February 15, 2016

The ESOP Association, a national organization of companies in which employees are owners through Employee Stock Ownership Plans, presented its 2015 Award for Intranet Communications Excellence to Acadian Ambulance Service. The presentation was made at the association’s annual conference here.

On this category, the judges said, “Acadian’s Intranet presents a wide range of communications from policies, to news articles and videos. Their ownership communications are clear, open and consistent.  With over 4000 employees they are challenged by their employees’ geographic locations throughout three states and the U.S.  and they have good use of reaching their employees through their Intranet.”

National ESOP Association President Michael Keeling in presenting the award said, “Every time I am with an Acadian employee, I am truly impressed with the caliber of the people Acadian has been able to recruit. I have had the pleasure of visiting Acadian several times, as this is not their first national award, and I am not surprised that they won another. The judges who are employee owners themselves thought that Acadian’s Intranet and its use of communicating to employees was the best in any large company in America. The National ESOP members are absolutely proud to have Acadian Ambulance associated with our national organization,” concluded Keeling.

Acadian’s CFO David Kelly, ESOP Committee Chair Laura Logan and ESOP Committee Vice Chair Harry Murphy accepted the award. David Kelly said, “Employee-ownership is the foundation of Acadian’s success in the healthcare field. Our growth and progress stem from the fact that our people are motivated by pride of ownership and  this has brought our company from ambulance transportation to six other successful divisions: Ambulance & Air Med, National EMS Academy, Safety Management Systems, Acadian Total Security and Executive Aircraft Charter Services.  All of our successes are a direct result from the participation and pride that being an employee owner creates.”

Also attending the conference were employee owners Kara Murphy and Scott Johnson. Johnson, was awarded Employee of the Year by the Southwest ESOP Association and  a runner up for National ESOP Employee Owner of the Year. Johnson is a paramedic stationed in Evangeline Parish of Louisiana and is a 31-year Acadian veteran. According to Johnson, Acadian is a better company because of ESOP.  “We are all passionate about our work, and being an employee owner enables us to share in the wealth we help create,” he said.

The ESOP Association, founded in 1978, the largest employer sponsored advocacy and education association focused on retirement savings in America, is a national non-profit membership organization, with 18 local Chapters, serving approximately 2,800 employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) companies, professionals with a commitment to ESOPs, and companies considering the implementation of an ESOP.

The Association’s focus is on preserving and promoting employee stock ownership through the ESOP structure. Enhancing laws before Congress and regulatory agencies that govern ESOPs and providing its members with expert educational ESOP programming and information are its main concentrations.

Acadian Ambulance Service ranks among the top 100 employee-owned companies in the U.S., according to a list compiled by the National Center for Employee Ownership. The men and women of Acadian became employee-owners of the largest privately owned ambulance service in the U.S. in 1993, with the adoption of an Employee Stock Ownership Program (ESOP). Under the plan, 80 percent of the company value in stock is available to employees. The plan involves placing the stock in trust, with those shares acquired by employees redeemable in cash at the time of retirement.

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