Executive Leadership

Richard Zuschlag, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer

Richard Zuschlag

Chairman & Chief Executive Officer

Richard cofounded Acadian Ambulance in 1971 after working for Greenville Broadcasting Company and Westinghouse Electric Company Space and Defense Center. He was instrumental in developing the Lafayette 911 system and is responsible for leading the successful implementation of Acadian's strategic and operational initiatives company-wide.

Richard has received numerous honors and distinctions over the years, including the James O. Page/JEMS Leadership Award in 2019, Pinnacle EMS' Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016, the 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the Healthcare and Healthcare Services category for the Gulf Coast Region and Inc. magazine's 2005 Entrepreneur of the Year, Honorable Mention, for his efforts in coordinating Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts. He was also inducted into the Louisiana Political Hall of Fame, named a “Louisiana Legend” by Louisiana Public Broadcasting, honored by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette's Alumni Association at its 2019 Spring Gala and received the Jewell P. Lowe Humanitarian Award from 232-HELP.

Richard has headed fundraising efforts for many organizations including the Boy Scouts, United Way, schools, universities and churches. He was named king of the 2005 Washington, D.C., Mardi Gras and has received several community and civic awards, including the Lafayette Civic Cup, Boy Scouts Distinguished Citizen, Golden Mike, Marketer of the Year and Louisiana Businessman of the Year.

Richard is a graduate of the Capitol Institute of Technology.

Eddy Dupuis

Chief Financial Officer

Eddy joined Acadian in 2007. He oversees Acadian's accounting and budgeting functions, as well as financial and income tax reporting processes. He maintains banking relationships and serves as the principal officer regarding merger and acquisitions. He also provides direction for Acadian's health insurance plan, 401(k) and employee stock ownership plan (ESOP).

Eddy is a certified public accountant and member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Louisiana Society of Certified Public Accountants. Prior to his appointment as CFO, he served as an executive vice president, where he provided financial oversight and guidance to several divisions of Acadian Companies, including Safety Management Systems, Acadian Total Security, Acadian Air Med and Executive Aircraft Charter Service. He graduated cum laude from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette with a bachelor's degree in business administration.

Blaise Zuschlag

Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer

Blaise manages the company’s purchasing, fleet maintenance, IT and building maintenance departments, as well as assists in planning and directing all corporate administrative, financial and operational activities. He also works on special projects and strategic initiatives including acquisitions, innovation and governmental relations. Blaise joined Acadian Companies in February 2013 and has held roles as a business analyst, director of administration and most recently, chief of staff. Prior to Acadian, he served as an advisor for JP Morgan Chase’s Private Bank.

A native of Lafayette, LA, Blaise earned a bachelor's degree in finance from LSU and a MBA from Tulane University. He is a graduate of Leadership Lafayette Class 24 and serves on numerous local nonprofit boards, including Lafayette Education Foundation, Evangeline Area Boy Scouts Swamp Base Capital Campaign, Holy Family Catholic School Steering Committee and the One Acadiana Executive Committee.

Allyson Pharr, Senior Vice President of Legal & Governmental Affairs

Allyson Pharr

Executive Vice President & Chief Legal Officer

Allyson has oversight responsibility for the legal & risk management, governmental affairs and public relations departments. She joined Acadian in 2001 as associate general counsel and now serves on the company’s executive committee, which has operational oversight for the administrative affairs of the organization as a whole.

Allyson received her bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in 1990 and her Juris Doctorate in law from Louisiana State University, Paul M. Hebert Law Center, in May 1993. She is admitted to practice law in the states of Texas and Louisiana and in the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana and the Eastern District of Texas. She is a member of the Louisiana Bar Association, the American Bar Association and the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel.

Asbel Montes

Sr. Vice President of Strategic Initiatives & Innovation

Asbel began his career in the ambulance industry in 1999. His EMS career included directing and leading teams that provided revenue cycle consultation to air and ground ambulance agencies, culminating into the position of Vice President of Government Relations and Revenue Cycle at Acadian Ambulance Service. In February 2019, Asbel was promoted to his current title, Sr. Vice President of Strategic Initiatives and Innovation.

Over the past 20 years, Asbel has been a member of numerous organizations, including the Healthcare Financial Managers Association (HFMA), the American Ambulance Association (AAA), National EMS Managers Association (NEMSMA) and the National Association of EMTs (NAEMT). He has also served as a board member for the AAA and the Louisiana Ambulance Alliance. Asbel currently serves on numerous committees and more notably chairs the AAA Payment Reform Committee as the industry begins to navigate the current healthcare changes and the correlation to the air and ground ambulance industry.

In 2016, Asbel was appointed to the Ambulance Transport Alternatives Task Force for the State of Louisiana by Governor John Bel Edwards. He is a respected thought leader on reimbursement initiatives within the industry and is a requested speaker at many conferences. He has also been asked to testify as an expert witness before federal and state health committees regarding ambulance reimbursement and veteran health initiatives as it relates to emergency medicine.

Asbel is a contributing author in several EMS magazines as well as co-authoring the book, Management of Ambulance Services, as published by Prentice Hall in 2014.

Acadian Ambulance Leadership

Jerry Romero, President of Acadian Ambulance

Jerry Romero


Jerry began his career at Acadian in 1977 as an EMT and has served as a paramedic, dispatcher, dispatch supervisor, operations manager, vice president of operations and senior vice president.

He was key to Acadian’s expansion into Texas in 2006, when the company entered Orange County. He works closely with the Texas team to continue growth through RFPs, contracts and acquisitions.

His extensive involvement in community organizations includes work with the United Way, the American Heart Association and the Boy Scouts of America.

Justin Back

Justin Back

Vice President of Integrations

Service Area:
Louisiana: Central Louisiana, Hub City, Ouachita and Southwest Louisiana areas; Tennessee and any future expansion areas

Justin began his career in the Australian army after graduating from the Royal Military College and served for eight years. During this time, he served in command roles in Iraq and Afghanistan, working closely with U.S. and coalition forces.

After his military service, he entered the maritime industry and was based in Singapore for five years. During this time, he worked primarily in West Africa, South America and the subcontinent in business development and project management roles. Justin moved to the U.S. to work as a project manager in the domestic onshore oil and gas industry before joining Acadian in June 2013 as vice president of fleet operations. He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Brandon Hebert

Vice President

Service Area:
Texas: Houston, Southeast Texas areas

Brandon came to Acadian in 1999, working his way from EMT to paramedic to flight medic, then supervisor, operations manager, director of operations and, now, Regional Vice President for Southeast Texas and Houston. He also serves as a board member for the LIT foundation (since 2015) and is a graduate of Leadership Southeast Texas. Brandon is married to his wife of 15 years and has two children. He also volunteers as a coach and board member for the West Beaumont Bruin football league, where he enjoys teaching life lessons alongside football and he gets to keep his medic skills sharp.

Tim Burke

Tim Burke

Vice President

Service Area:
Louisiana: Bayou, Capital, Northshore and Orleans areas; Mississippi: Jackson County

Tim has financial and operational responsibility for all Acadian operations in Southeast Louisiana and Jackson County, Mississippi. Tim joined Acadian in 2003 after spending 17 years at a major urban medical center, where he worked in many capacities, including as controller. He last served as the senior director for clinic operations.

Tim holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Loyola University and an MBA from the University of New Orleans. He is a CPA, a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) and a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE). He is also trained in the National Incident Management System (NIMS) from FEMA. He is a member of the Metropolitan Ambulance Council (MAC) for Greater New Orleans.

Troy Mayer, Regional Vice President

Troy Mayer

Vice President

Service Area:
Texas: Central Texas, North Texas and South-Central Texas areas

Troy joined Acadian Ambulance in 1989 and served as the operations manager when Acadian entered Bexar, Travis and Williamson counties. In that role, he supervised the Austin Communications Center, field supervisors and nine operations stations and substations. He also has worked as a staff accountant, an operations supervisor, a field paramedic and an EMT.

He participates in legislative and governmental affairs activities and helps coordinate national accreditation efforts for Acadian's Texas operations. Troy graduated from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette with a degree in accounting and holds numerous EMS industry certifications. He also is a member of the South Texas Regional Advisory Council and the Capital Area Trauma Regional Advisory Council.

Air Services Leadership

Michael Sonnier

Vice President of Air Services

Mike joined Acadian in 1990 as an EMT and was certified as a paramedic in 1992. Mike has worn many hats at Acadian, working on ground ambulances and offshore locations as a paramedic, at Acadian's Communication Center as a supervisor, and Air Services' coordinator for Acadian's Fixed-Wing division before becoming an operations manager.

While at Acadian, Mike has won many awards, including Communications Specialist of the Year in 1997 and Telecommunicator of the Year in 2006.

Mike attended Louisiana State University and University of Louisiana at Lafayette before entering the EMT/paramedic program at the National EMS Academy.

Marc Creswell

Operations Manager, Air Med-Rotor Wing

Marc began working with Acadian in 1990 in Abbeville, Louisiana. He worked in human resources, education, communications, and was the first training officer for Air Med Services. He now manages the day-to-day operations of the Air Med's rotor-wing division, Operational Control Center and other operational issues under the directions of Air Med Services.

Marc trained at Acadian through the in-house paramedic class and was named Paramedic of the Year in 2007. Marc's air medical experiences have offered content in several documentaries on the Discovery Channel and National Geographic.

Sherri Wells, FP-C

Operations Supervisor, Air Med-Rotor Wing

Sherri joined Acadian in 1997, working in Hammond, Louisiana, as an EMT. She became a paramedic in 2001 and joined the Air Med division in 2005. Throughout her time at Acadian, Sherri has been involved in many aspects of the company, including the ground division, education, public relations and air operations. Sherri is an operations supervisor for Air Med's rotor wing division and oversees personnel and daily operational issues.

Sherri attended LSU-Eunice and received her associate's degree in Emergency Medical Services with a Certificate of Technical Studies in Safety. She was nominated as the Air Med Paramedic of the Year in 2013 and 2018.

Shaun Templet, FP-C

Quality Improvement Supervisor, Air Med-Rotor Wing

Shaun joined Acadian in 2004, working in Houma, Louisiana, as an EMT. He became a paramedic in 2006 and a CCT medic in 2009. Shaun became an alternate flight paramedic in 2012 and took a full-time position in the department later that same year. Shaun has worked in the dispatch center and helped with many educational rollouts within the company. He continues to do adjunct work with the National EMS Academy.

As Quality Improvement Supervisor, Shaun oversees clinical performance and documentation. He has an Associate of Science degree from the Nicholls State University College of Nursing and Allied Health.

Kent Kramer

Chief Flight Nurse/Education Supervisor

Kent joined Acadian in 1988, working as an EMT in New Iberia, LA. A year later, he finished Acadian’s in-house paramedic program and then eventually became a flight paramedic. Kent took his first Air Med position in Baton Rouge, LA, while also pursuing a nursing degree. He became an RN in 1996.

As chief flight nurse/education supervisor, Kent is responsible for teaching and tracking all CAMTS education and credentialing requirements for all flight nurses and flight paramedics. He created, implemented and continues to oversee Air Med's blood program, while also managing part of Air Med's fleet operations.

Kent also holds a B.S. in Business from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Medical Directors

Charles Burnell, M.D.

Charles Burnell, M.D.

Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Burnell is a graduate of Louisiana State University School of Medicine and is board certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He serves as lead over other associate medical directors across Acadian's service areas. Dr. Burnell reviews on-scene medical procedures and procedures between medics and emergency room physicians. He oversees training and continuing education programs at NEMSA, as well as Acadian's wellness and quality enhancement programs.

Dr. Burnell spent 13 years at Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center in Lafayette, Louisiana, where he was the emergency department director. Before becoming medical director in 2010, Dr. Burnell worked closely with Acadian for 16 years, including during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, where he served as the director of air transports of patients from the Superdome.

Dr. Burnell graduated summa cum laude with a degree in Biochemistry at Louisiana State University. He was involved in the formation and certification of Stroke Center of Excellence at Our Lady of Lourdes RMC as the Emergency Department (ED) Stroke Team director and was instrumental in the formation of ED staffing corporation. He served as the ED director at Acadiana Acute Care Associates, LLC. He is part-owner and medical director of a private maritime security company, OSS GLOBAL (Oceanic Security and Salvage Global), with security operatives throughout the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean and East African Coast.

Emily Kidd, M.D. Texas Medical Director

Emily Kidd, M.D.

Texas Medical Director

Dr. Kidd oversees the company’s clinical operations throughout the state of Texas. She has an extensive background in clinical emergency medicine and emergency medical services (EMS) and is very familiar with both Bexar County and Houston, having served as the assistant medical director and interim medical director for the San Antonio Fire Department and the assistant medical director for the Houston Fire Department’s Division of EMS.

She is double-board certified in EMS and emergency medicine and is a fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians. She is an assistant professor at the University of Texas Health Science Center, Department of Emergency Health Sciences, at San Antonio and worked at Christus Santa Rosa City Center and Methodist Hospitals.

Dr. Kidd has experience in disaster preparedness, public health and medical emergency management at the local, regional, state and federal levels. Since 2006, she has been a sitting committee member on the Governor’s EMS and Trauma Advisory Council (GETAC) Disaster and Emergency Preparedness Committee. She also is a member of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) National Advisory Council.

Dr. Kidd served her internship and residency at East Carolina University, received her doctor of medicine degree from the University of Texas at Houston Health Science Center and her bachelor of science degree from Texas A&M University.

Brent Hebert, M.D.

Safety Management Systems Medical Director

Dr. Hebert is an experienced emergency medicine physician who has previously worked as a registered nurse. A native of Louisiana, Dr. Hebert is a graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, earning a degree in nursing. He earned an MBA in healthcare management from Davenport University's Donald W. Maine College of Business and received his medical degree from St. Matthew's University School of Medicine. Dr. Hebert serves alongside SMS Medical Director Dr. Donald Thibodaux and Acadian Ambulance Chief Medical Officer Dr. Charles Burnell.

Dr. Donald Thibodaux, M.D., Safety Management Systems Medical Director

Donald Thibodaux, M.D.

Safety Management Systems Medical Director

The high standard of care provided by SMS' remote paramedic service is in large part due to the involvement of Dr. Thibodaux. His background in emergency and occupational medicine gives SMS the advantage of understanding OSHA incident classifications and their effects on the oil & gas industry. He is on 24-hour call for emergency physician consultations and helps teach clinical extension courses and training sessions with our team to ensure the highest quality emergency medical response in the Gulf of Mexico.

A graduate of Nicholls State University, Dr. Thibodaux received his bachelor's degree in chemistry and then attended medical school at LSU Medical Center in New Orleans. After completing his emergency medicine residency at Charity Hospital at New Orleans, he spent 20 years practicing hospital-based emergency medicine in Houma, Louisiana.

Stephen Bell, M.D. Mississippi Medical Director

Stephen Bell, M.D.

Mississippi Medical Director

Dr. Bell is an emergency medicine doctor in Pascagoula, Mississippi and is affiliated with Singing River Health System-Pascagoula. He received his medical degree from Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans and has been in practice for more than 20 years.

Corporate Leadership

Scott Domingue

President of Safety Management Systems

As president of SMS, Scott has overall responsibility for the entire division. Scott began his career at Acadian Ambulance in 1988. He served through the ranks of various divisions of management then moved to Safety Management Systems as project development supervisor. He also served as a sales and marketing manager, and, most recently, a vice president.

Blane Comeaux, President of Acadian Total Security

Blane Comeaux

President of Acadian Total Security

Blane Comeaux serves as the president of Acadian Monitoring Services and has been with Acadian for more than 28 years. He was named vice president of the division in 2005 and president in 2012.

In 1999, AMS launched a diversified line of monitoring services for homes and businesses, as well as medical alarms for seniors. The division’s monitoring centers in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, Louisiana, and Chicago are considered among the best in the country. Under Blane’s entrepreneurial leadership, AMS developed a variety of assets, including Acadian’s telehealth center for daily remote patient assessment and coaching, mobile GPS monitoring for productive fleet management, a nationwide virtual guard and video monitoring center, and the 2014 launch of Acadian Total Security. This retail division provides consumers with SmartHome security and energy management, and the business community with integrated security services.

Blane is a founding member of the Medical Alert Monitoring Association and a member of the Governmental Relations Committee for the Electronic Security Association.

Gregory Hill

Vice President/Controller

Gregory joined Acadian's accounting department in 1986 as a staff accountant following his graduation from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Throughout his 30+ years of service, he has held the positions of accounting supervisor and accounting manager before moving into his current position in 2006.

Gregory has worked with numerous school, civic and religious organizations and is currently serving as a troop committee member and institutional representative for the Boy Scouts of America, Troop 19.

Joe Lightfoot

Vice President of Human Resources

Joe joined Acadian in May 2001. He has responsibility for compliance with all labor and employment law matters, recruitment and selection, salary and benefits administration, employee record-keeping and employee relations. Prior to 2001, Joe spent ten years in the hospital industry, serving in senior leadership roles at medical centers in Arkansas and Missouri.

He has served in various volunteer roles with the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, United Way of Acadiana, Ascension Episcopal School Board of Trustees, Boy Scouts Explorer Post 108 Council and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Joe earned both an MBA with a healthcare administration concentration and a bachelor’s degree in business administration/marketing from the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

Randall Mann Vice President of Marketing & Public Relations

Randall Mann

Vice President of Marketing & Public Relations

Randall joined Acadian in 2009 as the director of sales and marketing for Acadian Monitoring Services. He was promoted to vice president on the corporate level in 2013. Randall is responsible for developing and implementing marketing initiatives for Acadian's six divisions. A graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, he served in various advertising, marketing and public relations roles in agency and in-house settings for more than 25 years.

Randall is a private pilot and enjoys volunteering in his community. He is active in Lafayette's Mardi Gras activities and served on the boards of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Acadiana, the University of Louisiana Alumni Association, Acadian Air Festival, Sertoma Cajun Air Show and Louisiana Honor Air.