Lifetime Achievement Award: William Goldfeder

Billy Goldfeder and company

L-R: Brian Goldfeder, Billy Goldfeder, Chief Otto Huber, and Steve Pegram

William “Billy” Goldfeder was awarded the 2018 FDIC Tom Brennan Lifetime Achievement award at this morning’s General Session.  Making the presentation were Chief Bobby Halton, editor in chief of Fire Engineering/FDIC International education director, and Eileen Cress, daughter of Tom Brennan.

In his introduction remarks, Halton noted: “Today we recognize someone who, not to sound cliché, truly needs no introduction. We gather to honor and recognize him for his life’s work. More than that: We bask in the complete and total love within this room at this moment. It is a love that is not conditional or limited. The type of love Billy evokes from us can’t be expressed in words. It allows for disagreement and struggle; is unaffected by position or point of view; and is unspoken, unbreakable, and without boundaries.”

RELATED: Talking Shop with Chief Billy Goldfeder

Goldfeder, a deputy chief in the Loveland-Symmes (OH) Fire Department, has been a firefighter since 1973, when he joined the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department in Long Island, New York. He has been a chief fire officer since 1982 and has served as a chief in Ohio, Virginia, and Florida. He is a 1993 graduate of the National Fire Academy Executive Fire Officer Program and the former chair of the International Association of Fire Chiefs VCOS Committee.  

In 1998, Goldfeder, along with the widely recognized authority on risk in public safety Gordon Graham, created  the Web site www.FireFighterCloseCalls.com, a 100-percent, noncommercial, independent, and free site with firefighter survival as its sole focus. He is a news and editorial columnist for Fire Engineering.com and FirefighterNation.com and has a monthly column “Nozzlehead,” which has appeared in FireRescue for the past 20-plus years. He is the author of the best seller PASS IT ON; the royalties derived from its sale are being donated to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and the Chief Ray Downey Courage and Valor Scholarship Fund. Royalties from his second best seller Pass It On … The 2nd Alarm will be distributed to the same beneficiaries and the Firefighter Cancer Support Network.  

Goldfeder is an honorary battalion chief of the Fire Department of New York, a member of the board of directors for the International Association of Fire Chiefs; the September 11th Families Association, and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation; he served as a commissioner of Fire Accreditation International for the Center for Public Safety Excellence.

Chief Goldfeder has served on several NFPA and IAFC Committees and on the National Firefighter Near-Miss Reporting Task Force Board. He chaired the IAFC Safety, Health and Survival Section and is a subject matter expert for the CDC NIOSH Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program.

His achievements and involvements are too numerous to list. As Halton succinctly expressed it: “Suffice it to say that Chief Goldfeder has sat on every board, consulted with every agency, and shared with every organization and company in the fire service.”

The Lifetime Achievement Award is named for Tom Brennan, who was the editor of Fire Engineering for eight years and a technical editor. Brennan had more than 35 years of fire service experience, including more than 20 years with the Fire Department of New York and five years as chief of the Waterbury (CT) Fire Department. He was co-editor of The Fire Chief’s Handbook, Fifth Edition (Fire Engineering Books, 1995) and the recipient of the 1998 Fire Engineering Lifetime Achievement Award.

 

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