Fire Officials Selected for Harvard Fellowships

Along with announcements by three other fire service partners, U.S. Fire Administrator Ernest Mitchell announced today that four senior fire officials will receive fellowships to attend the Harvard University's Senior Executives in State & Local Government Program this summer at the John F. Kennedy School of Government. The 19-day program includes other State and local government leaders from across the United States and other countries with a focus on exploring the interrelationships between citizens and government, analyzing policy options and examining the ethical and professional responsibilities of exercising leadership.

In announcing the fellowships, Administrator Mitchell stated that "this Harvard experience brings together senior officials from every facet of local and state government to discuss and analyze how to best lead in spite of the myriad array of problems and issues confronting our country at the state and local levels." Mitchell further added "certainly within this discussion are issues of public safety and the need for communities to work together with other local, state and federal entities in planning, response, and mitigation."

Fellowships for this program are provided by Fire Protection Publications (FPP)/International Fire Service Training Association (IFSTA), the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) administered the competitive selection process and coordinated the final phase which took place at USFA's National Emergency Training Center in Emmitsburg, Maryland, on April 30.

U.S. Fire Administrator Mitchell further commented that "USFA along with FPP/IFSTA, IAFC and the NFPA believe that these four senior fire executives will also represent fire and emergency services with a high degree of professionalism. We encourage participation in the Harvard Program because the experience promotes dialogue between fire and emergency services, elected officials and appointed executives. Now more than ever we need to work together to resolve the critical challenges facing our communities and nation. The sponsoring organizations are delighted to award these fellowships. Over the years, the entire fire service benefits from the quality of officials who exercise leadership produced by the Harvard Program."

The selection panel included representatives of FPP/IFSTA, IAFC, NFPA, DHS/USFA and former Harvard University's Senior Executives in State & Local Government program participants.

Those selected are:

Joel Baker, Deputy Chief, Atlanta (GA) Fire-Rescue Department
Phil Eagleson, Fire Chief, Town of Saugeen Shores - Port Elgin, Ontario, Canada
Michael Romas, Assistant Chief, Milwaukee (WI) Fire Department
Derrick Sawyer, Deputy Commissioner, Philadelphia (PA) Fire Department

As an entity of the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency, the mission of the U.S. Fire Administration is to provide national leadership to foster a solid foundation for our fire and emergency services stakeholders in prevention, preparedness, and response.

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

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