New Assistant Director for Firefighting Programs Added to IFSI

The Illinois Fire Service Institute (IFSI) has hired James Keiken to serve in the newly-created position of Assistant Director for Firefighting Programs. Keiken is responsible for overseeing the management of all firefighting programs, including the Cornerstone Program, and program areas for officer, wildland, liquid propane (LP), investigation, agriculture, and on-campus firefighter training. Keiken provides strategic leadership and will directly oversee the Annual Fire College, Explorer-Cadet school and Winter Fire School.

Keiken comes from Wisconsin where he was Assistant Fire Chief of Administration and Operations for the City of Madison Fire Department. Before taking on his latest role with the Madison Fire Department, he served as Assistant Fire Chief of Personnel, Planning and Training with the department for eight years. Since 2010, he has also served as a Health Technician/Paramedic for the Wisconsin-1 Disaster Medical Assistance Team, which is part of the National Disaster Medical System.  In all, Keiken has more than 33 years of experience in firefighting and emergency medical services.

Keiken has completed the Executive Fire Officer program from the National Fire Academy and has achieved Chief Fire Officer Designation from the Center for Public Safety Excellence (CPSE). He is also a Member Institution of Fire Engineers. He completed a Bachelor of Science in Fire Science Management from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale and Masters of Science in Management from Cardinal Stritch University.

“We are honored to have Jim come aboard and bring a solid background in firefighting, personnel training and leadership,” Royal Mortenson, Director of IFSI, said. “The new position was created to bring all seven of the principal firefighting programs delivered by IFSI under a senior executive leader reporting directly to the Director and Deputy Director.”

Keiken began at IFSI on June 3rd.


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