Chief Concerns

Fire Chief Finishing School, Part 1 – Getting Ready to Move Up

About a year ago, I was invited by retired Fire Chief Alan Brunacini to assist with a newly developed educational experience that he refers to as the “Fire Chief’s Leadership Retreat.” It is the only program I am aware of that is a “finishing school” for those interested in taking on more organizational responsibility. Chief Brunacini has developed a curriculum and a collection of fire service leaders willing to share the secrets and pitfalls of being a senior leader in today’s fire-rescue service. Chief Brunacini has joined forces with the Columbia Southern University of Orange Beach, AL, to present a three-day learning experience. The participants are treated to some of the best and brightest in the business discussing a wide range of contemporary fire service topics and in-depth discussions of a wide array of case studies. Upon completion, the class members obtain continuing educational units and can go on to obtain undergraduate course-work hours.

Chief Brunacini and the university’s president, Robert Mayes, will bring this training to life at Firehouse Expo in Baltimore, MD, next month, just as they did at Firehouse World in San Diego, CA, in February. (Visit for more information.) This program is open to all who may find leadership skills useful whether they are in a volunteer, career or combination department.

Next: Early preparation pays off