Penrose-St. Francis EMS Staff & Educators
The Penrose-St. Francis EMS Institute provides medical direction, monthly continuing education, and continuous quality improvement to 50 EMS and fire agencies in El Paso and Teller counties.
Operations & Business Support
For general questions, please contact Brandi Martinez.
Louise Palermo, BA - Business Operations Coordinator
Louise has been a part of the local EMS community for decades. She began her Centura career in a local Emergency Department then worked on the operations side of ground and air ambulance programs for ~20 years. Her clinical credentials include “formerly certified EMT” and CPR certification but she excels at the business of EMS. Her varied responsibilities include but are not limited to: budgets, revenue, invoices, purchasing, time sheets, data, Emergency Responder Exposures, field blood draw program, event planning, marketing, business development, random questions and “I don’t know who to call” telephone and text inquiries.
She has a degree in Accounting from Regis University and is midway through her MBA at UCCS. Her limited free time is most enjoyably spent: Outside - hiking, trotting or biking, Inside – curled up with a book or binging on Netflix or, Anywhere with her 3.5 rambunctious and energetic grandchildren. She loves working with EMS folk and very much appreciates their profound contributions to our community. Her favorite people are anyone who makes her laugh or comes bearing chocolate.
Brandi Martinez, CMA, CNA - Business Support
Brandi Martinez, CMA, CNA is a Business Support III with the Penrose- St. Francis EMS Institute and Paramedic Academy. She supports management and the team of Educators in the daily business aspect of the department. She also continues to actively work as a Clinical Medical Assistant in the community to provide Health Screenings.
Her career in Healthcare started nearly nine years ago. During the course of her career she has worked for Pueblo Cardiology Associates as a Clinical Care Partner. Her most recent experience comes from the Penrose Cancer Center in the Department of Radiation Oncology as a Health Benefit Advisor.
Brandi is currently working on her B.S. in Healthcare Management at Western Governors University. She currently holds the following professional certifications:
- Certified Medical Assistant (AAMA)
- Certified Nurse Aide (CO)
- BLS (American Heart Association)
When she isn’t working, or spending time with her kids, she enjoys hiking, running, focusing on healthy living, and reading.
Susan Richardson, MS, NRP - EMS Manager
Sue Richardson began her undergraduate program at Old Dominion University where she won two Division I Women’s Basketball National Championships as the team captain. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Health and Physical Education from Metropolitan State College in Denver. In 1987, Sue earned her Masters of Science in Education at Old Dominion University. After earning her Master’s Degree, Sue spent 9 years as a division I and II college women’s basketball coach.
Sue joined the fire service in 1997 when she was hired by the Colorado Springs Fire Department. During her career, Sue received the Medal of Distinguished Service, Award of Recognition, and served as the coordinator for the Colorado Springs Fire Department Peer Support Program for four years. Sue co-presented “Managing Stress In EMS: The Peer Support Program” at the Mile High RETAC Safety Summit in 2012 and “Beyond CISD: Building a Successful Peer Support Program” at the 2009 Continental Divide Disaster Behavioral Health Conference. After a 16-year career as a firefighter/paramedic for CSFD she retired in 2013. In 2014, she became the Manager of the Penrose-St. Francis EMS Institute. The PSF EMS Institute provides medical direction, monthly continuing education, and continuous quality improvement to 50 EMS and fire agencies in El Paso and Teller counties. Sue enjoys hiking with her dogs, swimming, cycling, and traveling.
Meet our educators who are committed to providing the highest level of EMS education for Southern Colorado.
Mike Barrow, Paramedic
Mike Barrow started his EMS career as an Emergency Room Technician in Columbia City, IN. Since then, he has worked as a full time Paramedic and functioned as a Field Training Officer at the Three Rivers Ambulance Authority in Fort Wayne, IN. After moving to CO, he served as the Director of Training and Education for Action Care Ambulance in Centennial, CO. In addition to this he also co-founded the CPR Podcast, a prehospital FOAM blog and podcast. Mike is currently working on his B.S. in Health and EMS Management at Columbia Southern University.
Joni Briola, BS, NRP
Joni Briola, EMT-P, AAS, BS., is an EMS educator with the Penrose-St. Francis EMS Institute in Colorado Springs, where she helps deliver continuing education to providers throughout El Paso and Teller counties. Her career in EMS has spanned 25 years, beginning as a volunteer fire fighter and EMT, and progressing to a field paramedic working for ambulance services throughout the Denver-Metro area. She has been an EMS educator since 2000, when she became a paramedic educator at the Community College of Aurora. Prior to joining Centura in 2015, she was employed by the state as the Education and Practice Coordinator at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Emergency Medical and Trauma Services Branch, assisting the public, providers, education program directors, medical directors and prehospital agencies from all over the state of Colorado.
In her off-time, she loves hanging out with her two amazing sons, and hanging on for dear life, when her dog chases the neighborhood rabbits.
Dave Mead, BS, Paramedic
Completed EMT training at CU Boulder in 1976. Completed Paramedic training in 1978. Began work as an Ortho-Tech/EMT in the emergency department and transitioned into field medicine working as a paramedic on ambulance. Colorado Paramedic of the Year in 1983. Worked for the Colorado Springs Fire Department as a Paramedic Educator for 20 years, retired in 2015. Now working for the Penrose–St. Francis EMS Institute as a Paramedic Educator.
Christine Sines, Paramedic
Christine Sines is a paramedic educator with the Penrose-St. Francis EMS Institute and strongly supports the progress of medical care provided by emergency services in El Paso, Teller, and Park counties. She has a strong passion for education both personally and professionally. She is actively completing her bachelor of science degree. She has learned through her experience as a paid and volunteer EMS provider that compassion and drive to learn plays an important role in providing excellent patient care.
Christine’s biggest accomplishments as a paramedic are recognition from her coworkers for the care she provides and a “Thank you” from a patient or family. She has been called “Mama Bear” by her coworkers because she was available to give advice and made sure coworkers had the support and resources to have a safe career. She has also been called “Wicked Witch” by those in training as she took time to ensure quality care was provided.
Christine lives in rural Park county where she has raised her children. As a resident she supports and relies on her local volunteer and paid EMS/fire agencies. She respects and appreciates the sacrifices they make to provide medical care. Out of a strong sense of family with EMS and respect to fallen EMS providers Christine is a member of the AMR Honor Guard.