NVFC Announces 2012 Award Winners

April 4, 2012

The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) has announced the winners of its four national awards. A special banquet to honor the recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Fire Prevention Award, Junior Firefighter of the Year Award, and Junior Firefighter Program of the Year Award will take place during the NVFC’s spring meeting on April 28, 2012, in Alexandria, VA.

“We are once again greatly impressed with the quality and caliber of nominations that we received for the NVFC’s annual awards,” said NVFC Chairman Philip C. Stittleburg. “The recipients that were chosen truly exemplify outstanding service and commitment to the fire service. We thank you for all you do to strengthen the emergency services and protect your communities.”

Award recipients receive a trip to Alexandria to attend the award ceremony, a personalized award, and complimentary one-year membership in the NVFC, among other items. The Junior Firefighter of the Year also receives a trip to a Scott Firefighter Combat Challenge.

Learn more about the NVFC’s awards program at www.nvfc.org/about-us/awards/. Stay tuned to the NVFC web site and e-newsletters in May for additional information about each award winner as well as photos from the awards banquet.

The recipients of the NVFC’s 2012 awards are as follows:

Chief Lawrence Plumer
NVFC Lifetime Achievement Award
Award sponsored by Rosenbauer America

Chief Lawrence Plumer has been a firefighter at the Durand (WI) City/Rural Fire Department for over 45 years and has been Chief for the past 29 years. Until retiring, he also served for 38 years as an EMT on the Durand Municipal Ambulance Service, including 23 years as Director. Chief Plumer was named President of the Wisconsin State Firefighters Association in 1984, a title he still holds today. Within his fire department, he has worked diligently to raise money and apply for grants to purchase equipment, including defibrillators. He was instrumental in securing and providing training on defibrillators for all Durand area first responders and Durand area schools. For over two decades, he was worked with local schools to share fire prevention information with youth. Chief Plumer was recognized as the Firefighter of the Year by the Wisconsin State Firefighter’s Association in 2004.

James Conomea
NVFC Fire Prevention Award

Award sponsored by First Alert

James Conomea has been an active firefighter for more than 15 years and currently serves with Clay County (FL) Fire Rescue. As a Fire Prevention Officer, he has coordinated over 150 fire prevention education events in the last five years. He conducts hands-on safety training in the community through neighborhood and school safety events, works with over 50 elementary and preschool classes, and provides literature to over 100 classes each year. Conomea writes articles on fire prevention for the Florida Fire Chief's Association magazine, Firehouse Online, 1st Responder News, and other online outlets and local newspapers. In addition to his work in fire prevention, Conomea is on the planning committee for a local first response training program for teens, maintains the fire department web site, is a member of the Honor Guard, and is a Senior Vice President of a global financial firm.

Cherryville Fire Department
NVFC Junior Firefighter Program of the Year

Award sponsored by Tyco International

The Cherryville (NC) Fire Department junior firefighter program was established in 1983. Approximately 90 percent of their junior firefighters continue in the fire service after high school. The Cherryville junior firefighters follow a yearly training schedule that focuses on safe, effective training through hands-on drills and classroom training. In 2011 alone, the 12 junior firefighters completed over 1,200 hours of scheduled training. Each October, the Cherryville junior firefighters play a crucial role in providing a fire prevention day for the approximately 3,500 students in the Cherryville area schools. During the event, they help with logistics as well as educate their peers about fire safety and prevention. Other community organizations, such as the town’s Little League, rely on the juniors’ assistance with running their programs. They are taught that their role as a firefighter doesn’t end with fighting fires, but also involves helping and serving their community in any way possible.

Katherine Brierley
NVFC Junior Firefighter of the Year

Award sponsored by Tyco International

Katherine (Kassie) Brierley has been a junior firefighter with the Coventry (CT) Volunteer Fire Association for over four years. She received state certification as an emergency medical responder at the age of 14 and recently became certified as an EMT. Brierley has participated in fundraising events such as a Penguin Plunge and Fill-the-Boot, as well as provided fire prevention outreach in her community. At the Connecticut Fire Academy, she has established water supply, led teams in tower ladder operations, and worn SCBA while training to fight fires. She is also a certified boat operator and has training in fighting wildfires. She serves as an active mentor to more than 20 new junior firefighters. Brierley is also a member of her school’s soccer team and is an honor roll student. She plans to study pre-medicine at college and become a pediatric doctor.

Award Sponsors

About the National Volunteer Fire Council
The NVFC is the leading nonprofit membership association representing the interests of the volunteer fire, EMS, and rescue services. The NVFC serves as the voice of the volunteer in the national arena and provides invaluable tools, resources, programs, and advocacy for first responders across the nation. Learn more at www.nvfc.org.

About First Alert
BRK Brands, Inc. (Aurora, IL), is a fully owned subsidiary of Jarden Corporation (Rye, NY) NYSE:JAH, a leading provider of niche consumer products used in and around the home. For 50 years, BRK Brands, Inc. has been the manufacturer of First Alert®-branded home-safety products, the most trusted and recognized safety brands in America. BRK® Brands designs and develops innovative safety solutions including Tundra® Fire Extinguishing Spray, ONELINK® wireless alarms and a comprehensive line of smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, fire extinguishers, and escape ladders to protect what matters most. Such products are also marketed under the BRK Electronics® brand, The Professional Standard for the builder and contractor audiences. BRK Brands, Inc. products are found in more than 30 countries worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.firstalert.com, http://www.brkelectronics.com, or http://www.jarden.com.

About Rosenbauer America
Rosenbauer America is the world’s leading manufacturer of firefighting vehicles and equipment. With locations all over the globe, the North American operations are based in Lyons, South Dakota; Wyoming, Minnesota; and Fremont, Nebraska. Rosenbauer incorporates the international strength and innovation of a global company with top American manufacturing firms to build firefighters what they need to help keep their communities safe. For more information, please visit www.rosenbaueramerica.com.

About Tyco International

Tyco International is a diversified, global company that provides vital products and services to customers in more than 60 countries and has more than 100,000 employees worldwide. Tyco is a leading provider of electronic security products and services, fire protection and detection products and services, and valves and controls. For more information, visit www.tyco.com.

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