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January 26, 2011
Toronto Emergency Medical Services announces new chief
City of Toronto Emergency Medical Services's (EMS) Chief Bruce Farr announced yesterday that the current Deputy Chief, Paul Raftis, will be appointed Chief of Toronto Emergency Medical Services when Chief Farr retires on March 1, 2011.

Paul Raftis has worked at Toronto EMS since 1991. Starting as a Paramedic, he rose quickly in the service assuming roles of increased leadership in the organization. His latest promotion was in January 2010, when he was appointed Deputy Chief of Operations. In this recent role, he oversaw a staff of over 930 and a budget totalling $112 million.

In her announcement to staff yesterday, Deputy City Manager Sue Corke said, she was impressed with “Paul’s grasp of critical issues, his energy, intelligence and interpersonal skills.”

Chief Farr echoed the Deputy City Manager’s comments, “Paul’s thorough understanding of the short and long-term issues facing our service, as well as his vision and courage to lead our team to face these challenges, makes him an ideal choice for this role. I look forward to seeing the continued growth and success of our service under his leadership.”

“I am truly honoured and proud to lead the women and men of this world-class organization," said Deputy Chief, Paul Raftis. "Our team is passionate about patient care and focused on providing an outstanding experience to every person we help in the community. I couldn’t be happier accepting this new role.”

As the new Chief of Toronto EMS, he will lead one of the largest emergency medical services in Canada. He will oversee a staff of 1,200, including Paramedics, Emergency Medical Dispatchers and support staff, all supported by a fleet of 155 ambulances in 45 ambulance stations.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. Toronto's government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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Media contact: Peter Macintyre, Commander Community Safeguard Services, 416-392-2069,

Biography - Paul Raftis, new Chief of Toronto EMS

On March 1, 2011, Paul Raftis will become Chief, Toronto Emergency Medical Services.

Raftis has been with Toronto EMS for 20 years, beginning his career as a Paramedic in 1991. As an Advanced Care Paramedic (ACP), he was one of the first ACPs assigned to the Emergency Task Force (ETF), tactical paramedic program.

Raftis began his management career as an Operations Supervisor in 1999. Since then, he has earned promotions to several positions throughout Toronto EMS, including serving in both the Deputy Chief of Operations and the Chief’s Office. He managed the Special Operations Unit as well as the Central Ambulance Communications Centre. With each role, he broadened his understanding of the short and
long-term issues facing the division and brought his keen intelligence and grasp of the issues to solve many organizational challenges. His latest promotion was in January 2010, when Paul became the Deputy Chief of Operations.

As Deputy Chief, he oversaw the delivery of emergency and non-emergency medical care in the City of Toronto, leading a team of 930 staff with an operating budget totalling $112 million. The professional team includes Primary, Advanced and Critical Care Paramedics. He was also responsible for the Special Operations teams that provide paramedic service in unique and challenging environments. These teams include Critical Care Transport Unit (CCTU), Primary Care Transport Unit (PCTU), Emergency Response Unit (ERU), Emergency Support Unit (ESU), Public Safety Unit (PSU), Emergency Task Force (ETF), Heavy Urban Search and Rescue Unit (HUSAR), Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosive Unit (CBRNE), and the bike and marine units.

In his new role, Raftis will lead an emergency medical service providing world-class, pre-hospital emergency care to residents and visitors to the City of Toronto. Toronto EMS has a staff of over 1,200 which includes Paramedics, Emergency Medical Dispatchers and Support Staff. They respond to more than 315,000 emergency medical calls per year supported by a fleet of 155 ambulances in 45 ambulance stations across the city.

Raftis holds a Bachelor of Health Science Degree from Charles Sturt University and an Ambulance and Emergency Care Certificate from Fanshawe College.



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