CCC grad helps Page community in many ways

Page Mayor Bill Diak became an EMT assisted by Coconino Community College after his first retirement. For a video of Diak's experience, visit the CCC YouTube page here.


PAGE, Ariz. -- He’s more than the Mayor of Page.

Just ask the people he’s helped as an Emergency Medical Technician on an ambulance or as an Emergency Department Technician at the hospital.

Bill Diak has had a number of callings while living near the shores of Lake Powell. He moved to the city in 1980, but his relationship with far northern Arizona began even before that when he was a young boy. His father would take Boy Scouts on trips to Page, and the family would come every year to watch the Big Dam Rodeo. Even as an adult, Diak would come back to the area to vacation. He moved to Arizona in 1970, and with his new wife, he moved to Page after landing a job with Salt River Project, where he worked at the plant for the next 24 years.

He retired in 2004, but not before he attended Coconino Community College’s EMT program done in conjunction with Flagstaff Medical Center in 1997 and ’98. He had to travel to Flagstaff for the classes because Page did not have a campus at the time. CCC offered the credits, and FMC offered the classrooms and instruction. It was an 18-month program, and he went eight hours a day, three days a week.

“It was one of the hardest things I ever did,” Diak said, smiling. “I appreciated the opportunity.”

He received a certification as an EMT and began running calls as a volunteer firefighter and medic for the Page Fire Department after he received some additional firefighting training at SRP. He eventually became full time with the Page Fire Department after his retirement from SRP.

“I don’t run on the ambulance anymore, but I still have an opportunity to work in the Page Hospital in the Emergency Department,” Diak said. “I do that a couple days a week. It’s something I’ve always loved to do, and CCC helped me obtain that goal. I’m continuing to do that process, and it’s been over 16 years. So, it’s not something I take lightly. It’s a commitment for me, and I’m glad I had an opportunity to get my certification and do something I really love doing.”

Being the Mayor of Page is a full-time job in itself, but Diak said he finds the service at the hospital important.

“I have a love for helping and working with people,” Diak said.

He stressed the continued importance of the presence of CCC in Page.

“I believe we’ve got a great need for the community college in our area,” Diak said. “For the future, I can see many, many things coming for both the city of Page and CCC.”

CCC currently has a site in Page, which was made possible with a partnership with the city, and Diak said that the site makes going to college possible for many residents in the remote parts of far northern Arizona.

“I think as we continue to work our partnerships with one another, one of my goals would see an increase in visitation and the student count and classes here at CCC and utilize this beautiful campus to its fullest,” Diak said. “I can see that we’ve got a lot of growth that we can commit to, and we just need to find a way that we can get it all accomplished, and serve the citizens and the community around us.”

For the city of Page to thrive, it must have economic development and employment opportunities, Diak said. It would be CCC’s job to follow suit and respond to the needs of the city’s growth. He added that he believes the students are out there.

For a video of Diak's experience, visit the CCC YouTube page here.

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Category
Spotlight
Date
Wednesday, 22nd June 2016
 
 

All Dates

  • Wednesday, 22nd June 2016