MAG honors retired Albany M.D. for community service
Charles B. Gillespie, M.D., received the Physician’s Award for Community Service during a ceremony that took place in conjunction with the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) 162nd House of Delegates meeting in Savannah on October 15. The MAG award recognizes physicians who demonstrate a love for the community outside the regular scope of practice.
In his nomination letter, John Harvey, M.D., said that, “As the chair of the committee that Governor Jimmy Carter appointed in the early 1970s that formed Georgia’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) system, Dr. Gillespie was instrumental in establishing the regulations for the EMS service in Georgia. He also reformed the EMS training process in a number of important ways, including the implementation of an EMT oath that was adopted throughout Georgia and is now used across the U.S. and beyond.”
Dr. Harvey also pointed out that, “Dr. Gillespie has been a tireless advocate for a universal 911 service in Georgia – and he is widely considered to be the ‘father’ of emergency medical services in Georgia.”
Dr. Gillespie established the Albany Tech EMT training program in 1972 – a program (and training center) that now bears his name.
The retired surgeon has served his community in a number of important ways, including as a member of the Georgia Department of Human Resources Emergency Health Services Advisory and Medical Directors Advisory councils, the U.S. Department of Health Education and Welfare, the Georgia E.M.T. Committee, and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.
As a member of the Governor's Military Affairs Committee, he came up with the idea to install directional and mileage road signs to help visitors get to the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Albany – a concept he extended to Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, the Air Force bases in Warner Robins, and Fort Bennington and Fort Stewart.
Dr. Gillespie also worked with Humana to reduce the number and complexity of the pre-certification processes for more than 400 TRICARE surgical procedures.
And as a member of the Southwest Georgia Regional Airport Commission, Dr. Gillespie played a key role in the design and construction of a $12 million terminal at the airport in Albany.
Dr. Gillespie received his medical degree from the Emory University School of Medicine in 1961, while he completed his orthopedic residency at Grady Hospital in 1966.