestigious award extends to local EMS administrators occupying positions in supervisory operations, planning, or management capacities within the state of California. To nominate a candidate for this esteemed honor, it is vital to highlight the nominee’s notable contributions, achievements, and their overarching role in the EMS ecosystem. The nomination should provide a comprehensive narrative that paints a vivid picture of why the nominee is deserving of this distinguished recognition.

The EMS Administrator of the Year Award is not merely a reflection of an individual’s professional achievements, but a testament to their unwavering commitment to advancing and enhancing the EMS system. Nominations should illuminate how the nominee has demonstrated outstanding leadership, exhibited exceptional vision and innovation, and exhibited a profound dedication to improving the quality and efficacy of EMS services in their respective domains. This award signifies not only a personal achievement but also a celebration of the positive impact an EMS administrator can have on the broader community and the well-being of patients served by the EMS system.


Special Recognition Ribbons

The EMS Authority authorizes the following decorations, although they are not bestowed during formal ceremonies. Individual EMTs who meet the specified qualifications are permitted to wear these decorations:

Educational Achievement Recognition

May be worn by an EMT who has completed an associate degree or higher from an accredited institution of higher learning.

Service Achievement Recognition

May be worn by an EMT who has completed 10 years of service. Numerals (2+) may be worn for every subsequent 10 years.

Clinical Excellence Award

Recognizes an EMT who provides noteworthy patient care and treatment during the course of their duties.


Contact Information

If you have any questions or need further information, please contact EMS Authority External Affairs at