Volunteer Award

Volunteer of the Year Award

The intent of this award is to recognize and commend a volunteer for his/her dedication to the service of others in his or her community. While recognizing one volunteer, the award recipient is an example of the tireless efforts of all volunteers throughout Connecticut.


This award was established in honor of George A. Ganung, who was an exceptional volunteer firefighter and EMT that was killed at the age of 62 while serving his community. Mr. Ganung had served his country in the United States Navy and had been employed by the Connecticut
Department of Transportation for 20 years and was working towards his master’s degree in Geology.

A member of the New Hartford South End Volunteer Fire Department for 23 years, Mr. Ganung also served his community for ten years on the New Hartford Volunteer Ambulance Service. He was instrumental in the formation of their First Responder Program. As with many other communities in Connecticut, New Hartford Volunteer Ambulance Service found it difficult to get care to a patient swiftly. George devised and implemented a program that sends neighborhood EMT responders directly to the patient while the ambulance crew responds with the vehicle. This innovative EMS response procedure is still in use in many communities throughout Connecticut today.