Stronger Together

We are excited to announce the 2024 Director's Conference dates and location.

Plan to join us April 9-11, 2024 in beautiful Cedar City, Utah.  More details will come as we continue our planning!



April 9 - 11, 2024

Tuesday: Full Day Leadership
Add-On (Optional)
Opening Dinner 7:00pm
Wednesday & Thursday :
9:00 AM - 4:30 PM Speakers & Presentations



Cedar City, Utah

SUU Hunter Conference Center
405 W University Blvd, Cedar City, UT 84720

Hotel: La Quinta Inn & Suites
1377 S Main St, Cedar City, UT
$89/night room block rate



Leadership Add-on:  $50
Active Members: $75
Associate Members: $75
Agency Affiliated
Non-Members: $200
Non-Affiliated Non-Members: $275

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Location: SUU, Hunter Conference Center
Time Activity
9:00 AM Leadership Concepts - One Day Refresher
Matthew Philbrick, SafeTechSolutions
1:00 PM Lunch Served
5:00 PM Leadership Dismissal
7:00 PM State of the Association &
Director of the Year Award
Significant others traveling with you are invited to attend dinner.
Kevin Presentation

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Location: SUU, Hunter Conference Center
Vendor Exhibition Day
Time Activity
8:00 AM Conference Registration Opens
9:00 AM Opening Comments
Von Johnson
9:15 AM Success From The Field
Shea M. Swenson, Managing Partner
Stonebriar Financial
10:15 AM BREAK
10:45 AM From Burnout to Breakthrough:  Identifying and Conquering Stress/Trauma-Induced Challenges
Melanie Boyack, Trauma Consultant and Speaker
11:45 AM Improving Data Collection and Quality Improvement in Rural EMS Agencies
Panel Discussion Led by Felicia Alvarez
12:45 PM LUNCH
2:00 PM Customer Service in Healthcare
Maigen Zobell, Uintah Basin Medical Center
3:30 PM Living an Impactful Life
Tammy Barton, Garfield County Ambulance
4:30 PM Dismiss

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Location: SUU Hunter Conference Center
Vendor Exhibition Day
Time Activity
8:30 AM Conference Registration Opens
9:00 AM REMSDAU Association Meeting
10:30 AM BREAK
11:00 AM Medical Directorship and Physician Involvement
Dr. Peter Taillac, MD FACEP
Medical Director, Office of EMS and Preparedness, Utah Department of Health and Human Services
12:00 PM LUNCH
1:00 PM State Updates
Darin Bushman, Division Director
Bureau of EMS
2:30 PM Public Engagement in EMS
Panel discussion led by:
Andy Smith, Director, Grand County EMS
Eric Hales, Fire Chief, Wasatch Fire
3:30 PM Closing Remarks by President Johnson
4:00 PM Dismiss

presentation details


Leadership Concepts - One Day Refresher

Matthew Philbrick, MBA, MSML, NRP

Leadership Concepts – One Day Refresher presents the fundamentals of leadership based on curriculum across SafeTech Solutions’ acclaimed EMS Leadership Academy and Supervisors Academy. The session is a review of concepts, tools, strategies, and principles all attendees have been introduced to previously, delivered in an engaging format. Drawing on a blend of social and organizational psychology, adaptive and transformational leadership theory, human development, and ongoing research in leadership teams, culture, and engagement, the session offers audience members a chance to reflect on past training, refresh and sharpen their understanding of basic concepts and leadership tools, rekindle the motivational fire for current and emerging leadership challenges, and lay a common foundation for conversations and work ahead. Topics covered will be led by the attendees and the presentation will be customized to the concepts requested in the session. These topics may include: Addressing challenges from a leadership lens (as opposed to a management lens); using influence in a manner that creates high performance and high engagement; Conflict and difficult conversations; and how to cultivate a sustainable and healthy practice of leadership.

Though presented as a “refresher,” the session begins with today’s challenges and issues, and addresses what directors of rural agencies in Utah deal with on a regular basis. Attendees are invited to reflect on their own challenges and places in their leadership journeys. The session reviews a deep understanding of the basics of human motivation, organizational culture, and employee engagement that provide the lens through which attendees might see their work ahead. Attendees embark from the session reinvigorated to see the specific skills, talents, actions, and behaviors each need to develop and hone.

As a seasoned professional speaker and group facilitator, Matt Philbrick brings over two decades of experience in the emergency response field. Throughout his career, he has played integral roles in patient care and leadership within the EMS industry, and is currently leading catastrophic event response, crisis resource delivery, psychoeducation, and wellness outreach for the nation's largest EMS Provider.  In addition to his national responsibilities, Matt actively engages with local EMS initiatives in his home state of Oregon. Matt is the Chair of the Oregon EMS for Children Committee and Vice Chair of the Oregon Senior EMS Advisory Council. He also served as Branch Chief in a 2021 FEMA deployment requested by Oregon, which saw effective response provided to southern and central parts of the state.

Matt has been featured at EMS Today and EMS World and is a sought-after public lecturer. In 2020, Matt was honored as one of the "Top 40 under 40" EMS leaders by the American Ambulance Association. He serves additionally as a consultant for the national EMS consulting firm SafeTech Solutions, which specializes in EMS assessment, strategic planning, and front-line Leadership Development.


Success from the field

Shea M. Swenson,  Managing Partner
Stonebriar Financial

Shea is a managing partner of Stonebriar Financial. He is a Registered Financial Consultant and uses his wealth preservation and tax planning experience to help his clients find tax and risk efficient retirement and legacy solutions for their families.

He is the lead speaker at the firm’s informational seminars on Taxes in Retirement, Social Security and Estate Planning.

Shea has spent the most recent portion of his career as a partner in a top private wealth management firm based in Orlando, Florida. That time and experience in Florida (the retirement capital of the world) gave him the skills and expertise needed to become a leading expert in taxation during retirement, how to maximize Social Security benefits, and how to use estate planning to reduce taxation. He has brought this expertise to his home state of Utah as a founding member of Stonebriar Financial. He holds insurance licenses in Florida, Utah and South Carolina.

Shea’s ultimate passion has been in his philanthropy efforts throughout his life. He founded the “Swenson Foundation” in honor of his grandparents, Morris and Connie Swenson, who raised him. The Swenson Foundation gives leadership awards and scholarships to the Blanding, Utah community where Shea grew up. He recently launched his second non-profit with his partners called “The Stonebriar Foundation” whose mission is to provide solutions to fight the lack of financial literacy currently plaguing our society.

Shea has been nationally recognized in major publications including Forbes, Wealth Insider and New York Today.


From Burnout to Breakthrough:  Identifying and Conquering Stress/Trauma-Induced Challenges

Melanie Boyack, Trauma Consultant and Speaker

  • Gain insights into the underlying factors causing stress and trauma in their professional and personal lives.
  • Develop strategies for identifying and overcoming burnout-related challenges.
  • Learn practical techniques to manage and reduce stress and trauma in various life aspects, fostering personal growth and professional resilience.

Melanie Boyack is a retired therapist who specialized in treating trauma, addiction, PTSD, depression, and anxiety. She holds Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Social Work from the University of Utah and has undergone additional training in EMDR, TF-CBT, ART, MBB, and PE for trauma treatment.

Notable certifications and experiences include her Prolonged Exposure training at the University of Pennsylvania, where she partnered with General Burton to honor Gold Star Families. Melanie has also served as a trauma therapist in the psychiatric military unit at Salt Lake Behavioral Health Hospital and holds a CITI Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative Social and Behavioral Research Certification.

Melanie’s unique skill set is further exemplified by her work with military units, SWAT teams, hostage situations, first responders, and emergency crews. She has been instrumental in debriefing teams following critical incidents during some of Utah’s most challenging disasters, including airplane and helicopter crashes, avalanche rescues, and collaboration with emergency ski patrol teams.

Beyond her clinical work, Melanie collaborates with executives, corporations, employees, and departments nationwide, offering her insights to bolster leadership, instill inspiration, and drive positive change through her impactful public speaking engagements.

REMSDAU Photos Website

Improving Data Collection and Quality Improvement in Rural EMS Agencies

Panel Discussion led by Felicia Alvarez
Trauma Consultant and Speaker

Collected data is used for a variety of reasons including to improve patient care, get the most out of billing and to document what transpired in a court of law. But have you struggled with good reports? Proper documentation?  Hear from your peers on how they, as part of a rural EMS grant, have managed to improve documentation, reduce documentation errors, get reports in earlier, and work happily with the state data manager (most of the time).

Participating Agencies:
Cedar Mountain Fire Protection Agency
Daggett County Ambulance
Juab County EMS
Mountain West Ambulance
Millard County Ambulance
Uintah Basin EMS
San Juan County EMS
Tremonton City Fire
Park City Fire

maigen zobell

911: Growing a Culture of Care through Healing & Purpose

Maigen Zobell, Vice President
Uintah Basin Healthcare

EMS is about people… the people whom you serve, and the people who devote their lives to this service. It’s more than just a job, it’s a calling… and it can be a roller coaster. As an EMT, you often serve those in their most personal, challenging, and vulnerable moments. Handling those you serve with genuine compassion creates moments that matter. These moments aren’t reflected on charts, seen in the headlines, or celebrated. They are quiet, personal examples of human kindness and selfless humanity.

Connecting with others on this level requires energy and vulnerability that goes far beyond the required training. It’s been said that you can teach someone a skill, but you cannot teach someone to be kind. In the field of Emergency Medical Services, skills matter, but so does compassion. During an emergency, how do we take the time to focus on a culture of care? How do we provide a healing focus, and how do we keep our “WHY”?

In this presentation, we’ll discuss:

9 ways to grow a culture of care,

1 healing focus, and

1 reason WHY.

As John Hench (Walt Disney Imagineering) once said, “What’s our success formula? It’s the attention to infinite detail, the little things, the minor, picky points that others just don’t want to take the time, money or effort to do”. Sometimes the little things really are big things.

Maigen Zobell is a business professional with 25 years of experience in management - leading teams in the fields of Marketing & Public Relations, Customer Service, Volunteer Services, healthcare support services and the patient experience.

At the age of 15, Maigen had a personal experience that ultimately defined what she would do with her life. She immediately began working as an Intern in the healthcare field, gaining experiences in multiple areas as she defined her focus. Fast forward… she became a first-generation college graduate and eventually landed exactly where she was meant to be.

Maigen has implemented comprehensive customer service programs to enhance the organization’s image and position within the marketplace, and more importantly, to improve the overall patient experience.

Maigen was recognized as “Business Woman of the Year” in 2016 by her community, and received the “Extra Mile” award from the Roosevelt City Mayor and City Council in 2019 for her involvement with the community and the impact made on the hospital.

Maigen currently serves as Vice President for Uintah Basin Healthcare, Utah’s largest rural independent healthcare system based in Roosevelt, Utah.

tammy barton

Living an Impactful Life

Tammy Barton, A-EMT, EMT Instructor, Training Officer
Garfield County EMS Director

What does that even mean?  Glad you asked…It means, TO LIVE A LIFE THAT HAS SIGNIFICANCE IN THE LIVES OF OTHERS.  Wow, that seems like a lot of responsibility and work, OR, does it?  Don’t we all want to somehow leave a positive mark on this world when we exit it?  At least I’m hoping all of us do!  If you’re at this conference I can guarantee you have already made an impact on many lives.  One of those lives being my own!  My goal by the end of this lecture/talk/discourse/speech/ spiel, is that you will have a clearer idea of what ‘Living Impactful’ means.  How important it can be to not only those you impact but to your life as well, and maybe even give you a few ideas of how to be more positively impactful to those lives you do touch.  Oh and one last thing--I really asked to have a time slot this conference because as you all know I’m retiring soon (you all tired of hearing me say that yet?) and this will be the last REMSDAU Conference for me, and I didn’t want to leave without telling each of you how much IMPACT you have had on my life, both professionally and personally.

Tammy has been an EMT since 1992, and an EMS Instructor since 1994.  In 1994 she was hired as the Training Officer for Garfield County EMS, a part-time gig.  In 1999 she added Director to her title, becoming full time.

She has a passion for all things EMS, including teaching EMS to others. This love of teaching also led her to become an EMSC (Emergency Medical Services for Children) Coordinator.

Another of her passions is the Well-being of those that serve in EMS.  She became a member of the State CISM (Critical Incident Stress Management) Team in 2001 and has served in many Executive rolls on the team, including EMS Peer Representative, Regional Coordinator Representative, and President.

Tammy served on the State of Utah EMS Committee from 2002-2010, three of those years as Chairperson.  She believes in strong working relationships not only with those in her County but statewide.

She was a Founding member of REMSDAU (Rural Emergency Medical Services Directors Association of Utah).  This organization serves to better Rural EMS Directors, which in turn makes for better EMT’s!

Although her passion for EMS has led to some recognition and awards, she feels her true reward is the daily satisfaction that comes from serving others and getting to meet and rub shoulders with the best people in the world, her fellow EMT’s.  One of her favorite quotes is from Chad Hymas, “Your life never was for your benefit anyway.”

Tammy lives in Panguitch with her favorite retired EMT, her husband Neal, whom she had the privilege to serve side by side with for 24 years.  They have 4 Children, 3 that currently serve as EMT’s alongside their mom in Garfield County.

taillac picture

Medical Directorship and Physician Involvement

Dr. Peter P. Taillac, MD FACEP
Medical Director
Office of Emergency Medical Services and Preparedness
Utah Department of Health and Human Services

Dr. Taillac, along with other colleagues started the JeevaRaksha project in 2014 and was involved in the design, development, piloting and training of trainers for the comprehensive Emergency Care Life Support (c-ECLS) course.  He has taught this course in Morocco, Ghana and Uzbekistan.  He is a past member, Board of Directors, National Association of EMS Physicians, USA.

His many research publications and chapters in text books of emergency medicine, have made him an invited speaker at multiple U.S. and international conferences including the AIIMS Annual EMS Conference.

Area of Interest and Expertise: EMS (prehospital care), EMS education, EMS / trauma systems development, disaster preparedness, hemorrhage control, cardiac arrest, and time-critical illnesses and injuries.   

Dr Taillac has been working in India since 2008:  Developed EMT and Paramedic Programs for Fortis Escorts Cardiac Institute in New Delhi to provide emergency medical services for 2018 Commonwealth Games, Delhi.

eric hales 2

Public Engagement in EMS

Eric Hales, Wasatch Fire

Andy Smith, Grand County EMS