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Making an impact in the community

James Felzenberg | November 3, 2016

I’ve been a member of the Millburn–Short Hills Volunteer First Aid Squad since 2010. I currently serve the squad as an EMT member, a Crew Chief, 1st Lieutenant of the squad, and a Trustee. As a lifelong resident of Short Hills, I wanted to give

back to a community which has been very good to my family for the last 50 years.

Looking for a meaningful opportunity to volunteer, I took the State of NJ EMT course at MSHVFAS in 2010. Since then I have ridden on both day and night crews, and enjoy the service very much. In addition to riding my weekly commitment of a 12-hour shift and weekend shifts in regular rotation, I was able to allot some additional hours of service and take on additional responsibilities. All of the work I do is voluntary and very rewarding.

The initial training I received to become a NJ Certified EMT was provided free of charge through the squad, which also provides all ongoing training and required continuing education to all active members. I had no previous skills in the medical field, only the desire to learn a new skill set and volunteer in my community. Since becoming an EMT, I have been able to care for aging family members, and sick or injured friends with a “calm confidence,” a skill that is perfected with years of service on MSHVFAS.

The MSHVFAS also offers a great opportunity to engage with fellow residents socially and professionally while on duty and at training events. I have made many close friends serving at the squad and we all have a common interest: volunteering and caring for members of our community.

I have a 10-year-old daughter who is very interested in the work I do at the squad. She loves attending all demonstrations, parades, street fairs, and other events in town with me. She looks forward to earning her EMT certification when she is 16, and then joining the MSHVFAS cadet program. Should you ever see us around town please introduce yourself and say “Hi!”

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