With an eye toward team building and community involvement, Buncombe County EMS Director Taylor Jones says leadership is all about relationships and growth. The results of his philosophy are making a difference in our community and earning national praise as he’s been named to Engaging Local Government Leaders' (ELGL) Top 100 Local Government Influencers. “I was pleasantly humbled… It’s a good feeling to know that my actions have made a positive impact in the lives of the community members I serve,” says Taylor of the peer-nominated award.
Assistant County Manager DK Wesley says Taylor’s leadership, passion for community, and innovation have been instrumental in day-to-day operations and unprecedented situations. “He was vital in leading us through the pandemic while simultaneously encouraging the organization to make enhancements to our service delivery through strengthening emergency services infrastructure and implementing evidence-based programs like community paramedicine,” explains DK. “This honor is noteworthy, and I am not surprised that Taylor would be a recipient. He has certainly been of great influence in our county’s success, and I am glad this has not gone unnoticed nationally.”
Having to navigate complex and diverse emergency situations is no easy task. Taylor says a major aspect of his job is equipping others for success. “Leadership is providing my staff with the tools they need to help to our community. For me, it has been a learned ability to adapt, react, and overcome in a way that encourages that relationship with my team and highlights their achievements,” says Taylor. “It is knowing that no single person is smarter or greater than the entire team. It requires an ability to see beyond a single problem and create solutions that are mutually beneficial to all parties and accept responsibility for outcomes when solutions fall below expectation.”
Taylor has been at the helm of responding to everything from natural disasters to being instrumental in leading Buncombe County’s response to the COVID-19 global pandemic, and he says he draws from all those experiences to make informed decisions. “I use lived-experiences to pilot modern, unbiased emergency services programs to enhance our service delivery to the residents and visitors who live, work, and play in Buncombe County,” says Taylor.
Congratulations on being named a Top 100 Local Government Influencer, your leadership, insights, and dedication are an asset to our community.