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Pittsburgh Bureau of EMS Holds Swearing-In and Promotions Ceremony

PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Bureau of EMS held a promotions ceremony in Council Chambers on Friday, October 13, as nine members advanced to the next stage of their prehospital careers.

Dontay Parrish and Ashton Szymarek were sworn in as EMTs.

Adam Beaver, Dominick Lazaro, and Derrick Rodgers were promoted to the rank of Paramedic.

Brian Havaran was promoted to the rank of District Chief.

Jennifer McDermott-Grubb and Paul Sabol were promoted to the rank of Division Chief. Of note, McDermott-Grubb is the first female Division Chief in the history of Pittsburgh EMS.

Jeffrey Tremel was promoted to the rank of Deputy Chief.

Dr. Lenny Weiss, Medical Director for the City of Pittsburgh, highlighted to the gathered EMS personnel that they are in a challenging time to be prehospital providers, but that Pittsburgh needs the work they do every day.

“You, as EMS professionals, are vital to our city and we need you to do this work more than ever. You provide access to emergency care to those who struggle, support people with mental health needs, treat acute and chronic problems on the streets, and tend to illness and injury during the scariest moments of our patients’ lives. You are patient advocates—on you they depend.”

Chief Amera Gilchrist praised her staff for their devotion to the field of prehospital care and emphasized that the day was a celebration of hard work and perseverance.

 “Today is a good day for Pittsburgh EMS. You are the silent heroes who work tirelessly to save lives, often in the most challenging and difficult circumstances. I honor each of you as you begin this next stage in your careers,” said Chief Gilchrist.

The Department of Public Safety Director, Lee Schmidt, spoke directly to those being sworn-in and promoted.

“To our promotees, you’ve shown exemplary dedication to field of Emergency Medical Services. Through your knowledge, skills, and unyielding determination you’ve demonstrated your ability to make split-second decisions, provide life-saving interventions, and offer solace to those in distress. Your promotion is a testament to your unwavering commitment to excellence in the face of adversity,” said Director Schmidt.

Before the Honorable Mayor Ed Gainey administered the Oath of Office, he acknowledged that these promotions would not be possible without the support of each crew members’ family and emphasized that each promotee had recognized the call to embrace greater responsibility and excellence.

A hearty congratulations to all those who were sworn-in and promoted in the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services!



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Emily Bourne
Public Information Officer
Public Safety