Brandon Torres, Chief of Emergency Services
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
Throughout his 14-year career, Ranger Torres has dedicated his life to helping others and protecting visitors in the national parks as a federal law enforcement officer, paramedic, rescuer, firefighter, coach, guide, and teacher. His work has extended far beyond the basic call of duty. He's taken part in complex rescue operations, assisted with medical emergencies, and responded to natural disasters.
In addition to Grand Canyon, Torres has worked at Olympic, Grand Teton and Zion national parks and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. He has instituted lasting programs including a backcountry bear canister loan program at Grand Teton and the search and rescue helicopter short-haul technique at Zion. He has also served on high profile search and rescue missions, special events such as the 2009 Presidential Inauguration and response efforts for Hurricanes Isabel, Rita, Ike, and Sandy.
"In a profession where extreme dedication and high standards are the norm, Brandon Torres has set himself apart with his impressive leadership ability and wilderness skills," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. "As the chief of emergency services at Grand Canyon National Park, his job is incredibly demanding. He never knows what will happen next and is prepared for everything, just in case. He is the steady hand that can save your life in a medical emergency, that can pull you out of a trouble when you've gotten in a jam, and that can correct a dangerous situation before it's too late."
Torres has earned the highest respect from his coworkers, mentored other rangers, and is known for his kindness, sound judgment, and sincerity. Torres approaches park visitors with respect, concern, and compassion-often in difficult circumstances.