FDIC International, Firefighting, Leadership, Volunteer Fire Service

Mike Gagliano and Mike Dugan Talk Firehouse Excellence at FDIC 2012

Mike Gagliano and Mike Dugan, hosts of the Mikey G. & Mikey D. program on Fire Engineering Talk Radio, sought to convey their passion for the fire service and stir up students’ enthusiasm for making their firehouses better during their Tuesday FDIC 2012 workshop, “Firehouse Excellence.”

At the start of the workshop, Dugan took the opportunity to pay tribute to fallen Fire Department of New York (FDNY) Lieutenant Rich Nappi, who died in the line of duty after a three-alarm warehouse fire in Brooklyn yesterday.

Dugan and Gagliano, who hail from New York City and Seattle, respectively, stressed that no matter what part of the country firefighters are from and no matter whether they are paid or volunteer, it’s possible to make the situation in one’s fire department better. Gagliano urged students to temporarily put aside the thoughts about naysayers in their departments and focus on themselves and how they could create the change they desire.

“Across the country–across the world, really–many of the issues and problems we face are the same,” Dugan said, “We are working on a way to make us better at what we do.”

Gagliano said the impetus for this program was because he and Dugan were sick of encountering good firefighters who were discouraged with the fire service and considering quitting it altogether.

The pair told students that, to improve firehouse conditions, it was critical to present a compelling vision to other members. Every department, they said, had stories that needed to be told and traditions that must be preserved and imparted to new members. Though members of the fire service tend to be humble, a station and department needs to take pride in its past and remember where it comes from.

Gagliano and Dugan said that a department must also have an accurate understanding of where it is now to know where it wants to go in the future.

Gagliano, well known as one of the “Seattle Guys” and for advancing the concept of air management, is a captain with the Seattle (WA) Fire Department. Dugan is a recently retired member of the FDNY.