DALLAS, Texas -- New U.S. Fire Administrator Kelvin Cochran was sworn in this morning at the opening of Fire-Rescue International.
The event was a ceremonial swearing in, appropriately located as Cochran is a former 1st Vice President of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the host of the conference. He has officially been sworn in since Aug. 18.
The event, held during the general session, was led by Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano. She invited Cochran on stage along with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate for the symbolic moment. Cochran smiled and appeared relaxed as he repeated the oath of office and then made a brief statement.
"Let me begin by thanking President Barack Obama, Secretary Janet Napolitano and Administrator Craig Fugate for the confidence they have expressed in me and the support they have shown," he said.
Cochran went on to thank all those who made it possible for him to receive this honor and had them stand to be recognized, saying, "You made me the fire professional I am today." Those he thanked included members of his former fire departments: Atlanta, Ga. and Shreveport, La.
"I salute you. You made my childhood dream come true, and you will always be a part of the Cochran family," he said.
Cochran also recognized his personal family members who were present, including his mother, "Who gave me life and inspired my dreams," his mother-in-law, his wife, "the love of my life and my soul mate," as well as his daughter, brother, sister and nephew.
He left with the words, "Thank you, and enjoy the conference I look forward to sharing with you all tomorrow."
Cochran is scheduled to speak during Friday's FRI general session on "maintaining momentum, unity and camaraderie through the challenges of the economic downturn."