In Search Of...

I hope that party politics can take the back seat to the individuals' qualifications for serving at the helm of these organizations.

Whereas, the Congressionally-intended role of the United States Fire Administrator, as identified nearly 35 years ago in the "Federal Fire Prevention and Control Action of 1974," a bi-partisan effort following release of the 1973 landmark document, "America Burning: The Report of the National Commission on Fire Prevention and Control," and which had it's impetus in the "Federal Fire Research and Safety Act of 1968," collectively recognized the importance of prevention, and

Whereas, it is acknowledged that all aspects of the U.S. Fire Administration are important, including programs dealing with firefighter safety, national fire data, operational efficiency, and training for suppression, there has not been adequate attention to the most effective and productive approach to reducing civilian and firefighter injures and deaths, that being prevention as has been proven in many nations and some U.S. cities, which has also repeatedly been acknowledged by leading authorities for decades now.

Whereas, in recognition of the many outstanding USFA accomplishments in these past 3 1/2 decades to include the important ongoing work of men and women all across the nation and in communities large and small still need and want an Administrator at the helm who shows public commitment to recently articulated ideals of the "Vision 20/20: National Strategies for Fire Loss Prevention" initiative, and

Whereas, in concert with the Congress that as President you will commit to insure that the United States Fire Administrator agrees, prior to the commencement of his/her appointment process, to champion prevention as the major means to reduce the magnitude of the nation's fire problem in concert with governmental agencies and private sector advocates who individually and collectively are positioned to help the United States Fire Administrator solve America's Fire Problem,

Whereas, the member organizations of the CFSI National Advisory Committee by unanimous action desire to assist the next President of the United States to select an individual of proven comprehensive leadership in the field of fire prevention, and

Whereas, the National Advisory Committee of the Congressional Fire Services Institute is united in respectively requesting the next President - by way of selection of a U.S. Fire Administrator - will do all possible to publicly commit to help prevent the tragic losses of life and property as unacceptable assaults on the nation's families, businesses, governments and America's economical viability and indeed the American way of life, does agree to appoint a person to the position of United States Fire Administrator who possesses obvious knowledge, skills and abilities to lead the nation's programs of fire loss prevention.

Therefore now be it resolved, the member organizations of the Congressional Fire Services Institute commits themselves to assist the next U.S. Fire Administrator and to support the President in fulfilling both the intent and continuing need for Prevention to be the focus of the U.S. Fire Administrator's efforts and the U.S. Fire Administration's highest priority.

For the reasons beyond my level of comprehension, this draft of the "resolution" was not embraced with warmth, and was brushed aside at the very inception, thus never saw the daylight.

Considering the strength of the logic and the validity of the reasons presented in that "resolution"; I thought that it would only be prudent to revive it in an article titled "In Search Of".

After all, by only a little editorial modification to the original draft of the "resolution", and merely changing the words "the next President", to "President Obama", we still have a pretty solid document, don't we? Then the "resolution" should still be of value for the selection of the next USFA Administrator.

In all my previous articles I have always emphasized on the important role of the USFA as the lead national fire service organization. And I have always referred to the USFA Administrator as our Incident Commander (IC). In my mind, the next USFA Administrator must have such high qualifications to serve as our IC.

The next USFA Administrator must be an accomplished fire service leader that is well-versed in the fundamental principles of the organization that he/she will lead, and must have demonstrated deep commitment to the core founding values and missions of the USFA, as was originally outlined in Public Law 93-498, "The Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974".