Keeler named Boynton Beach Fire’s Paramedic of the Year
Lt. Matt Keeler, director of Palm Beach State’s Emergency Medical Services programs, has received the Paramedic of the Year award from Boynton Beach Fire Rescue, where he has worked as a Lt. Firefighter/Paramedic for almost 25 years.
Boynton Beach Fire Rescue has about 120 paramedics, and Keeler was nominated for the award by his Battalion Chief John Canela, who oversees the B-Shift personnel.
In nominating Keeler for the award, Canela wrote: “As BBFR’s most senior member, Lt. Keeler has displayed an unwavering commitment to EMS, training paramedics, and continuing education. … It is my opinion, and that of many, many others, that Lt. Keeler is the finest paramedic ever employed by the Boynton Beach Fire Rescue Department.”
The Boynton Beach First Responders Awards Presentation was held April 16, hosted by the Greater Boca Raton and Greater Boynton Beach Chambers of Commerce and sponsored by ADT. Due to COVID-19, the awards ceremony was held via Zoom and limited to only two awards. Firefighter of the Year was given to Capt. David Friedberg, who happens to be one of Keeler’s former students. Canela is also a Palm Beach State alumnus and EMS adjunct instructor.
The PBSC connections aren’t surprising considering that the College is the leading trainer of EMS personnel in the county.
“Matt is so deserving of this honor, not only for his work with Boynton Beach Fire Rescue, but also for his leadership here this past year,” said Barbara Cipriano, PBSC interim dean of Public Safety, Business and Industry. “He has led us through COVID-19 by providing safety guidance within our Public Safety department and to the College community at large.”
Though Keeler is greatly honored to receive this award, awards are not what he finds most gratifying.
“I take greater pleasure in knowing that at least five of my former students who work with me at Boynton Beach Fire Rescue have also won this award over the years.”
Spoken like an award-winning educator.