Kevin Mercer, who began his career with American Medical Response (AMR) as a field paramedic 27 years ago, has been named the company’s new director for the San Diego County/Imperial County region.
Mercer succeeds Michael Murphy, who announced his retirement last year, and will remain with AMR in a consulting role through 2022.
“Kevin is a dynamic, engaging and innovative leader who is widely respected at AMR and throughout the industry,” said Tom Wagner, president for AMR’s western group. “He has a proven track record of success here at AMR locally as well as nationally, having led incident management teams across the country, including New York and other communities that were severely impacted at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“As for Michael, there is simply no one in the field of emergency medical services who is more admired for his professionalism and integrity,” added Wagner. “Michael Murphy is the gold standard for what an EMS leader should be. Over his remarkable career, which has spanned more than four decades, he has transformed how emergency medical services are provided and mentored countless EMS professionals, including me. Our industry owes him a tremendous debt of gratitude.”
Overseeing Ambulance Service in SD
Most recently, Mercer served as AMR’s director of operations, a position that reported directly to Murphy. In that role, Mercer oversaw the provision of 911 ambulance service in the City of San Diego.
Additionally, Mercer maintained a seat on the AMR Pacific Region Incident Management Team, guiding operational and logistic needs to regional COVID-19 responses and medical support for wildfires.
“I am looking forward to working with our dedicated team of professionals to deliver the highest level of service possible,” said Mercer, who will oversee more than 700 EMTs, paramedics, dispatchers and support staff.
“We will pursue and apply the latest technology and system enhancements to continuously improve service and fulfill our mission to care for people in need,” Mercer added.
Responding to SD’s Biggest Tragedies
Murphy started with the company that would later become AMR in the late 1970s as a teenage EMT. During his career, he’s responded to some of San Diego’s biggest tragedies, including the PSA airline crash in North Park in 1978, the Cleveland Elementary School shooting in 1979 and the massive regional wildfires in 2003 and 2007.
“It’s been an incredible ride,” said Murphy, who was inspired to become an EMT by the 1970s pioneering television series “Emergency!,” which portrayed the real-life drama of those who devote their lives to saving others.
“I couldn’t have asked for a more rewarding career and am so grateful to have worked alongside some of the most dedicated, passionate and selfless people you’ll find anywhere,” Murphy said.
AMR currently provides emergency medical service throughout much of coastal North County, the East County, National City and across Imperial County.
Mercer assumed his new position on January 1.
Global Medical Response
COO: Ted Van Horne
Employees: 29,000 (1,200 in San Diego area)
Revenue: $2.15 billion
Headquarters: Greenwood Village, CO
Notable: In March 2018, American Medical Response became a subsidiary of Global Medical Response.
Contact: (898) 492-3500